Opinion 9 May 2017

Is NDIS really as scary as people say it is?

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Lochlan

If you have a child with a disability and never have been eligible for financial assistance before, the NDIS is like the answer to your dreams. To be able to write a plan with no limits, no thinking about the cost, no thinking where will I get the money from. I can tell you this was a dream we would have never thought possible.

When we got our child’s diagnoses 11 years ago we quickly went into action, researching therapies and sourcing therapists. We soon found many therapists could help but the cost was going to be great. Over the past 11 years both my husband and I have changed jobs to suit our family’s needs, both worked two jobs when needed, sold our dream family home for a cheaper one and even had financial support from Grandparents when we just couldn’t find that extra money for the much needed therapies.

With all of this, we still would not change a thing, because without these therapies our beautiful young man would not be talking, would still be self-harming, would not be able to look after his own self-care and most importantly would not be interacting with his family and peers.

So when we first heard of this thing called NDIS, I thought really? Could this really happen let alone be what they are saying it’s going to be?

I was one of the people who thought, this is too good to be true, but hey lets apply and see what happens. Anything is better than nothing right?

Yes the process was challenging, frustrating, time consuming and ridiculous at times but for us we had never received any financial support previously, so at least with NDIS for all the work and time there was actual real financial assistance at the end of the tunnel.

Since starting our plan, our financial stress has just about dropped to nothing. It will take time to rebuild what we have spent, even dare to dream of a new family home. But I can say for sure we now have money for family holidays, social events and life’s little extras which previously was spent on therapy.

Embrace the NDIS

So I guess that’s the reason why I am sharing this with you, as I am not normally someone who likes to share personal things about myself, or my family, is.

Why are people fighting the NDIS? It’s time to embrace the NDIS.

Yes the process was always going to be hard, yes you still have to fight for what your child might need, but let’s keep it real. The process is challenging, it needs to be to enable the correct people to access the support. We need to make sure we are getting value for the money we receive.

But most importantly we need to stop fighting the NDIS and stop scaring people away from the NDIS. Every couple of weeks I meet a family who has not applied for the NDIS as they have been told by others it is a waste of time. Who are you to mess with our people’s lives, give vulnerable families false information. This makes me so angry!!!

This beast NDIS is real support for many people who have never received anything. We need to support it, embrace it, help the government mould it into what our children need.

The NDIS is changing people with a disability lives for the better, so it’s time to get on board and stop whinging on Facebook or telling other families don’t do it. If you have concerns do something about it because if we don’t help turn NDIS into what is supposed to be, who will?

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