Developing Life Skills for Independent Living

Developing Life Skills for Independent Living

ConnectAbility helps you develop vital life skills for independent living.

Supported independent living is a transformative approach that empowers adults with disabilities to lead fulfilling and autonomous lives. By providing the necessary tools, resources, and support, we can help individuals with disabilities navigate the path toward independence. Here are ways to prepare a person for supported independent living:

Assess individual needs and goals.

What are their unique needs, strengths, and aspirations? A comprehensive assessment will help identify areas of development, personal goals, and areas where support may be required. This evaluation will serve as the foundation for creating a personalised plan.

Develop life skills.

Develop life skills.

Focus on developing essential life skills that promote independence. These skills may include communication, self-care, money management, household chores, transportation, meal planning, and personal safety. Participate in community programs, vocational training, or educational courses that enhance your skill set and foster self-confidence.

Build a support network.

Establishing a strong support network is crucial for successful independent living. Connect with local disability organisations, support groups, and community resources that provide assistance, information, and social opportunities. Build relationships with peers who share similar experiences, fostering a sense of belonging and camaraderie.

Explore assistive technology and adaptive equipment.

Explore the use of assistive technology and adaptive equipment to enhance independence. These tools range from mobility aids to communication devices and smart home technology. Work with specialists and professionals to assess specific needs and identify appropriate solutions to facilitate autonomy and accessibility.

Learn about financial planning and benefits.

To support independent living, learn about financial planning and the benefits available. This may include understanding government programs, eligibility criteria, and financial management strategies. Seeking guidance from financial advisors or professionals with expertise in disability-related financial matters is recommended.

Get familiar with transportation options.

Explore transportation options that promote mobility and access to the community. This may involve researching accessible public transportation, coordinating specialised transportation services, or exploring mobility training programs. Learn navigation skills and study the public transportation routes in your area.

Know about housing considerations.

Assess housing needs and explore appropriate options. This may include finding accessible housing, coordinating necessary modifications or accommodations, or exploring supported living arrangements. Connect with local housing agencies, disability services, and advocacy organisations for guidance and support in navigating the housing landscape.

Develop personal advocacy and self-determination.

Become an advocate. Practice self-determination, decision-making, and expressing your needs and preferences. Know your rights, speak up, and take an active role in your own support planning and decision-making processes.

Ongoing training and support

Ongoing training and support.

Recognise that the journey towards supported independent living is ongoing. Address evolving needs and goals with continuous training, education, and support. Stay connected with therapists and service providers that can provide guidance, resources, and assistance when needed.

Foster a positive mindset.

Above all, foster a positive and empowering mindset. Believe in your potential and abilities. Celebrate your achievements, embrace challenges, and stay in a nurturing environment that promotes self-confidence and resilience.

How to access independent living support

Accessing Supported Independent Living (SIL) through the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) involves several steps.

1. Determine eligibility.

You must first determine if you are eligible for the NDIS. The NDIS eligibility criteria include age requirements, residency status, and the presence of a permanent and significant disability. You can visit the NDIS website or contact their helpline for more information on eligibility requirements.

2. Make an access request.

If you meet the eligibility criteria, you can make an access request to the NDIS. This can be done online, over the phone, or by completing a paper-based access request form. Provide relevant information about your disability, functional limitations, and support needs.

NDIS planning meeting

3. NDIS planning meeting

Once the access request is accepted, a planning meeting will be scheduled so you can meet with your NDIS planner. During the meeting, discuss your goals, aspirations, and support needs. SIL can be included as part of your NDIS plan if deemed necessary and reasonable.

4. Developing the NDIS plan

Following the planning meeting, the NDIS planner will develop an individualised NDIS plan based on the information you provided. The plan outlines the support, services, and funding allocations. If SIL is included in the plan, it will detail the specific supports required for independent living.

5. Review and approval

The NDIS plan is then reviewed, and once approved, you become an NDIS participant. The plan will specify the funding allocated for SIL, along with any other support and services included in the plan.

6. Finding a SIL provider

With an approved NDIS plan, you can start searching for a SIL provider. The NDIS Provider Finder tool on the NDIS website can help you locate registered SIL providers in your area. Consider factors such as the provider’s experience, expertise, location, and ability to meet your specific needs. Contact potential SIL providers to discuss their services, availability, and suitability. Arrange meetings or visits to assess their facilities and understand the supports they offer.

Service agreement and implementation

7. Service agreement and implementation

Once you have chosen a SIL provider, you will need to establish a service agreement that outlines the terms, conditions, and expectations of the arrangement. The service agreement will detail support, costs, and funding arrangements for SIL.

It’s important to note that the process may vary slightly depending on individual circumstances, and it’s advisable to seek assistance from the NDIS or a support coordinator to navigate the access and planning process effectively.

When you’re ready to take the next step, we are here to support you.

If you are ready to embark on this empowering journey, we encourage you to explore the valuable resources available at ConnectAbility. Take advantage of the opportunity to connect with like-minded individuals and contribute to a community of growth and empowerment.

Accessing supported independent living through the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) opens doors to a world of possibilities for individuals with disabilities. It’s a journey of empowerment where you can gain the support you need to live independently.

Supported independent living is more than just assistance; it’s a pathway to self-determination, personal growth, and better quality of life. With the right support in place, you can navigate your day with greater autonomy, build meaningful connections, pursue education or employment opportunities, and participate fully in your community.

Contact us today on 02 4962 1000 for our Warabrook office or on 02 4349 3700 for our Central Coast office for more information.

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