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Participants and Providers work with NDIS to improve processes

The Board and Executive Management team of the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) wish to provide information to the Scheme’s existing and potential participants, their families, carers and providers regarding major work that is underway to deliver a significantly upgraded quality of participant and provider experience in a way that remains consistent with maintaining the Scheme’s financial sustainability.

An improved participant and provider experience will be grounded in the NDIS’s aspiration to facilitate improved economic and social outcomes for participants. As was always the original intent of the NDIS, better outcomes for participants, based on the Scheme’s insurance approach are intended to produce a long term economic and social dividend for Australia. That was the vision on which the NDIS was founded. That is what the disability community supports. That is what we, our staff and community partners are committed to delivering.

Participants in the initial Trials, which started in 2013, are already reaping the benefits of their involvement with the NDIS. A survey of 23,400 NDIS participants, families and carers demonstrates these results. Participants who have been longer in the Scheme are becoming more independent; they are able to exercise greater choice and control; they are experiencing stronger social, educational and employment outcomes; children’s development has improved; and students are more able to attend mainstream classes.

Notwithstanding these positive results, it is now well recognised that before the commencement of transition to full scheme in July 2016, the quality of the NDIA’s internal preparation warranted significant improvement. The NDIA’s processes and systems have not resulted in a participant and provider experience during Transition that is of the consistently high standards that the NDIA expects. While the need to improve processes is not entirely unexpected given the ground breaking nature of the reform, the NDIA recognises the important need to learn from these early experiences and improve and adapt its processes as quickly as possible. The Board, management and staff of the NDIA are unequivocally committed to delivering a much better experience for participants and providers based on an outcomes driven approach.

To that end, since early April 2017, the NDIA has been working individually and in workshops with more than 200 participants, providers, peak disability bodies and other stakeholders from all States and Territories to identify what needs to improve and how that might occur. Productivity Commission submissions outlining improvement opportunities have also been recognised, as has feedback from the Independent Advisory Council and views expressed at the Joint Standing Committee.

From that process, 400 specific improvement ideas and 200 solution concepts have been generated. Detailed work is currently underway to incorporate participants’ and providers’ insights to ensure the NDIA delivers a high quality, outcomes focussed participant and provider experience that is simple, clear and accessible, at the same time as ensuring the Scheme’s financial sustainability. While a new integrated end to end approach has yet to be finally tested with participants and providers, the proposal is likely to include a greater outcomes focus throughout a participant’s life; more active involvement with communities; more face to face (rather than telephone) communications; fewer participant transfers; an easier to navigate portal; a more responsive call centre experience; and significantly improved interactions with providers and disability organisations. Having learned from the past, the final proposal will be tested with participants and providers before it goes live.

The NDIA is acting expeditiously to implement this revised and more integrated end to end approach for participants and providers. Many standalone improvements that are consistent with the proposed longer term approach will be put in place as soon as possible while we continue to bring new participants into the Scheme.

The NDIA is committed to getting the proposed approach right. As a result, full implementation, which will be dealt with as a matter of priority, may take somewhat longer because of the need to retrain staff; implement systems changes; and significantly improve communications.

The NDIA also wishes to assure participants, that despite misleading press reports, there is no policy directive to cut the amount of supports in plan packages. At all times the level of supports provided in a participant’s plan will be based on what is determined reasonable and necessary under the NDIS Act.

During the interim period, until the full proposal can be implemented, the NDIA will work hard to actively engage with stakeholders and to provide information on progress. In turn, we ask for your ongoing goodwill and patience.

Yours sincerely

David Bowen

Chief Executive Officer

National Disability Insurance Agency


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NDIS provider information sessions – for new providers

Are you interested in providing services to NDIS Participants in the Murrumbidgee and Far Western NSW areas? Are you considering registering with the NDIS as a services provider? Are you registered to provide services to NDIS participants? Are you currently providing services to NDIS participants?

The National Disability Insurance Scheme is rolling out progressively in Australia over the next two years.  In order to support individuals or organisations learn how to become providers, the National Disability Insurance Agency will be holding provider introductory sessions in line with the regional rollout.

The areas covered will include:

  • Overview of the NDIS and the participant pathway
  • How to register as a NDIS provider
  • Market information (including information about the Terms of Business, the provider portal, Reasonable and Necessary Decision Making and Payments and Pricing)

Non-registered providers are encouraged to attend.


