What are capacity building supports?
When it comes to accessing disability services with your plan, NDIS supports are split into three categories that are designed to help you achieve different goals and improve your day-to-day life. These categories are defined for funding purposes to help ensure the NDIA appropriately distributes funds to assist people where they need it most.
The three NDIS support categories are:
- NDIS core supports
- NDIS capital supports, and
- NDIS capacity building supports
It’s important that you understand the differences between each category and become familiar with what types of supports fall into each, especially if you are self-managing your NDIS plan. If you have funding for plan management, your plan manager can help you to understand your funding categories.
For this post, we are going to focus on one of the most misunderstood categories, capacity building supports (NDIS). If you’re looking for a detailed description of each NDIS support funding category, please click here.
What are NDIS capacity building supports designed to do?
Like the name would suggest, capacity building supports are designed to build on your capacity to live independently and participate in the community. In other words, these supports are all about improving your skills in areas such as building and maintaining relationships, finding and keeping employment and an improved day-to-day life.
There are nine sub-categories of funding within capacity building supports. Because everyone is unique with different abilities and goals, it is important to note that not everyone will receive the same funding and it is likely that you won’t receive funding for all nine categories.
Here is a breakdown of each capacity building support and how they assist you to reach your goals and build capacity.
- Coordination of supports. When you receive your first ever NDIS plan, it is likely that you will need assistance putting your funds into action with service providers. This category provides you with funding to access a support coordinator who can help to connect you with service providers that suit your needs.
- Improved living arrangements. Whether your goal is to live independently out of home or you are looking for shared, rental accommodation with friends, this category is all about helping you to find and maintain suitable accommodation. If you are in a rental property, this support also helps with your rental agreements and tenancy obligations.
- Increased social & community participation. To ensure you’re able to get involved within your local community and with your peers, this support helps to develop your confidence and the life skills required to enjoy social and recreational activities.
- Find & keep a job. This category is designed to support you with employment preparation such as writing your resume, work skills training and on-the-job supports to help you obtain and maintain employment.
- Improved relationships. Funding to access supports for developing positive behaviour management strategies to improve your interactions with friends, family, colleagues and people in the community.
- Improved health & wellbeing. Support to help you manage your diet and exercise, and better understand how these have an impact on your overall wellbeing.
- Improved learning. Support transitioning from school into further education such as university, an apprenticeship or TAFE.
- Improved life choices. Help with understanding and managing your NDIS plan funds through a registered plan manager such as Disability Plan Services. Learn more about plan management here.
- Improved daily living. Access to assessment, training and/or therapy at home to help build your community participation skills and independence.
The benefits of NDIS capacity building supports is that they are partly flexible, and the disability services you elect to receive can be changed as your needs change. So long as the supports you access fall within the sub-category that you have allocated funding for, are still reasonable and relevant to achieving your goals, and you haven’t over-spent your budget, you can enjoy choice, control and flexibility with your supports.
Take Justin for example
Justin has capacity building funds allocated for ‘Improved Daily Living’ that he has been utilising for physiotherapy to achieve his goal of becoming more independent. With the ongoing assistance of physiotherapy, Justin finds he is now able to achieve more on his own so would like to reduce the amount of budget being spent on physiotherapy and focus the remaining budget on other supports he needs like occupational therapy. Due to the flexible nature of his capacity building budgets and because both physiotherapy and occupational therapy fall within the ‘Improved Daily Living’ category, Justin is able to make this change and continue working towards his goals.
Does all of this sound a little complicated? Self-managing your plan can be difficult, especially if you’re still trying to become familiar with the NDIS or if you’ve had a dramatic change in circumstances. That’s why the NDIS created the ‘Improved Life Choices’ category within the capacity building budget. This gives you access to the support of a plan manager whose job it is to take care of the tricky financial management of your plan.