Navigating the NDIS application process as a Culturally and Linguistically Diverse (CALD) person with a disability may present its own set of challenges. Many Australian communities comprise individuals from all over the world, however, due to cultural differences, language barriers and lack of information, eligible CALD participants may be missing out on needed NDIS support and services. To make things easier, here are a few ways to navigate the application process successfully.
Explaining NDIS for CALD clients
The first thing for navigating the NDIS application process is understanding what the NDIS is and what it provides. NDIS is a government-funded program for people with disabilities to access support to live ordinary lives. The NDIS offers various supports, including personal care, assistive technology and community access. For a smooth NDIS application process, potential participants, including CALD individuals, must gather information about NDIS to find a plan tailored to their specific needs. They can do this by accessing translated materials, seeking help from interpreters or attending information sessions for CALD communities.
How to gather supporting documents
Any NDIS application process requires individuals to provide supporting documents. These documents include medical assessments, records and evidence of disability. CALD individuals might face challenges in gathering these documents due to language barriers and difficulties getting appropriate medical services. It’s possible, however, to overcome the barriers by seeking help from health providers or community organisations. The organisations can help navigate the process and arrange the documents needed, help with translation and even interpretation services.
How to seek support from a disability support organisation?
Some Disability Support Organisations may offer additional help when CALD individuals are applying for NDIS funding. They may assist in filling out the forms and putting together the supporting documents. They might also provide support after application submission, CALD individuals can feel more comfortable getting assistance from an organisation that understands their cultural needs and values. There are many CALD specific Advocacy services that may also be able to support through the process, many of these services will have bi-lingual staff and resources.
Understanding your NDIS plan
It’s necessary to understand your NDIS plan to know its support and services. It may include personal care, daily living assistance, equipment, and home modifications. Additionally, seeing the funding allocated to each support or service is vital. This determines how much you can spend on each one. The NDIS plan also includes goals and objectives tailored to your needs. They should be updated and reviewed in case changes need to be made. The tips below will assist you in understanding your plan.
- Understand your goals
The NDIS plan includes your short and long term goals. However, individuals must make the goals clear and attainable. They must also ensure the support and services included in the plan align with what they have set out to achieve with them.
- Look through the plan carefully.
Understanding your NDIS plan is vital to cater for all your support needs. So, it’s crucial to read through and understand what it entails. It’s vital to make sure all the supports and services are included in the plan, and funding is sufficient to cover everything.
- Know your funding
The NDIS plan comprises of funding for the support and services you require. It’s crucial to understand how the funding works and be aware of any limitations.
- Seek help if need be.
For CALD individuals, the NDIS plan application might be a challenge due to some barriers. If it comes to this, seek help to understand the NDIS system. There are support services that will assist you in making the process easier such as interpreters and disability advocacy services.
- Review the plan often.
The NDIS plan is flexible; you can review and update it as your needs and goals change. Reviewing the plan helps make the necessary alterations. It will help you receive the support and services you require if or when things change.
What are the cultural considerations when understanding your NDIS plan?
CALD individuals with a disability may face obstacles in understanding the language and terminology in the NDIS plan. When this happens, asking questions and seeking clarification from an NDIS planner or support coordinator can be crucial. Additionally, getting an interpreter or seeking support from Multicultural Advocacy services will help individuals understand the information. CALD individuals might face additional challenges, however below are cultural considerations to keep in mind:
- Cultural beliefs and practices
CALD individuals might have cultural beliefs and practices that are important to them. Therefore, they must be respected, with support and services aligning with their needs.
- Language barriers
The language barrier may hinder CALD individuals from understanding their NDIS plan. It’s crucial to have interpreters accessible to help. Additionally, also confirm if the information is available in a language the individual understands.
- Family involvement
Involving family in work is essential in many CALD backgrounds. Ensuring the family is involved in the NDIS planning process can be beneficial. Always consider their input when developing the NDIS plan.
- Access to cultural support services
Cultural support services like CALD disability support services or ethnic community organisations will offer culturally appropriate support and assistance in navigating the NDIS system.
Understanding the planning process
Once the submission of an application is made, the planning process starts. This involves plan development that outlines the support needs and goals of people with disability. CALD participants can benefit from getting an advocate for planning meetings, which can include interpreters to be present. This can help ensure cultural beliefs and practices are considered and support needs are understood.
Potential CALD participants can navigate the NDIS planning process better with the help of interpreters and ethnic community organisations to help overcome any barriers that are keeping essential support services away from them. This also makes for better community building and contributes toward a more inclusive Australia that celebrates the differences that make each Australian unique.
If you have any questions regarding your NDIS plan, please don’t hesitate to contact our team at 1800 63 63 77. We are available to address any inquiries you may have.