NDIS submission: The power of parents
In August 2023, the Parenting Research Centre actioned the opportunity to contribute to the review of the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
We fully support the NDIS Review’s aim of putting “people with a disability back at the centre of the NDIS”, but also highlight that family-focused approaches must be kept in sight, including allowing funding to be used to support the capacity of families to address the child’s needs.
We see parents as the most important source of support for their child with a disability. Parents are not simply ‘consumers’ of services but are critical ‘agents of change’ who are best positioned to have the greatest positive impact on their child’s life.
Our submission focuses on the following key messages as critical for supporting the healthy development and wellbeing of children with a disability and for the Panel’s consideration in the NDIS Review:
- Parents are their child’s most important support. Parents are also critical agents of change in the lives of their children. For young children in particular, the role of the parent must be considered central to any child-focused intervention or support.
- Parents of children with a disability are showing increasing levels of distress over time – and these levels are higher than for parents of children without a disability.
- A concerning proportion of parents of children with a disability are facing parenting challenges, which is likely to impact negatively on children.
Parent-mediated supports for children are key for improving developmental outcomes for all children – including children with a disability. But challenges in the current context and state of the NDIS are creating barriers to accessing NDIS-funded supports beyond those that are delivered by professionals directly to children.
Our submission draws attention to the power of parents in increasing awareness, clarity, access and funding in relation to parent-mediated interventions and parenting supports. In turn, this will achieve stronger child developmental outcomes, enhance the child’s participation in the community, and place the child at the centre of everyday family life.
- Read our submission: Parenting Research Centre – NDIS Review Submission (Aug 2023)
- More about the NDIS Review: https://www.ndisreview.gov.au/