The NDIS is very different from the previous disability care and support system, as the scheme:
Community support enabling independence through the NDIS Person-centred practice is at the heart of the NDIS. This means that through the scheme, people with disability will have access to the services and supports they need when they need them. Increased access to services and supports under the NDIS can reduce a person with a disability’s reliance on informal supports such as friends and family. As well as enhancing an individual’s independence, this can also have significant ramifications for the wellbeing of personal relationships.
Suppose an individual has acquired their disability before 65 and is already a registered participant of the National Disability Insurance Scheme. In that case, they will have the option of continuing to receive support under the NDIS or transferring to the aged care scheme (My Aged Care) once they have turned 65. Any individual who acquires their disability over the age of 65 or over the age of 65 when the NDIS rolls out in their area will not be eligible to receive support through the NDIS.9 The aged care system has undergone significant reforms over the past few years to align with the principles of person-centeredness that underpin the National Disability Insurance Scheme.
On the other hand, personal support refers to those individualised services or supports that a person with a disability may require to overcome functional limitations with mobility, communication, daily living or self-care. Personal supports can include:
Community support acknowledges the extent to which societal barriers limit the participation of people with disability. It articulates the need for mainstream services to be accessible to people with disability to facilitate their full and equal participation in the community. Community supports could include structural modifications, sign language interpreters and other forms of live assistance, braille and easy read versions of information, and accessible bathrooms and entrances.
Contacting an organisation or community group that supports people with your specific disability can be an excellent way to meet people, get advice, and share experiences. Many national and state-based disability organisations run regular support group meetings and social activities. Some may also be active on social media and have online discussion forums to chat with others with the same disability. Many also offer support for families. Self-advocacy groups are run by people with disabilities who have joined together to hear their voices and support each other. They work together to make sure people with a disability have the same rights, choices, and opportunities as anyone else. Investigating these disability groups online can be an excellent place to start.
Belonging to a group or community we can identify with helps us develop a stronger sense of personal and collective identity. It can also boost our self-esteem and willingness to take on the world and make our dreams happen.
Humans are social beings, and the need to belong is deeply ingrained in our nature. That’s why since the beginning of time, humans have been drawn to creating their communities. Today, virtual communities continue to be formed around different shared characteristics, such as religious or spiritual groups, professional associations, neighbourhoods, volunteer groups or sports clubs.