From 1st July 2016, the NDIS has been rolling out in many areas across NSW and will continue to progressively roll out to the rest of Australia in the coming months. You can check when your area will go live by heading to www.ndis.nsw.gov.au and searching for your postcode.
You must be deemed eligible before being registered with the NDIS. To see if you are eligible, see the eligibility checklist.
When you become an NDIS participant, you’ll have to make a plan about how you would like to live your life and what support you’ll need to help you achieve your goals. The overwhelming advice that we’ve had here at Hit 100 is to ensure you go into your planning meetings well prepared and start preparing now – so here are 6 tips to help you get started:
1. START PLANNING TODAY
Think about your personal goals and aspirations. Do your goals include more social interactions through sports and arts? Are they health related such as wanting help with losing or gaining weight or to ensure you are meeting your nutritional requirements? Are they skill based like learning how to cook healthy meals? Are they about gaining more independence?
You need to think about what supports you will need to help you achieve your goals. For example, will you need a sports coach, music teacher, dietitian, speech pathologist, psychologist, art teacher… the list is endless!
Once you feel you know the services you want supporting you, go online to the NDIS service providers list and find providers who service your area. Make sure you make contact with these service providers and make sure they can help you achieve your goals – remember – you’re the one who gets to choose which providers you’d like! Shop around and make sure you are getting the best for you or your family member.
2. THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX
Don’t think about the NDIS as your traditional disability services and support. Now is your chance to be creative! Take the time to think about what works for you and what your life goals are. You may like to try some supports you’ve never had before such as meal delivery services. You may like to think about some services that are already working for you and how these supports could be strengthened. You can ask your NDIA planner to include these things in your plan – the NDIS guarantees you all the reasonable and necessary supports that you need to help reach your goals, you just need to be able to justify the services.
Start re-imagining your future. Think about:
- Things you want to try
- Things you like doing and want to keep doing
- Things you want to change
- Things that could improve your morale and make daily activities easier
Preplanning sessions are available in many areas, which may give you a good idea on services available and help you think outside the box a bit.
3. BE SPECIFIC
The NDIS is able to make a huge difference to people’s lives. It’s in your hands so make the most of it! Be as specific as you can about what you want and what your goals are – you know yourself or your family member best – the more specific the goals and services you would like are, the more likely it is that they’ll get approved.
4. WRITE IT DOWN
It helps to write down your goals and the supports you’d like and bring it to the meeting with your planner. Write down the barriers you encounter every day that make life harder than it could be – start monitoring now. Before you go and see a planner try to keep a diary to jot notes about barriers or outcomes you foresee in the future. Take photos and videos to support your application – they will be good examples to use in your first planning meeting to help you get the most out of your NDIS plan.
5. BRING A TRUSTED FAMILY/FRIEND/CARER
You don’t need to go through this process alone. You can bring a trusted family member, friend or carer to the planning meeting with you to help you develop your plan – they’ll help make sure you’re not forgetting anything!
6. YOUR PLAN SHOULD BE JUST ABOUT YOU
The first meeting will lay the foundation of your plan – what are your goals, and how you may reach them. The planner will work with you to fully develop your plan, including supports, funding and timelines. You decide what works best for you in managing your plan. You can manage it yourself, get assistance from another person or use the NDIS agency. You decide how you want to put your plan into action, no one else!
Are you interested in learning how you can get support with mealtimes and nutrition on the NDIS? We’re hosting a series of FREE Hit 100 meal tasting and nutrition information sessions across Sydney, Newcastle and Canberra!
You can find out more about how the NDIS works, creating your NDIS plan and choosing your support here.