Forbes Advocate

NDIS UpdatesAdvertising Feature

Help when you need itAdvertising Feature

Committed: If you are caring for a loved one, there is help when and if you need it. Carers Australia works to improve the health, well being, resilience and financial security of carers. Photo: Shutterstock

It's good to know someone has your back when you are a full time carer for a member of your family. Families and carers provide help and support that could otherwise be provided by formal services or paid support workers.

They are often one of the greatest advocates for people with disabilities, providing practical and emotional support to help them live their best life.

Moreover, if the person they care for wants it, carers play a vital role in supporting them to join the NDIS, set their goals and use their NDIS plan effectively.

In addition to the government-funded programs available to support carers, an NDIS participant might use funding in their plan to facilitate respite.

Respite supports participants and their carers by giving carers short breaks from their caring responsibilities. It also gives participants time away from their families.

For carers, taking some time off can help them better manage their own health and improve their wellbeing.

For a participant, this might mean:

  • joining a new community group.
  • having a short stay out of home to try new things, make new friends or develop new skills.
  • temporary periods of extra personal supports so that the participant can remain at home when families and/or carers are not available.
  • support to participate in community activities, resulting in a break for carers.

In deciding whether to fund or provide a support, its is taken into account what is reasonable to expect from families, carers, informal networks and the community.

Carer support includes:

  • in-person and phone-based counselling
  • in-person and online peer support
  • emergency respite
  • financial support through Carer Directed Support Packages
  • online self-guided coaching

More information for carers and how to include respite in an NDIS plan is available on the Carers Australia website .

It is also suggested you to talk with your Local Area Coordinator or Planner on what supports might be available in your local community.

An update from the NDISAdvertising Feature

FULL OF LIFE: NDIS participants are encouraged to have their say. Photo: Shutterstock

An update from the National Disability Insurance Scheme reports that it now provides life changing support to more than 502,000 participants with permanent and significant disability, across Australia.

"Reaching this significant milestone in just over eight years marks an important achievement for the Scheme, which continues to support participants to achieve their goals through providing reasonable and necessary disability related supports, while working with their families, carers and the broader disability community," an NDIS spokesperson said.

NDIS participants are shaping and building a better Scheme, by engaging in several co-design initiatives led by the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA), the federal agency which implements the Scheme.

The NDIA continues to work with the disability sector, and participants and their families and carers in improving the NDIS - making practical changes so the Scheme works better for everyone.

PLANS: The NDIA's work to improve participant outcomes and experience will continue through the Participant Service Charter. Photo: Shutterstock

Significant federal government investment will also ensure the NDIS continues to deliver a strong, participant focused foundation into the future. In the December 2021 budget update, the Morrison Government invested an additional $26.4 billion over four years into the NDIS to fund the projected growth in the Scheme, taking the total investment in the scheme to more than $140 billion over four years from 2021-22 and ensuring the NDIS is fully funded

Average NDIS payment per participant continues to grow, from $39,000 in 2018 to $54,900 in 2021. This Financial Year (21/22) total NDIS funding is estimated to reach $29.2 billion, up from $23.3 billion the previous year.

Participants are the experts in their own lives, and as such should have choice and control over how NDIS funding can best support them.

The NDIS also continues to receive positive feedback from parents and carers of children on the NDIS.

The latest NDIS participant survey has found that 83 per cent of participants rate the Scheme's planning processes as good or very good and 77 per cent rated the access process as good or very good, in the December quarter. The NDIS model is a world first social insurance scheme, designed as an early investment to help people build capacity, independence and inclusion.