New learning package prepares family system workers for NDIS
A new professional learning package developed at the Parenting Research Centre is helping Victorian child and families system workers gain skills and confidence around the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS).
The Victorian Department of Health and Human Services commissioned us to develop the new e-learning package to help build the workforce’s capacity as the NDIS is extended across Australia. The package will help workers support families to navigate and participate in the NDIS.
Frontline workers’ expanded role
Parenting Research Centre Senior Project Manager Dr Naomi Hackworth, said frontline child and family workers now have an expanded role. They are supporting families to recognise if a disability is present and helping with eligibility requirements.
“This package will help them identify and support families where a child or parent has a disability,” she said. “Also, it will help them help families access and navigate the NDIS services and supports they need.”
All eligible Victorians now have access to the NDIS. The scheme was rolled out to the last remaining regions in the state in January 2019.
Four interactive NDIS modules
The Parenting Research Centre worked closely with DHHS and the workforce to develop the materials. There are four e-learning packages and associated resources such as workbooks. The interactive modules, which take about 20 minutes to complete, are:
- An understanding of disability. Increases knowledge about issues faced by families experiencing disability, skills for identifying disability and the support needs and effective ways of working with families experiencing a disability
- An understanding of the NDIS. Covers NDIS eligibility, access and planning, an understanding of the NDIS roles, funded supports and planning around local services, resources and supports available to families
- Working with eligible families. Focuses on working with eligible NDIS families to optimise the support they can receive
- Collaborating with families and the NDIS. Aims to increase workers’ skills in collaborating with families and the NDIS. Also ais to help them provide integrated services and get best possible outcomes for families with a disability.
Wide access to learning materials
We also held eight workshops across Victoria to introduce child and family system team leaders to the learning package.
Dr Hackworth said Victorian child and family system workers in agencies including integrated family services, child protection, out-of-home care, Child FIRST and The Orange Door could now access the online materials .
“We hope the new learning package will help ensure vulnerable children, young people and families experiencing a disability are fully supported,” she said.
“This will help them optimise the opportunities presented by the NDIS.”