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Semiahmoo House Society

Organization Details

(604) 536 - 1242
(604) 536 - 9507
Year founded: 
Total Membership: 
Organization Region: 
Lower Mainland & Upper Fraser Valley

Semiahmoo House Society is a full service agency that grounds all its involvement with people in the principles of Person Centred Practices (http://www.learningcommunity.us/). All employees and volunteers are trained in using this approach. Our in-house trainers also provide the education to others through teaching in colleges and local agencies. We are committed to using the tools and skills necessary to understand what is important to and for the person and to support the individual to achieve what her/his goals. Foundational to our practice are three Service Principles which are our promise to someone seeking support:

• First – We will start by listening to who you are

• Second – we only exist to satisfy other peoples’ needs

• Third – We will seek to improve your community

Thus, while we can list some specific areas of services, in fact, all our supports are geared to the specific person or family. Specific service areas include:

Personal Development

… a day program for adults with developmental disabilities. Individuals are provided opportunities to increase personal growth and development through components chosen from their person centred plan. Some possible programs include social development, recreation, leisure, education, life skill training and volunteer placements.

Employment Training and Support

… an employment oriented program where adults explore options for personal growth and experience through a variety of employment opportunities. Some of these include: food services (both basic and catering levels); landscaping; minor equipment maintenance/repair; janitorial; greenhouse horticulture and packaging; packaging and assembly; handmade greeting card design and production; handmade soaps, scents and candles; and marketing work in our storefront.

Customized Employment Program

… meaningful employment is a big part of inclusion and people with disabilities need to work at jobs they enjoy, be paid real wages and feel valued as employees. This program supports individuals with developmental disabilities who find the traditional labour market approach of matching people to existing job openings is not effective. It is an individualized determination of strengths, needs and interests of each participant, and is designed to match these to the specific needs of an employer. Through this matching and ongoing support people find real success in maintaining “real work for real pay”.

Residential Support

… the Society provides a spectrum of person centred living support for people with disabilities through:

a) Group Homes - 24 hour support helps each individual living in one of our licensed group homes. The person plans their own life with encouragement and support from family, friends and their support team; and

b) Community Support Network – which provides highly individualized, custom designed solutions based on the person centred plan of the individual. Some living options currently in place are:

a. Cluster Apartment Living: person lives in own apartment with support based on the needs/desires.

b. Family Support/Home Sharing: person enjoys the support of a family environment and/or may live in a suite within the support family’s home.

c. Life Skills Support/Semi-Independent Living: person lives in their own home and receives support as necessary to develop daily life skills to live independently.

d. Roommate Model: for individuals who want to live in their own home with a roommate who can assist in providing some support.

e. Respite: our Network assists families to obtain respite services including:

i. emergency respite: in the family home or the support provider’s home to insure quality support while the family is on vacation, ill or in the midst of a family emergency/crisis;

ii. hourly respite: assists families needing a break during the day to pursue other activities. Can be in the home or a variety of other locations ; or

iii. weekend/weekday respite: benefits families who require support for a longer period of time. Can be provided in the family home or in another location.

Recreation & Leisure

… out of school care and recreation and leisure opportunities to people with developmental disabilities ages 9 and up. Provides a safe and fun environment that enables participants to access the community, to express themselves creatively, learn new and exciting skills, while having the opportunity to make friends. Includes: out of school care for teens ages 13 – 19; adapted interest-based programs such as theatre, musical theatre, African dancing and drumming, photography, cooking, sports, adult social outings, children's social groups, golf, drop-in movie and bingo evenings and much, much more; an annual minimum of 3 trips to Camp Elphinstone, Cultus Lake and Whistler.

Family Services

… empowers individuals with developmental disabilities and their families through education, advocacy and the creation of supportive community based networks. Through this person centred empowerment, we can ensure a lasting supportive difference in the quality of life for individuals and their families. We collaborate with individuals, businesses, community partners and groups as well as government to create effective support for families in the Surrey and White Rock areas.

Volunteer Placement Program

… volunteers play an important role at Semiahmoo House Society. The increased service and support of volunteers enhances the life experience of those we serve. Thanks to volunteers, more people have more friends, more opportunities and more happiness. Opportunities exist throughout the Society for volunteers to lend a hand. These can range from supporting people directly either individually or in groups; assisting our trained staff as they deliver services; or supporting our work in other ways like fundraising or Board membership. You can volunteer in any of our programs.

Acquired Brain Injury Program

… day program and drop-in services are available to a wide spectrum of adults who live with an acquired brain injury. Our person centred services address social, cognitive, physical, vocational and emotional needs in the areas such as: social development; self-care and life skills; community access and integration; recreation and leisure; education; vocational interests; and volunteer placements.

Peninsula Child Care Centre

… offers three programs:

  1. Group Day Care for children ages 30 months – 5 years;
  2. School Age Care for children ages 6 – 12 years; and
  3. Preschool for children ages 30 months to 5 years.

… this fully licensed facility is committed to:

• Partnering with parents/guardians by respecting their family values and sharing information;

• Fostering the physical, cognitive, social and emotional development of each child; and

• Creating and maintaining an environment that is safe, FUN and educational.

Snoezelen Room

… provides a relaxing environment in which supported individuals, family members, caregivers and staff are able to develop a therapeutic relationship which does not require any intellectual response. The room is open to people from the community including medical professional referral and schools.


Organization Address: 
15306 - 24th Avenue Surrey British Columbia Canada V4A 2J1
Board Members: 

President:  Rich Gorman

Staff Members: 

Executive Director, Doug Tennant, d.tennant@shsbc.ca