Laura Hughes of Tamworth finds independence with the NDIS.

SUCCESS STORY: Justine Reilly and daughter Laura Hughes are pleased with the transition process through the NDIS. Photo: Peter Hardin 160517PHE006

SUCCESS STORY: Justine Reilly and daughter Laura Hughes are pleased with the transition process through the NDIS. Photo: Peter Hardin 160517PHE006

NDIS? What is it? here’s the background

A scheme that will guarantee all Australians with a permanent disability individually-tailored care and support, regardless of where they live or how they acquired their disability.  Here’s an article from day dot. 

Laura’s Story:

AT 22-years-old Laura Hughes has found independence with the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS.)

While her mum Justine Reilly works of a weekend, Laura has the choice to do what she wants and can be spotted shopping, cooking, watching the football or out and about with one-on-one support.

Laura has Microcephaly and she and her mum are happy with the NDIS so far. The process was made easier with the help of Challenge Community Services and St Vincent De Paul.

“Since we have changed over we have one-on-one (support) added to Laura’s program, we’ve only just started taking advantage of that with weekend support..doing things that Laura wants to do,” Mrs Reilly said.

“So her care needs are covered for that.”

“I found it very easy, but I had supportive staff at Challenge,” she said.

“There was no possible way we would have done it without them.

“We also had Jane from St Vincent De Paul help aswell and she has been there to help us through the transition.”

Mrs Reilly said she hopes in the future the NDIS would allow Laura to be covered for accommodation services if she wishes to head away.

“We still have to fund that part of it, but all her care needs for support are covered which is fabulous,” she said.

“I think we were one of the fortunate ones, it was all done very quickly.

“We have had no negativity about the time process, or anything.

“We were very fortunate, we knew exactly what path we wanted to go down and have been very interactive with Laura’s program all the way through.”

Stephen Doley

Stephen Doley

What the provider says:

THE National Disability Insurance Scheme will benefit Tamworth residents in the long run, but there’ll be hurdles along the way, a disability provider has said.

Ten months on from the July 1 rollout of the NDIS, Challenge Community Services has successfully transitioned 161 Tamworth participants to the program.

Deputy CEO Stephen Doley said adequate funding and speed of the transition were major hurdles the disability provider had to overcome, but he hopes it is smooth sailing from here on in.

“The NDIS has had it challenges,” Mr Doley said.

“Navigating the scheme for people with a disability and service providers has been difficult on occasions. 

“We have had really positive experiences for people and others have struggled in getting adequate funding and supports within their plan. 

“On a few occasions we have had to send plans back and work with the agency to ensure people get the supports they require. This causes frustrations for all involved.”

Mr Doley said Challenge welcomed a review underway into pricing for the insurance plans and were waiting for the outcome.

“When implemented well and the process is completed correctly we have seen some fantastic examples of people receiving funding for their needs and we have been able to facilitate outcomes for these people. 

“We have seen a significant increase in people wanting to come to Challenge and have us help them navigate the scheme. 

“We would welcome anyone to make contact with us and have one of our NDIS experts work with them.”

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