NDIS Goals: A Step by Step Guide
Your NDIS goals are a very important part of your plan. They are basically what you want to achieve – whether it’s to find a job, or learn a certain skill. These goals are notified to your local area coordinator during plan meetings/reviews. Your NDIS funding is used to purchase different supports and services so that you can achieve these goals.
Your goals can be very broad such as getting a job, or more specific such as learning Microsoft Excel to be used in an accounting job.
They can also be short term or long term.
Creating NDIS Plan goals
Step 1: Prioritise your goals
Choose your biggest, most important goal for yourself – what is something you really want to achieve? Take some time to think this through – it could be learning to pronunciate certain words as a way of improving your communication skills. For example – “be able to pronunciate words clearly and speak well”. If you want to get even more specific you could say something like “improve my enunciation by 50%” at the end of the plan. This will require you to think quite deeply about your life and what you want to achieve!
Step 2: Find supports for these goals
Decide on what supports you will need to accomplish this goal – in the case of improving speech and enunciation, a speech pathologist would be a suitable option. Other options may be using social and community participation if your broader goal of improving your pronunciation is to communicate with others and make friends. In your case it may be something else. It all depends on the big picture. A method that may simplify things is to have a main very broad goal and then breaking that into other mini goals.
Main goal: get a job as an accountant
Mini goal 1: Learn basics of accounting
Mini goal 2: Learn Excel
Mini goal 3: Learn Xero
Mini goal 4: Get experience working as an accountant e.g. working at an internship or part time position
Mini goal 5: Improve speech enunciation by 50%/ to a level where you feel confident enough
Mini goal 6: Make connections with others in industry
Once you’ve broken down the main goal, prioritise which mini goals would be most important to achieving the main goal.
Step 3: Contact the support provider and create a service agreement.
The next step is to start deciding what support providers can actually help you with your main goals (and mini goals). For example for the first mini goal “learn Excel” you might look at the NDIS Price Guide, and decide to enrol in an Excel accounting course. Now it’s important to note that NDIS doesn’t actually cover the cost of the course or equipment but they will cover:
- help to build your basic work skills
- supports to help you move from school to further study, training or work
- supports not available through DES to find and keep a job
- training for your teachers or work mates about your individual disability support needs
- personal care during work or study
- travel to and from work and study in some situations (see transport guidance).
This is only covering work and study support/Capacity Building: Finding and Keeping a Job. There are many other goals and areas in the NDIS such as Improved relationships, Improved Health and Wellbeing etc. So it is worth considering these other areas, however prioritising always helps!
Step 4: Monitor your funding carefully to ensure that you don’t overspend in one area.
Now that your supports are in place, it is important to not only monitor your progress with your goals carefully but also monitor your funding as well to ensure that you have funding left in all your services.
Example: if you overspend your funding to achieve a “improving communication/speech” goal, you might not have enough funding for a “improve relationships” goal. Your plan manager can help make you monitor your funding and create a budget for you so you can properly achieve your goals. You can’t achieve your goals if you don’t have any funding so it’s important to ensure you are coordinating funding properly.
Important points to mention – you don’t want to have a plan that has too many goals at once: this can be confusing and make it hard to keep track of everything. It may sound cliched but less is more, it is better to prioritise your most important goal first, before worrying about the other less important goals. Having too many supports services can also be very draining and will make managing your funding more difficult.