Building Your NDIS Plan

Building Your NDIS Plan: Turning Dreams into Reality

You’ve been approved for the NDIS – amazing! This is the point where your tailored support journey starts taking shape. Your NDIS plan is your blueprint, defining the pathways that will help you attain your goals, gain greater independence, and live your best possible life. Let’s explore how to get the most out of the planning process, set empowering goals, and understand the types of support that might propel you forward.

The Foundation: Your NDIS Planning Meeting

Your NDIS planning meeting is a pivotal conversation where you’ll have an opportunity to collaborate with an NDIS planner, also known as a Local Area Coordinator (LAC) or an Early Childhood Partner for young children. During this meeting think about discussing the following:

  1. Your Life Blueprint: Talk about what matters to you, your everyday living, things you struggle with, and any areas where you’d like to see improvement,

  2. Dream Big (and Small): Your NDIS plan is about working towards goals. Talk about the things you’d like to achieve, from everyday tasks (like learning to cook independently or being able to manage personal care) to bigger ambitions (like getting a job, engaging in hobbies, or building new friendships).

  3. Supports that Make a Difference: Discuss the support types that align with your needs. Explore various possibilities like home modifications, access to assistive technology, therapies, support with community participation, or the help of skilled support workers.

inclusive workspace atmosphere office job

Finding Providers Tailored to Your Needs

Finding the right provider is about aligning their expertise with your unique needs and preferences. Support coordinators can be invaluable resources in this journey. They can:

  • Help you clarify your needs: Through discussions and goal-setting exercises, they’ll understand your specific requirements.
  • Match you with suitable providers: Their knowledge of the local landscape and provider strengths allows them to suggest relevant options.
  • Assist with research and comparisons: They can help you navigate provider websites, reviews and service descriptions.
  • Facilitate initial connections: They can arrange meet-and-greets or trial sessions with potential providers.

Goal Setting: Aiming for Success

Working alongside your planner, let’s break down effective goal setting to guide your NDIS plan:

  • Specific and Measurable: Avoid vague wishes! Focus on clearly defined, achievable targets (e.g., “Attend physiotherapy twice a week to improve mobility” rather than “Get stronger”).
  • Relevant: Goals should connect directly to how your disability impacts your daily life or your hopes for the future.
  • Time-Bound: Having timeframe (short-term and long-term) keeps you on track. A year might be suitable to work toward gaining a specific skill, but breaking it into smaller stages helps track progress.
  • Flexibility is Key: Your life (and your needs) will naturally evolve. Don’t be afraid to adjust your goals and plan during the regular review process.
disabled man wheelchair working his office job

The Magic of "Reasonable and Necessary" Supports

The NDIS focuses on providing ‘reasonable and necessary’ supports. Here’s a breakdown of what that means and the categories of support you might find included in your plan:

  • Core Supports: This covers day-to-day activities, consumables (like continence aids), transportation assistance to participate in the community, and support coordination to get the most from your plan.

  • Capacity Building Supports: This focuses on developing your skills and independence for areas such as social and community participation, improved living arrangements, health and wellbeing activities, finding and keeping a job, or managing your NDIS plan more effectively.

  • Capital Supports: This includes one-off purchases, including assistive technology (wheelchairs, communication devices, etc.) or essential home modifications for accessibility.

Tips for Your Planning Meeting

  • Be Prepared: Think about your priorities and jot down notes ahead of time. Consider bringing along an advocate or loved one for support.

  • Questions Welcome: Don’t be afraid to ask questions and clarify things you don’t understand –your NDIS Planner is there to guide you.

  • Take Your Time: It’s a crucial discussion – don’t feel pressured to rush or settle on things you feel unsure about. Take the time to absorb all the information.

The Power of Partnership

Your NDIS planner is your collaborator. Think of your planning meeting as a brainstorming session – share your aspirations, explore possibilities, get creative, and be honest about what you truly need. If you haven’t heard some terms (like Core, Capacity Building, or Capital supports) yet, it’s a great time to ask about these as well.

The Key to Your Future

Your NDIS plan is a living document and an adaptable tool that puts you in the driver’s seat of your support. Embrace the planning process as an exciting opportunity to outline a path toward greater independence and personal growth. The combination of well-defined goals and carefully chosen supports, under the guidance of your planner, creates an unbeatable recipe to enhance your well-being and achieve the incredible things you have within you!

Talk to Optimum Care Group, Melbourne’s NDIS support plan coordinator.