Not all NDIS plans are created equal. For example, not every NDIS plan will include funding for Support Coordination, even though it’s a hugely beneficial service for NDIS participants. In this article, we’re discussing the role and benefits of a Support Coordinator, as well as how to get funding for Support Coordination included in your NDIS plan.
What is NDIS Support Coordination?
A Support Coordinator helps you make the most of your NDIS plan. The exact nature of Support Coordination depends on the level of funding (more on that in a moment) that you are allocated. In general, their job is to help you understand your plan, connect you with service providers and other resources that will help you achieve your goals, and build your capacity to manage your own supports.
There are three levels of Support Coordination available under the NDIS. These are:
- Level 1: Support connection – this involves supporting you to connect with supports (informal, community, and funded) so that you can achieve the goals outlined in your NDIS plan.
- Level 2: Coordination of supports – this is a more robust approach where you are supported to understand and use your plan and its funding in the pursuit of your goals. At level 2, a Support Coordinator will arrange your supports and manage the services that are provided to you.
- Level 3: Specialist support coordination – this category is for people with complex situations and provides extra support to navigate the NDIS.
What are the benefits of having a Support Coordinator?
A Support Coordinator is there to make your NDIS journey easier, and this is the key benefit of having one. Here’s what a good Support Coordinator will do:
- Source providers based on your needs and/or preferences using their knowledge of reputable local businesses. From here, they present potential providers to you so that you get the final say on who joins your support network.
- Communicate with your providers, keeping them updated on any changes in your situation or any issues that you have raised.
- Assist you to advocate for your needs. This can include helping you to request different or increased NDIS funding, or to manage a service provider that’s not providing the highest quality supports.
- Have your back – if something isn’t right, they won’t dismiss your concerns.
- Keep you in the loop if there are any issues with your plan or funding.
- Complete end-of-plan reporting for the NDIS.
As you can see, a good Support Coordinator can be a valuable member of your support network. With all that said, you might be wondering how to get funding for Support Coordination. If so, keep reading – that’s what we’re talking about next!
How to get Support Coordination included in your NDIS plan
To get Support Coordination included in your NDIS plan, you need to show the NDIS that it’s ‘reasonable and necessary’ for you. The same principle applies to all NDIS-funded supports.
If you want Support Coordination funding included in your plan, you can request it. Start by discussing your needs with your Local Area Coordinator (LAC) or Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI). It’s important to highlight exactly why Support Coordination would benefit you as not everyone who requests it will receive it. Some examples of reasons include:
- Your family situation – having family members who also live with a disability or have limited capacity to support you to navigate the NDIS.
- Having a small or non-existent support network.
- You are experiencing a transition in your life (such as moving house, or starting or finishing school).
- Having limited or no experience with the NDIS.
- Your disability or other circumstances mean that you have a limited capacity to manage your plan and supports.
- Having a disability that may make it hard for you to communicate with providers, provide feedback, and advocate for your needs.
- Cultural and language barriers.
- Having multiple disabilities.
- Changing, high-level, or complex needs.
So, there you have it! By now, you probably have a good idea of the role that a Support Coordinator can play in your support network and you have some tips for accessing funding.
If you already have the right funding and you’re looking for a Support Coordinator, you’re in luck! Our team of Support Coordinators are ready to help you achieve your NDIS goals and get the most out of your plan. You can learn more about our Support Coordination service here or, if you’re ready to chat about your support needs, you can contact us here.