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Explained: Your core supports budget and how to make the most of it

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It’s normal to feel overwhelmed by the different budget support categories in your NDIS plan. We are here to help explain the core supports budget and how to get the most out of it. 

There are three types of supports budgets that may appear in your NDIS plan: core, capacity building and capital. Your NDIS planner will tailor your NDIS plan with funding connected to achieving your goals and supporting you in your day-to-day life.

CORE SUPPORTS 

The core supports budget is funding to support the everyday tasks that relate to your plan and life goals. It’s quite flexible across the four support categories that make up the core supports budget, and it is up to you how you spend it. You can choose to spend your funding interchangeably between the support categories to better suit your needs. For example, you may prefer to spend more of your total core funding on meal preparation and less on taxi expenses. Your support coordinator and plan manager are experts in all things NDIS and can help you to understand how to use your NDIS plan flexibility to get the best outcome! 

01: Assistance with Daily Life 

Name on NDIS portal – “Daily Activities”.  

This category will cover all your expenses related to assisting you to undertake daily tasks. This could include: 

  • Meal preparation, personal care, cleaning or gardening. 
  • Assistance with laundry – linen service. 
  • Access to alternative living arrangements. 
  • Short and medium term accommodation and assistance (including respite care). 
  • Supported independent living options. 
  • Assistance with daily life tasks provided in a residential aged care facility. 
  • Support coordinator to help you put your plan into practice, connecting you with supports and budgeting. 
  • Nursing care to assist with your disability-related health needs. 

02: Transport 

Funding to cover transport expenses related to the impact of your disability, such as: 

  • Taxi expenses if you are unable to access public transport. 
  • Specialised transport services to get to school or other educational facility, employment, or out in the community. 

03: Consumables 

Funding to pay for everyday items and low risk/low-cost products, like: 

  • Products related to your disability like nutritional supplements or continence products. 
  • Interpreting and translating support. 
  • Auslan or Signed English Training. 
  • Low-cost assistive technology for personal care and safety such as modifed cutlery or hand rails to improve your independence and/or mobility. You may also use these funds to do minor repairs to aids and equipment (assistive technology) for example wheelchair tyre puncture repair. 
  • Low-cost assistive technology for prosthetics and orthotics. 

04: Assistance with Social, Economic and Community participation  

Name on NDIS portal – “Social, community and civic participation”. Covers cost to access and participate in the community, such as: 

  • Community, social or recreational activities in a range of environments such as in a community setting or centre. 
  • One-to-one support to assist you with attending a social outing, holiday, camp, class or specific interest/hobby like art, music, drama class. 
  • Participate in sport and exercise including joining a sporting club. 
  • Help going to a community event such as the movies. 
  • Transport to and from activities including cost per km, parking, road tolls and public transport fares. 
  • Support to maintain your current employment. 

Making the most of your core supports budget 

There are lots of ways to use your core supports budget so you’re getting the best value for your funding.  

Be creative 

As the core supports budget is flexible you can make it work for you and choose the services that best suit your life. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box! Is there a low-cost assistive technology such as an app that could help you to achieve smaller tasks in your day-to-day life? Could you have hand rails installed in the bathroom or around the house to improve your independence? 

Get the best price 

The majority of our clients have most of their NDIS funding allocated to the core supports budget, so making the most of this is important. Researching providers and finding a provider with competitive pricing can make a big different to your budget. One of the benefits of being plan managed is that you can use any provider, whether they are an NDIS-registered provider or not. Providers who aren’t NDIS-registered generally charge below the NDIS price guide. But it’s important to do your research, ask questions and trial a provider to find one who best suits your needs. 

Plan your budget 

The core supports budget funds your essential everyday tasks and it also needs to last the whole way through your plan. This is where budgeting is important, as you don’t want your core budget to run out before your plan ends. Do the sums on your everyday expenses and work how much it will cost (roughly) to fund for the duration of your plan. If you’re a client of My Plan Manager, we can help you with budgeting, and our online client portal helps you view and track your funding so you can see what you’ve spent and how much you have left. If you’re not a client yet, find out how we could help you manage your plan. 

To find out more about the other types of funding (capital supports and capacity building supports) or other NDIS lingo check out NDIS Category Confusion or NDIS Dictionary: Breaking down the jargon

If you have any queries about how to use your funding please contact us via phone or email and we will be more than happy to assist. 

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