Upcoming sessions will be held at:


Date: Tuesday 20 June 2017

Time: 9.30 am to 11.30 am

Where: Lone Pine Room Balranald RSL Club

Address: 116 Market St, Balranald NSW 2715

RSVP: or phone 0475 827 181



Date: Wednesday 21  June 2017

Time: 10 am to 12 midday

Where: Coomealla Health Aboriginal Corp

Address: 51 Sturt Pl, Dareton, NSW 2717

RSVP: or phone 0475 827 181

Organisations are asked to limit representatives to 1-2 at each session. Please contact us if you have any accessibility requests

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Loddon welcomes the NDIS

The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) will roll out to residents of the Loddon region, including Greater Bendigo, Echuca, Kyneton and Kyabram, from today – improving the lives of Victorians with disability and generating hundreds of jobs in the region.
The Hon Jane Prentice MP, Assistant Minister for Social Services and Disability Services, said it was an important day for the local community.
“The NDIS is a major shift in the way support is delivered to people with disability across Australia,” she said.
“It gives all Australians peace of mind that if their child or loved one is born with or acquires a permanent and significant disability they will get the support they need.”
According to the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) Market Position Statement for Victoria, the number of people receiving disability support in the Loddon area is forecast to grow from 4000 to 5300 in 2019.
The Loddon region spans Campaspe, Central Goldfields, Greater Bendigo, Loddon, Macedon Ranges and Mount Alexander.
Intereach will deliver Local Area Coordination (LAC) and Early Childhood Early Intervention Services in the Loddon region. Local Area Coordinators focus on participant capacity building, including plan development, implementation and review. ECEI services deliver outcomes for children and their families through best-practice and family-centred approaches.
Mrs Prentice said while people living with disability would be the primary beneficiaries, the NDIS will also deliver a social, economic and jobs dividend for the region.
“The NDIS will generate jobs and local investment and this will ensure people with disability have the assistance they need to help them achieve their goals,” she said.
“More than 800 new jobs will be created in the Loddon region over the coming years and an additional $180 million will be injected in to the local economy.”

The NDIS will boost the Victorian economy by $2.5 billion and bring more than 10,000 new jobs in disability services to the State.
The NDIS trial began in the Barwon region in 2013 and will transform the lives of 105,000 Victorians living with disability, as well as their families, carers and communities over the next three years.

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Multicultural Day in Deniliquin

Looking for something interesting to do in Deniliquin on Saturday 1 April?

Why not join us at the Deniliquin Multi Arts Centre for a day of multicultural food, dance and music!

The event aims to celebrate the cultural and ethnic diversity of our region and to encourage the participation and engagement of the whole community.
Entry to the event is free and tasting plates will be available at nominated prices.

There will also be a variety of crafts and cultural displays.

Children are welcome and colouring activities will be available.

When: Saturday 1 April 11am – 2pm

Where: Deniliquin Multi Arts Centre, Cressy St

Interested? For more information contact Martin Wilmshurst on 0417 603 385 or Wendy Johnston on 03 5890 5258.


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Ivan named as winner of competition

Introducing… iVan!

We are pleased to announce the winner of the #NameOurVan Competition, and it is… (drum roll please) Bridgette Scilini!

Bridgette’s winning name suggestion ‘iVan’ has won her an iPad mini.

Congratulations Bridgette and thank you to everyone who entered.

Intereach staff, and iVan, will be out across Greater Bendigo, Campaspe, Macedon Ranges, Mt Alexander, Central Goldfields and Loddon talking to local people about National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).

Keep up to date with iVan’s community visits here:

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Intereach Family Day Care Expo

Calling all Deniliquin parents…

Are you looking for childcare? Perhaps you are going back to work, expecting a baby, or just want to know more about your childcare options.

Join us to meet local Family Day Care Educators, and learn more about why many other local families prefer a home based setting matched to the needs of their family.

Childcare will be available on the night, along with free goodie bags, nibbles and refreshments.

When: Wednesday 15 March 2017 – 6.30pm
Where: Intereach Neighbourhood Centre, 78-80 Napier Street, Deniliquin 2710
Interested? For more information contact Rebecca Leiper at Intereach Family Day Care on Ph: 03 5890 5210 or email



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Wellness and Reablement Workshop – Albury

Do you work with older people or are you a volunteer that supports older people?
Intereach invites you to attend a practical workshop showcasing how an ‘enabling’ approach can help people you work with.
The workshop is presented by Glen Sorensen of Age Communications.

