About Our Community
We have promised ourselves that we shall always treat our residents as we would our own loved ones. Nothing less than our best will do.
This is the promise that the staff at Chestnut Lane – and throughout Brookdale Senior Living communities – has shared since first opening its doors. It’s a simple promise to be compassionate and kind, understanding and respectful – a promise to become extended family to the seniors entrusted in our care and to our residents who have chosen our Gresham, Oregon senior community for the deaf for its active lifestyle.
The Perfect Location
From our fourth-floor dining room, the 11,237-foot Mt. Hood provides a spectacular backdrop for Chestnut Lane, one of only three communities in the United States that caters to the needs of the deaf and deaf/blind. Located in Gresham, our community is within walking distance of the MAX light rail system. MAX travels throughout the greater Portland area, offering a wonderful convenience for our families, many of whom travel here from points all across the United States. With the MAX rail so close by, our families can fly into Portland airport and be at the back door of Chestnut Lane within 25 minutes. And while they are visiting their loved ones, MAX gives them the freedom to easily explore all that the Portland metropolitan area has to offer – all without the expense of having to rent a car.
A Wonderful Place to Live
Chestnut Lane is a special place where the deaf community comes first. When our community was built in 2003, it was specifically designed to enhance and enrich the lives of deaf/deaf blind seniors. Our spacious, open areas provides the visibility residents need to sign to each other from across the room. Our hallways are very wide and offer alcoves that allow for privacy between residents when they are engaged in sign language conversations. Each member of our staff is committed to communicating with residents in sign language – some are deaf themselves. In addition, our community is group oriented – we are one big family that embraces people of all ages and a variety of disabilities, including younger people with cerebral palsy and developmental issues. Yet no disability stops our residents from enjoying life to its fullest. From casino visits and wine tours, to exploring Multnomah Falls in the Columbia River Gorge, to holiday parties, picnics, weekly bowling and shopping, our residents are always on the go!
Our four-story community offers 70 apartments, including studios and one-bedroom units. Each of our open, spacious apartments provides a wheelchair accessible bathroom, kitchenette, walk-in closet and lots of windows. Apartments on the south side of the building have views of our quiet residential tree-lined street, while those on the north side look out at the MAX train. Residents can either have a video phone in their apartments or we offer a community videophone for their convenience. They can also bring in their own furniture and decorate their apartments any way they wish. After all, it’s their home, not ours! Everyone is on a month-to-month rent; there are no buy-in fees or leases.
Strong, Caring Professional Relationships
Chestnut Lane has a close relationship with local hospitals and doctors who know and understand the needs of our Deaf residents. We provide local medical providers informational presentations on working with Deaf patients, sign language and the Deaf culture.
Chestnut Lane is proud to be one of Oregon’s largest employers for Deaf employees in the state. Some of our Deaf employees commute over an hour each way just to work at Chestnut Lane. We are extremely selective in choosing who will make up our team; only those willingness to be with us for years to come are accepted into the Chestnut family.
VISITING CHESTNUT LANE – ASSISTED LIVING FOR DEAF AND DEAF BLIND WITH CAPTIONS from i DEAF NEWS on Vimeo.
Our Community Lifestyle
A Wonderful Active Lifestyle
Every morning, our Life Engagement Director joins residents in the dining room and starts the day with “Sign News,” letting everyone know all of the different options on the day’s schedule. After breakfast, many residents join our daily exercise group, which can include chair dancing to musical vibrations, yoga, walking and balloon volleyball. Residents enjoy bingo, gardening, horseracing, Wii bowling – and real bowling tournaments at a nearby bowling alley. Every week, we have a volunteer from the outside join us to lead all kinds of craft activities, including beading, knitting, painting, making cards and holiday decorations for their apartments – even woodworking. For the health and wellbeing of our residents, we strive to create a structured environment that offers a wide range of activities and socialization.
As members of the Deaf community, Chestnut Lane hosts monthly events for the Northwest Deaf Club, enabling the Deaf community to come together and enjoy various outings and gatherings that promote the Deaf culture. Because deafness can limit access to many everyday things that most of us take for granted, our events attract deaf people and their loved ones from all over the greater Portland and Vancouver, WA areas.
Partnering with the Local Community
Chestnut Lane is a pet-friendly community, where small dogs and cats, rabbits, hamsters, birds and service animals are all part of our family. Because most of our residents are on Medicaid, it’s not always easy for them to afford routine pet care. Thankfully, one of the veterinarians in the area started “Project Chestnut,” providing free vaccinations, spays and neuters for our animals.
Chestnut Lane takes great pride in preparing fresh home-cooked meals made from scratch. Each meal offers two entrée choices, vegetables or salad, and of course, we never forget dessert! Our chefs, who know sign language, and take the time to learn tastes and preferences of each resident, work hard to make sure we offer a combination of down-home comfort food and gourmet offerings. From pot roast and homemade soups, to beautiful fruit trays, chef salads and Chicken Cordon Blue, our meals are always nutritious – and delicious! For all meals, residents are waited on, restaurant style, so that they can enjoy conversation with each other. We can also accommodate special diets, including carb-controlled, low salt (table salt is always available), low fat and low cholesterol. And every morning, we all gather in the lobby, where snacks, such as coffee cake and donuts, are served while residents chat and visit one another. In the afternoon, there’s always fresh popcorn available in our lobby.
Learn more about Brookdale’ continuing care retirement communities here.
Chestnut Lane was established in 2003 by Mae Johnson. Mae’s parents are both Deaf and she was running a foster home for the Deaf. It was her dream to have a place where Deaf people from all around the nation could go if they needed assisted living. Through hard work and the cooperation of the [...]
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VISITING CHESTNUT LANE – ASSISTED LIVING FOR DEAF AND DEAF BLIND WITH CAPTIONS from i DEAF NEWS on Vimeo. Check out this great video of Chestnut Lane!