Making the Most of Your NDIS Funding For Autism

June 6, 2024

A young woman sits on a bed, working on a laptop. She wears headphones connected to the computer. A small dog is beside her and she is patting his head as she works.

The NDIS can be a game-changer for people with autism, providing vital support to live a more independent and fulfilling life. But navigating the NDIS and maximising your funding can feel overwhelming. We’re here to help! Here we’ll explore strategies to ensure your NDIS funding effectively supports your needs on the autism spectrum. 

Understanding Your Funding Categories

Your NDIS funding will likely be allocated across two main categories: Core Supports and Capacity Building. 

Core Supports cover everyday living expenses that are directly related to your disability. For autism, this might include: 

  • Support workers who assist with tasks like showering, dressing, or preparing meals. 
  • Transport assistance for attending appointments or social events. 
  • Assistive technology like communication devices or sensory aids.

Capacity Building focuses on developing your skills and increasing your independence. With autism, this could involve: 

  • Social skills training to improve communication and interaction. 
  • Therapy services like occupational therapy or speech therapy. 
  • Assistance with finding and maintaining employment. 

Maximising Your Support with a Plan Manager and Support Coordinator

Having a strong team in your corner is key to maximising your NDIS funding. Here’s how a plan manager and support coordinator can work together to support you: 

Plan Manager: 

  • Understands your plan: Plan managers can explain your funding categories and available supports. 
  • Develops a budget: They can help you allocate your funding efficiently across your needs, and make the most of your budget. 
  • Handles the admin: They take care of your payments, claims/reimbursements, and record keeping. 

Plan management comes at no extra cost to you or your NDIS plan. When you request plan management, the extra funding is allocated to your plan. 

Support Coordinator: 

  • Understands your needs: They can work with you to identify your goals and challenges related to autism. 
  • Navigates the NDIS: Support coordinators can assist you with understanding the NDIS system and completing paperwork. 
  • Connects you with resources: They can help you find relevant support services, providers, and advocacy groups. 
  • Reviews and updates your plan: Support coordinators can assist you in reviewing your plan and requesting changes to reflect your evolving needs. 

Finding the Right Providers 

The NDIS allows you to choose your support providers. Here’s what to consider: 

  • Qualifications: Look for providers who specialise in supporting people with autism and have relevant qualifications. 
  • Experience: Ask about their experience working with individuals with similar needs. 
  • Service Agreement: Ensure the provider has a clear service agreement outlining the services offered and costs. 

Reviewing and Updating Your Plan

Your NDIS plan is a living document. As your needs or circumstances change, it’s important to review and update your plan. 

  • Regular Reviews: Reviews can be held annually with the NDIS to discuss your progress and adjust funding allocations as needed. 
  • Unexpected Changes: If you experience unforeseen changes impacting your needs (e.g., new therapy recommendations), don’t hesitate to request a plan review. 

Remember: You have the right to manage your NDIS funding effectively. By understanding your funding categories, working with a plan manager and support coordinator, and choosing the right providers, you can ensure your NDIS supports your journey towards a more independent and fulfilling life. 

Additional Resources

This blog provides a starting point. Don’t hesitate to seek further information or assistance from the NDIA or disability advocacy organisations, or contact us for more information.