There are services to help if you are supporting someone with a disability. The following information and links may be useful.
National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)
The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is Australia’s first national Scheme for people with disability. It moves away from the previous system of providing block funding to agencies and community organisations, to direct funding for individuals.
The NDIS can provide all people with disability with information and connections to services in their communities such as doctors, sporting clubs, support groups, libraries and schools, as well as information about what support is provided by each state and territory government.
Contact NDIA on 1800 800 110 or go to www.ndis.gov.au
Local Area Coordination Service and Early Childhood Early Intervention Service for Bayside Peninsula
The role of the Local Area Coordination (LAC) and Early Childhood Early Intervention Service (ECEI) is to assist people to navigate the NDIS. As a part of these services, they will provide planning and coordination for people with disability to maximise choice and control over the services they use. This includes supporting people with disability to navigate mainstream services and increase their capability to be an active part of their community. ECEI services will specifically support children 0-6 years with a disability or developmental delay.
For LAC and ECEI services in Bayside Peninsula Area phone The Brotherhood of St Laurence on 1300 275 634 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
For LAC services in Southern Melbourne (including City of Greater Dandenong, Casey and Cardinia) phone La Trobe Community Health Service on 1800 242 696 or email@example.com
For ECEI services in Southern Melbourne (including City of Greater Dandenong, Casey and Cardinia) phone Link Health and Community on 1800 546 532 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Organisations assisting with NDIS transition
This alphabetical list of organisations is dated November 2017.
Time for a Break
Carers who live in Southern Melbourne will find helpful information in the publication Time for a Break. The publication has been produced by MOIRA since 1991 and is a guide to respite care for people with disabilities and their families. You can access Time for a Break online 24 hours a day at moira.org.au. The online version includes links so you can access service providers directly. Read Time for a Break.
Carers Victoria is a not-for-profit organisation which provides advice, information and support to carers to improve their health, wellbeing, capacity and resilience. www.carersvictoria.org.au
Respite is available in many forms. Your local Council is a key contact if you are seeking respite in the home, or to ask about any other services they offer.
Services will vary between Councils. Contact your Council to discuss the available options. Below is a list of telephone contacts for each council in the southern metropolitan region:
Through the Maze
The Association for Children with a Disability publish Through the Maze. This handy booklet includes information about services and supports for children with a disability and their families living in Victoria. You can download a copy from the Association for Children with a Disability website.
Regional Quick Guide - Southern
The Regional Quick Guide complements the Through the Maze booklet, available from the Association for Children with a Disability. It has contact details for local services and supports. You can download a copy from the Association for Children with a Disability website or click here.
Rebates and financial assistance information
This resource has been compiled by Alfred Health Carer Services to assist carers of children with a disability but some of the information will be relevant to others also. It contains a range of information gathered from public domains about the various medical and allied health rebates available, as well as some other forms of available financial assistance. You can read the latest copy here.
Making a Start: Building Support for your Child and Family is a booklet which gives an overview of what early intervention is, written in easy to understand language with a workbook component to help families identify the supports that their child needs.
Free online learning modules from Positive Partnerships offer parents and carers the opportunity to build skills and knowledge about a range of issues related to supporting a person with autism through various life-stages.
The DIY Autism Spectrum Starter Kit from Windermere aims to gather a basic level of information about a person’s ASD related needs and behaviours and to give some basic ideas about meeting these needs and preventing behaviours of concern.
Alphabetical list of supports:
Anglicare: Parentzone is a quarterly newsletter for parents, filled with information about local supports. www.anglicarevic.org.au/newsletters
Amaze: is the peak body for autism in Victoria. They offer regular information sessions for parents and carers at their office in Carlton. www.amaze.org.au
Aspect (Autism Spectrum Australia): offer two day intensive workshops for parents and carers of someone on the autism spectrum up to age 25, as well as Early Days webinars for parents and carers of a child with autism aged 0 –7. www.autismspectrum.org.au
Association for Children with a Disability: offer a range of parent-led information
sessions upon request. These are free for parent support groups. www.acd.org.au
Brainlink: supports the families and friends of those who are living with an acquired brain
disorder arising from stroke, head injuries, or brain tumour, as well as progressive
neurological diseases. They offer a range of social activities that people with brain disorders can enjoy with their family and friends, as well as specific activities for carers. www.brainlink.org.au
Cerebral Palsy Support Network: Offer a range of information and other supports to parents and carers of someone with cerebral palsy. www.cpsn.org.au
Down Syndrome Victoria: is the peak body for Down syndrome in Victoria. They offer a regular information series for parents and carers at their office in Fitzroy. They also run a network of support groups statewide and can put you in touch with other groups in your area. www.downsyndromevictoria.org.au
Genetic Support Network: provides a point of contact for individuals and families seeking information and support about genetic conditions. They also maintain a large list of condition - specific support groups. www.gsnv.org.au
Irabina Childhood Autism Services: works with families of children on the autism spectrum, across the eastern and southern regions. They have a comprehensive education and training calendar for parents as well as for professionals, in both their Bayswater and Pakenham locations. www.irabina.com to find out more.
MS Australia: Offers services to people with MS, family members, friends and carers. They also have a carer support program in the southern region, run in collaboration with Brainlink. www.mssociety.org.au
MyTime: MyTime groups provide support for mothers, fathers, grandparents, and anyone caring for a child with a disability or chronic medical condition. Please visit www.mytime.net.au for more information, including how to find a group.
Parkinson’s Victoria: People with Parkinson's, their carers, friends and family are all welcome at the many support groups around Victoria. There are at least four in the southern region. There are also regular education events. Young At Park (Y@P) is a social group especially for people living with Young Onset Parkinson’s, and their families. Visit: www.parkinsonsvic.org.au
PlayConnect: PlayConnect playgroups are part of the Helping Children with Autism package. They offer play activities suited to the needs of children aged 0-6 years with ASD or ASD like symptoms but are not early intervention therapy. Find out more at: http://www.playgroup.org.au/Old-Site/Programs/PlayConnect.aspx
Positive Partnerships: delivers the two components of the Helping Children with Autism package implemented by the Australian Government Department of Education. These include face-to-face two-day workshops and online learning which presents self-paced learning about supporting school aged children with autism . Visit their website to find out more: www.positivepartnerships.com.au/
Windermere: offers a range of disability services in the Casey-Cardinia-Dandenong area. They also run regular Resilience for Life programs. This is an interactive program for adults living with disabilities, or carers of people living with disabilities, to increase positive coping skills to better navigate challenging life experiences, and effectively manage the associated feelings – to be resilient for life. www.windermere.org.au
Yooralla: offers the Breakaway Flexible Respite program in the eastern and southern regions. This has short term funding for planned respite. Visit www.yooralla.com.au or call 9831 5600.