Understanding the NDIS

What is NDIS?

There are close to 4.3 million Australians living with a disability. Many of these people are unable to access the proper disability support they require—this is where understanding the NDIS explained

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) provides funding to eligible Australians who have a permanent and significant disability. This funding covers the reasonable and necessary supports and services that relate to a person’s disability in order to help them achieve their goals and live their life to their fullest.

NDIS Services - A lady and Girl Smiling

What are the benefits of NDIS?

The NDIS is helping people with a disability all over Australia. Learn more about why and how it can help you too.

NDIS Services - A lady and Man Smiling

How is the NDIS delivered?

The NDIS is delivered across all states and territories in Australia with the help of two main partners in the community:

  • Local Area Coordinator partners (for participants aged 7-64)
  • Early Childhood partners (for participants aged under 7)

Both organisations are available to help participants navigate, coordinate and access the NDIS, as well as find and connect with the relevant services and support providers within the community and disability sector.

How does the NDIS work?

Understanding the NDIS can be overwhelming, so we’re here to break it down for you.

What it means to be an NDIS participant

Australians living with a permanent and significant disability who are eligible for the NDIS will become NDIS participants and therefore receive funding. This funding is in place to help participants work towards their goals and improve their everyday lives. These goals are set out in an NDIS plan. Each plan will be unique to the individual as each individual will have unique goals.

In order to achieve these goals, participants will work with NDIS service providers who will support them through their plan. The service providers may be professionals such as physiotherapists, speech therapists or occupational therapists. Your plan may also require you to work with a support worker, engage a carer, access assistive technology or have home modifications completed in order to help you in everyday life.

Essentially, the support you receive will depend on your goals, and no matter what that looks like the NDIS is in place to support it.

NDIS Services - A lady and Girl Smiling

Am I eligible?

Learn more about the eligibility criteria of the NDIS and if you meet the requirements to become an NDIS participant.


A lifelong disability that significantly impacts an individual’s ability to complete their day to day activities.

According to the NDIS, early intervention is providing support as early as possible, to a child or an adult, to reduce the impact of developmental delay or disability. The goal of early intervention by NDIS is to support an individual’s independence by helping them build their skills. More importantly, providing supports early to reduce the future impact of their disability.  

Before an individual has their NDIS planning meeting with their local area coordinator or planner. It is always helpful to evaluate your current needs and living arrangements, before your meeting. This will help you understand and make changes in your current situation. By discussing with your NDIS planner, about your goals and aspirations.

Understanding the NDIS can be overwhelming, and a Local Area Coordinator (also pronounced as L.A.C) work with the NDIS community partners to support an individual applying for NDIS or using their plan to make the most out of it. 

LACs can support you in many ways:

  • Understanding and accessing your NDIS plan, this may include face-to-face, or telephonic conversation with you about NDIS or even workshops.
  • Developing an NDIS plan for individuals who are eligible for NDIS supports and services.
  • Assisting an NDIS participant throughout their plan by connecting them with various service providers.
  • Reviewing your plan to make important changes or apply for support funding.

An NDIS goal of a participant could be anything. It could be as simple as making new friends or building independent skills. A goal is basically things you want to achieve and pursue to maximise your independence. 

Your goals are an important aspect of developing your NDIS plan. Your goals help the NDIS to understand you better including the things that are important to you and your life. Your goals can also help you with:

  • Motivation to try different things that involves building your independence.
  • Helping you understand your strengths and how they can be used.
  • Something that you want to achieve for example pursuing a higher education.

The National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) makes decision on an individual’s eligibility for NDIS supports and services. Also based on the amount of funding they will receive, and if they are considered ‘reasonable’ and ‘necessary’.

No, the NDIS is not a welfare system. To help individuals with significant and permanent disability by supporting them to build their skills and independence over time. The form of support can be anything, such as assistance with showering, meal preparation or finding employment.  

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