Where: Albury Manor House, 593 Young Street
When: Wednesday 1 March 2017
Time: 1pm to 4pm
Cost: $60 + bf.
Note: no cost for Intereach staff

Purchase your ticket hereWellness and Reablement Workshop ~ Albury

For more information contact:
Mel Broadbent
Intereach Community Support
Ph: 03 5890 5200 or

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Family Day Care Educator Tracey Jones with Savannah, Ashton and Indianna enjoying the rewards of their cooking experience

20 years of education and care to children in Finley

It was all smiles for Finley educator Tracey Jones recently as she was acknowledged for 20 years of providing education and care to children through Intereach Family Day Care.

In 1996 the former hairdresser made the decision to become an educator to challenge herself and explore a new career. She now reflects that it has become “so much more; it is now a truly fulfilling, rewarding and life changing experience.”

“During my time as an educator I have had the pleasure of caring for over 150 beautiful children and their families, and in some cases I have been able to care for the children of children I have cared for. They are the very special moments that family day care educators get to celebrate. We really do become an extended part of children and families lives”.

Tracey has experienced many changes to Family Day Care (FDC) over her years of service, from the initial title of Family Day Care Mum to Family Day Care Educator. The pay rate in 1996 was only $2.95/hour and there were few rules in relation to Government Legislation. Over the years with the introduction of assessment and ratings, and most recently the Early Childhood Curriculum- The Early Years Learning Framework, the level of professionalism and accountability has greatly increased. Tracey says “although some of these changes have been difficult, they have all provided the opportunity for me as an educator to grow and increase the quality of education and care I provide, while ensuring young children receive the best possible start in life”.

Tracey says that she has had many special and rewarding moments with the children through their naturally funny, curious and inquisitive personalities. While she doesn’t enjoy it when families who have used her service move away or onto school, she does get to see the children around town and is comforted by knowing she has positively impacted their life.

Tracey says she is proud of the role she has plays in the community; providing an important choice for local families in the education and care of their children. She looks forward to many more years with Intereach FDC.

Intereach support a range of local Family Day Care professionals in the region who provide education and care for children from birth to twelve years of age. Intereach work alongside the Educators to ensure that the quality of care meets National Quality Standards, reflected by the ‘Exceeding’ rating achieved in 2015.

Families are encouraged to contact Intereach Family Day Care on 03 5890 5210 or to discuss the choice of education and care options available throughout the Finley, Jerilderie, Tocumwal, Berrigan and Deniliquin areas.

Image: Educator Tracey Jones with Savannah, Ashton and Indianna enjoying the rewards of their cooking experience

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Ability Links making an impact


Ability Links NSW is improving the lives of people with a disability and their families and is having a real economic impact across the state according to two independent reports released this week.

According to the reports by Urbis, this innovative approach to supporting people with disability returns three dollars in economic and social benefits for every dollar invested, making a significant change in the lives of people with disability.


The program is delivered by dedicated staff known as ‘Linkers’ who work with people with disability, their families, and carers to build on their strengths and skills, and develop networks in their own communities outside of the traditional disability services sector.


Ability Links NSW is delivered by Intereach across Riverina Murray with Sue Mathieson saying the report highlights the importance of the program for the community.

“This report shows that when people have the right supports and are linked into their community, everyone benefits.


“Ability Links improves the quality of people’s lives resulting in more optimism for the future and sense of control over their lives. As the report shows, this flows through to real economic and social benefits that we all can enjoy.


“Ability Links works because it taps into the individual’s passions and interests whilst also tapping into the wealth of skills, connections and goodwill already within our regional communities.

The URBIS report says linked-in people report feeling safer, happier and more socially connected. People who engaged with the program also reported an increase in self-esteem and improvements in their relationships with family and friends.


Since its launch in 2014, Ability Links NSW has supported over 1282 individuals and families across the Riverina Murray and worked alongside community members, groups and organisations on 25051 occasions.


Ms. Mathieson said given the program’s success, she hoped Ability Links would continue into the future as part of, or alongside the NDIS. “With such strong evidence that Ability Links provides value for money and generates strong social and economic benefits to both Government and the broader community, we see a strong future for this program.

“Ability Links will support the sustainability of the NDIS by diverting some people away from funded supports and improving the capacity of individuals and communities.”


Ability Links NSW is a State Government program that supports people with disability, their families and carers to connect with their local community, achieve their goals and aspirations and live enriched and fulfilled lives.


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Intereach adopts the ‘Registered Charity Tick’

Did you know that Intereach is a registered charity?

The Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) Tick of Charity Registration (the Registered Charity Tick) aims to give reassurance to the public that the charity is transparent and accountable by highlighting its presence on the ACNC Charity Register.

The ACNC encourage members of the public to check the Register to find out more details about charities they support.

You can read more about the ACNC Register here:

You can view the Intereach Charity Registration here:

ACNC Registered Charity Tick

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