About Us


The organisation began life as a small educational centre dedicated to Deafblind needs, situated within the grounds of St. Joseph’s house, Stillorgan, under the auspices of St. Mary’s School for Deaf Girls in Cabra. A number of current residents attended the school throughout the 1980s where teachers adapted the Department of Education’s mainstream curriculum to include adapted communication systems, sensorial games, modelling clay and gardening.

In 1989 the Anne Sullivan Foundation was established by a group of pioneering parents and other interested people. Their vision to promote Deafblindness as a unique disability and enhance the lives of people who are Deafblind culminated in the opening of The Anne Sullivan Centre’s residential service in 1996.

Between 1997 and 2006, the Anne Sullivan Foundation purchased four additional houses in the area. This reflected an effort to move toward a less institutional model of care and promote the independence of service users. The centre itself was renovated and now boasts a number of therapy rooms that are open to service users around the clock, including a Multi- Sensory Room, Music Room and Gym.


In 2009, a bungalow situated to the rear of St. Joseph’s House and within walking distance from Anne Sullivan Centre, was converted into a school and officially opened by Barry Andrews T.D. Unfortunately, the school was forced to close in 2013 and the development of services for adults who are Deafblind was prioritised by the Foundation.

The Foundations’ name was chosen to pay tribute to an Irish immigrant who came to prominence as a Deafblind teacher in the United States.

as2Anne Sullivan’s parents left Limerick during the famine and settled in Massachusetts, where Anne was born in 1866.  At only five years old, Anne contracted an eye infection and began losing her sight. Three years later, Anne’s mother passed away and she and her younger brother were abandoned by their father and sent to an Alms house in Tewksbury.

It was there that Anne was afforded the opportunity to undergo surgery which helped to restore her sight.  She attended Perkins School for the Blind in Boston where having begun as a difficult student, she graduated as Valedictorian of her class, aged 20.

During her time at Perkins, Anne learned to communicate with Deafblind friends, including Laura Bridgeman the first Deafblind person to be educated. It was a skill that would come in handy when, in 1886, she was hired by the Keller’s to care for their daughter Helen in Alabama. Helen was a profoundly challenging student. But Anne was determined, to the point of obsession, and finally managed to help Helen communicate.

Anne Sullivan served as Helen Keller’s educator for over a decade and accompanied her to Radcliffe College where she became the first deafblind person to graduate with a Bachelor of Arts Degree. The pair remained lifelong companions and when Anne died in 1936, Helen was holding her hand.

More information about Anne can be found at




We perpetuate Anne Sullivan’s legacy by facilitating Deafblind people to pursue meaningful, active and fruitful lives. The Anne Sullivan Centre is the bridge between the community and people who are Deafblind. We do this by providing care and development services to Deafblind people in partnership with families and others who fund and support us.


  • We will embrace the uniqueness of each individual by providing personalised activities and a communications plan based on the needs and decisions of the individual
  • We will be recognised for our skills and knowledge of Deafblind, being acknowledged as a centre of Excellence
  • We will achieve excellence through our staff, empowered to develop and excel
  • We will be fully compliant with Regulations and maintain appropriate standards
  • We will seek to constantly improve and innovate


  • We work as a team always in the interests of our service users
  • Our residents and service users are part of the Centre and respected as such
  • We are accountable to each other, our funders, supporters and the community
  • We are respectful of others and fair in our dealings
  • We challenge ourselves to do better and measure our performance
  • We are transparent and communicate clearly
  • We do this in an environment that is safe for everyone.


“The guiding belief of the Anne Sullivan Centre is that every Deafblind person is a human being with potential to live a full life and the entitlement to do so”

The Anne Sullivan Centre residential services are inspected and monitored by the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) against the National Standards for Residential Services for Children and Adults with Disabilities

Inspection reports for all residential services are available to view online at www.hiqa.ie

Download a copy of the Anne Sullivan Centre’s Annual Report here.

ASC Annual report 2015

We are registered with the Charities Regulatory Authority  and with the charities section of the Revenue Commissioners  CHY-9900

We fully support the Governance code for Community, Voluntary and Charitable organisations and commit to it’s Principles of Good Governance.

Staff salaries at the Anne Sullivan Centre are aligned to HSE pay scales. The CEO salary is aligned to the Primary,  Community and Continuing Care Pay scale 1/01/10 FEMPI. The CEO is currently on level 6 of this payscale which is €81,554.

The Anne Sullivan Centre Limited is a company Limited by guarantee Reg no 413994- Registered in Ireland

Registered address is The Anne Sullivan Centre , Brewery Road, Stillorgan, Co Dublin.

Anne Sullivan Foundation for Deafblind People

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