Congratulations! Getting your NDIS application approved is the first step to finding the right support and achieving your goals.
In this article, we’ll dive into the steps following your NDIS application approval including how to plan your NDIS budget, reviewing your support goals, and most importantly…finding Support Workers that are right for you.
How Will I Know My NDIS Application Was Approved?
Once your NDIS application is approved, you’ll receive your plan in person or in the mail, and through the myplace portal.
Your early childhood partner, Local Area Coordinator (LAC) or NDIA planner will let you know the next steps and how long it will take to receive your approved plan.
Review Your Goals
Once you receive your plan in person, it’s time to review the goals you’ve set.
What’s your NDIS plan there to do? What are you trying to accomplish/achieve?
You will have set your goals during your NDIS Planning Meeting, so make sure to review all the goals you’ve set to make sure they still align with your needs.
Plan Your Budget
Once your NDIS application is approved, it’s time to plan your budget!
Managing your NDIS Plan and how to spend NDIS funding can feel overwhelming, especially if you’re a new NDIS Participant or family.
We’ve already written a piece on How To Spend Your NDIS Funding, but what’s important to remember is that, with your NDIS funds, time isn’t money - money is time. The more money you save, the more ‘time’ and support services you’ll get.
So it’s important to plan how to best use your NDIS funding as soon as possible!
What Kind Of Support Do I Need?
Before you plan your budget, you’ll need to figure out what kind of support you need. By working out the list of NDIS support services you need, you'll be able to decide where to allocate your budget.
Support Workers can provide all types of services.
These include things like:
- Assistance with personal care such as showering and dressing
- Help with cleaning your home, gardening, cooking and doing life admin
- Guidance with your health and wellness goals
- Social support attending personal, work or community events
- Help for speech, occupational, physiotherapy or other programs.
- Mentoring and help to learn new skills.
- Help to get to and from work or appointments, and taking public transport.
Once you’ve figured out the type of support you need, as well as your weekly schedule (e.g. How often will you need support? How many hours a week?), you can calculate to see how much of your NDIS funding you can allocate to what.
It's important to do this after your NDIS application is approved.
Here’s a quick example below.
Support Budget Example
Before Your NDIS Application? What’s Critical? What’s Nice?
When considering your needs, it’s important to take a few things into account.
Think about this before submitting your NDIS application.
How much informal support (i.e. help from people you know, e.g. friends and family) will you have? Will the availability of informal support be changing?
What are your critical support needs? Do you need assistance with personal care? Do you need help to get to and from appointments? Meal preparation?
Making sure you’re aware of what’s critical and what’s nice to have will help you make the most out of your NDIS funding.
Choosing A Support Coordinator
If you have NDIS funding for a Support Coordinator, it can be really helpful in supporting you to get the most out of your NDIS plan and maximise your funds!
Finding the right Support Coordinator can be tricky. You have your own individual preferences that matter. Some are independent, some are with organisations that solely offer support coordination, and some are part of large providers.
To help you find the best Support Coordinator for your goals, we’ve shared things to look out for and important questions to ask when making your choice.
Choosing a Plan Manager
Plan Managers are an essential piece of the puzzle if your NDIS funding is plan managed! So, it’s critical that you choose the right Plan Manager for your needs.
We’ve put together a list of tips on choosing the right plan manager here.
Finding And Choosing Support Providers
Finding the right Support Worker or NDIS Provider can change life for the better in so many ways. From platforms like Kynd to more traditional-style organisations, finding the right support shouldn't feel like mission impossible. You have options!
What Type Of Providers Can I Use?
Before you launch into the task of finding Disability Support Workers or NDIS Providers, it’s important to consider how your NDIS funding is managed.
This is because not all NDIS funding management types offer the same amount of flexibility when it comes to the type of support you'll receive and who provides it.
Different Types Of Support Providers
There are many different types of support providers–but what it all boils down to is your individual need and the type of NDIS funding you have.
To summarise, though: if you’re Self-Managed or Plan-Managed, you have the most options regarding the types of support providers you may use. If you’re NDIA-managed (or agency-managed), you will not have the same flexibility when it comes to choosing providers.
Platforms Like Kynd
Using an online platform like Kynd opens up a world of possibilities.
Typically offered in the form of an app and website platform, online platforms bring together Independent Support Workers from a diverse range of people and backgrounds, displaying them all in one handy spot for you to browse through.
You can use filters and sort NDIS Providers based on your individual needs and interests. Maybe you want a Support Worker for your teenage son that has an interest in gaming and basketball, a current WWCC check and a qualification.
Using Kynd gives you the flexibility to choose people based on specific needs.
Independent Support Workers
Beyond online platforms, you may also wish to peruse Facebook groups, ask community members or chat with friends for ideas on finding Support Workers. Once found, you can even BYO with Kynd.
Be careful though:
Some of the ideas above (like if you're finding and asking around for Support Workers on Facebook or Gumtree) don't give you any assurance or safeguards.
That's why at Kynd, we're big believers in building smart safeguards through verifications, 3rd party assistance and technology. It's the safety system.
Ensure your Support Workers are fully verified and that ongoing checks exist.
People and Organisations can apply to become Registered NDIS Providers.
However, did you know that about 90% of all NDIS Providers are unregistered?
When it comes to NDIS Providers and Support Workers, unregistered doesn’t equate to unreliable or unskilled.
As most NDIS Participants are now using Self or Plan Managed funding types, the majority of NDIS Participants are able to use unregistered Providers - and they do!
When it comes to finding Disability Support Workers, a Provider is unlikely to be able to offer the range of choices and flexibility that online platforms offer. They are also likely to have set fees, service agreements that can't be negotiated, manual processes and offer limited choice in what schedules or people are available.
Traditional agencies might employ or contract their Support Workers directly, so they're likely to have still been through a screening process and worker reviews.
What Type Of Provider Is Right For Me?
The type of Provider that’s ‘right’ for you depends on your individual needs and the way your NDIS funding is managed. With the help of technology we see lots of NDIS Participants now preferring the choice and safeguards of online platforms.
Start Your Research Early
The more you plan your support, the easier things will be (or the easier things become!). Make sure you figure out the kind of support you need and the best Providers that are right for you as soon as possible, so you can make the most out of your NDIS funding.
The longer you leave it, the more likely you are to make a rushed decision.
Being prepared will always save you time once your NDIS application is approved.
- Review your goals - Make sure that the plan you’ve established during your Planning Meeting still accurately reflects your needs.
- Plan your budget - Make the most out of your funding by planning your budget and supports ahead of time.
- Choose a Support Coordinator or Plan Manager - Building the right support team can make a world of a difference when things get overwhelming.
- Find and choose the right NDIS Providers - Whether you’re choosing unregistered or registered providers, make the decision that's best for you.