Creating a voice for the Disability Sector
Creating a voice for the Disability Sector
Respite for participants and carers is vital

Respite for participants and carers is vital

23 November 2021

Not only do National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) participants need access to respite care, but so do Australia’s millions of carers so they can continue being the supportive person their loved one needs.

There are almost 2.7 million carers in Australia, which makes about one in 11 of us carers.

Families and carers provide essential help for people living with a disability and support that could otherwise be provided by formal services or paid support workers.

They are often one of the greatest advocates for people with disabilities, providing practical and emotional support to help them live their best life.

Moreover, if the person they care for wants it, carers play a vital role in supporting them to join the NDIS, set their goals and use their NDIS plan effectively.

In addition to the government-funded programs available to support carers, an NDIS participant might use funding in their plan to access respite.

Respite supports participants and their carers by giving carers short breaks from their caring responsibilities. It also gives participants time away from their families.

For a participant, this might mean:

  • Joining a new community group.
  • Having a short stay out of home to try new things, make new friends or develop new skills.
  • Temporary periods of extra personal supports so that the participant can remain at home when families and/or carers are not available.
  • Support to participate in community activities, resulting in a break for carers.

For carers, taking some time off can help them better manage their own health and improve their wellbeing.

In deciding whether to fund or provide support, the NDIS will take into account what is reasonable to expect from families, carers, informal networks and the community.

More information for carers and how to include respite in an NDIS plan is available on the Carers Australia website.

Carers Australia advocates and lobbies on a wide range of issues that affect carers. It also manages the delivery of national programs, support and services for carers across Australia.

Carers Australia works in collaboration with carers, Carers Associations, government and peak bodies to develop policy, advocacy, programs and events to improve the lives of Australia’s 2.7 million carers.

Also, talk with your Local Area Coordinator (LAC) or Planner on what supports might be available in your local community.

Short Term Accommodation, which includes respite, is funding for support and accommodation for participants to spend a short time away from their usual home.

It covers the cost of their care in another place for up to 14 days at a time.

Participants might have a short stay with other people, or by themselves. It’s often funded when their usual carers aren’t available, or for participants to try new things.

Again, speak to your LAC or Planner to find out what suitable respite accommodation services are available in your particular area.

Find out more about respite here.

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