Family Support

The Family Support Program provides flexible and responsive support to families with a child/children with a disability who have high and complex needs. These supports are designed to strengthen families' ability to care for their child/children with a disability as well as continue to care for all family members.

The Family Support Program provides supports for the child/children with a disability as well as the whole family. Family Support assists families whose needs are not being met by the current service system. Families who access family support may require long-term assistance or may simply need support to overcome a short-term crisis.

Aims of the Family Support Program

The aims of the Family Support Program are to:

  • strengthen the capacity of families to care for their child/children with a disability
  • assist families to build formal and informal supports
  • assist families to increase their knowledge, skills and confidence
  • support the inclusion of children with a disability in community life
  • reduce family crises.

Principles of the Family Support Program

The Family Support Program is based on family centred practice and uses an holistic approach to supporting families:

  • respecting individual families' lifestyles, values and stated priorities in caring for their child/children with a disability
  • identifying and recognising families' strengths and parenting expertise
  • taking account of other factors not directly related to the child's disability which impact upon family functioning
  • considering and addressing the needs of other family members when necessary
  • assisting families to identify and build a range of informal supports around the whole family
  • being responsive to family crises or immediate needs
  • assisting families to plan and develop individualised, flexible and responsive supports that can change over time as the families' needs change
  • tailoring supports to meet families' needs rather than supports being driven by existing service types

How does the Family Support Program operate?

  • assisting with short and long term planning
  • Linking families to a range of informal and formal supports
  • Providing personal support to families.

The relationship between the staff and the family is critical to the success of the Program. This relationship is a partnership based on trust, respect and open communication. The staff's role is to empower families to identify their needs and assist families to make key support decisions for their child/children and family, and obtain the support they require.

There is a range of supports and services that might be accessed in this program. In recognition of the diversity of families' needs the program aims to support families in flexible and responsive ways. The types of supports accessed should be in keeping with the lifestyle of the family, their customs, traditions and cultural background.

The supports and services that a family may access include but are not restricted to:

  • In-home support and assistance
  • Recreational options
  • Information and training for families and care providers
  • Specialist support and advice
  • Support during school holidays and vacations
  • Respite
  • Domestic home help
  • Support for parents and siblings
  • Support for social activities

While the Family Support Program aims to assist with demands associated with caring for a child/children with a disability, it is not the program's intent to provide income support to families.

Professional support staff work with families to achieve their goals and provide flexible approaches to meet each family’s unique needs.

2023 Fee Schedule