Thank you again for your continued engagement, interest and support. I wish you a restful break and wonderful new year.
2016 has been quite the year, hasn’t it? With full scheme NDIS roll-out from July we have seen really big differences between trial implementation processes and new processes created for participants coming in to the Scheme from July. It has been a huge effort to understand these processes, keep up with them, and then communicate them.
The key to NDIS success is a well-informed participant body. Absolutely crucial. I don’t believe that any major reform ever comes ready-made from on high. Change comes from the ‘bottom-up’, when people can grasp the opportunities for themselves and others. I am proud of our achievements in this area and especially thank Katy Gagliardi who undertook an internship with us and has done a stellar job in communicating a great deal of practical information.
It became especially quickly clear that information on really cool things about the NDIS like self management, plan management and supports co-ordination, were not getting the airing or understanding they needed to make them real choices for people in reality. All participants should have the ability to think through every choice in relation to the NDIS for themselves. We have tried to really fill this gap with clear and accurate information.
Around this we have developed a number of well-received workshops around the NDIS. Again we heard over and over from people that they left most workshops feeling more confused. We have been determined to do something different – bringing accurate, practical and grasp-able sessions for people. We know our pre-planning support assisted people to get good outcomes from the NDIS and wanted to share this knowledge with others. So we have thoroughly enjoyed working with more than a dozen services and informal support and carers groups to run over 25 workshops and will continue offering them in 2017. If you are interested, give us a hoy.
2016 has seen us become registered provider for Supports Co-ordination. This proved to be a large exercise for most small organisations, as it was based on processes created around large traditional disability service providers. We are also working on registration for NDIS categories that will help us to deliver our Micro Enterprise Project to as many people in Sydney who feel it would benefit them.
Supports Co-ordination (and Plan Management) – boring names for some cool things in the NDIS! And BTW we have a workshop titled just this to help you understand these things more and what benefit they can bring.
NDIS funding inevitably means more services. We need those services to be working towards outcomes in our lives that bring us solid foundations – work, relationships, home, contribution based on our potential … A life well lived by our own definition! Services are not an end in themselves, they should always be part of the means to something we feel is important.
How can you breathe life in to your NDIS plan? As always, we will be looking to share our learnings in our practice of supports co-ordination, to help people make real change in their lives, and get creative and flexible outcomes from their NDIS plans.
We believe that it is very important that supports co-ordination is also about practices that support inclusion and community connecting. We need it to be more than a case management service.
Lastly it has been such a thrill this year to embark on a partnership with Community Living Project to deliver their highly successful and evaluated program assisting people to start their own micro or small niche enterprise. Kyle Wiebe is responsible for the program in Sydney, we have gotten started with participants who wish to dedicate resources to this and are very excited for its expansion in 2017. Kyle comes with business and community development experience and it has been great to see people benefit from this experience, and Kyle benefit from the experience and expertise of people with disability.
We will continue to remain open, informative, collaborative and promoting the value of lived experience in creating change.
Thank you so much again, Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year