Through the Inclusion Ready project CSIA is supporting organisations to strengthen capacity and prepare for Information Linkages and Capacity Building (ILC) grant applications.

We can see that this is working!

ILC grants provide information linkages and referrals to connect people with disability, their families and carers, with broader systems of support and builds the capacity of community organisations to meet their needs.

We sat down with Lisa Steele, the Inclusion Ready facilitator and Senior Sector Support Officer from National Disability Services, to break down the findings behind this growth.

In this blog Lisa breaks down the recent grant recipients and provides some strategies on what you need to consider to be successful in the next round of ILC funding.

Success for Queensland ILC applications

The NDIA recently released its Summary of Funded Activities for the ILC National Information Program, which closed on 10 May this year.

The National Information Program’s objective is to ensure that people with disability are connected and have the information they need to make informed decisions and choices.

In this grant round $65 million has been committed to 37 organisations, delivering projects up to three years’ duration. These projects will be expected to commence in November.

Lisa took us through the funding results and reflected on the changes she noticed first-hand throughout Queensland while delivering Inclusion Ready ILC grant workshops this year.

“Compared to the last grant round we see an increase in funded ILC projects in Queensland from 9% to 13%.

“This is a significant increase and shows more engagement and understanding in the state of what contributes to a successful ILC project,” said Lisa.

The following diagrams break down the past two grant rounds comparing the number of projects being delivered in each state.

“After delivering 28 workshops across 17 regions of Queensland this year we know that participants’ knowledge and confidence about the NDIS, ILC and inclusion increased significantly after the workshops by up to 25%,” explained Lisa.

“Understanding about the ILC and the NDIS was greater in some areas than others.

“In those areas and/or groups where greater understanding was needed, a more tailored approach ensured participants left feeling more confident and knowledgeable about the ILC grants and their relevance to their organisation,” Lisa reflected.

Lisa broke down the funded projects further identifying that as with other ILC grant summaries, disability services made up half of the successful recipients. Not-for-profits and community services accounted for approximately 25% each, with one application from a tertiary institution.

Projects were focused on 13 disability types including intellectual disability, psycho-social and neurological disabilities. The highest funding levels were across multiple projects relating to autism, psychosocial and intellectual disability, receiving $10,547,411, $9,074,534 and $8,061,932 respectively.

“While there is no doubt that most funded projects included aspects which engage target groups, only six projects specifically mentioned a focus on these.

Two projects targeted each of the following groups: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, Culturally and Linguistically Diverse and LGBTIQA+ communities,” explained Lisa.

Identifying the gap in ILC

Lisa points out the importance of collaborating with and including the voice of people with disability in your inclusion project to identify the need you are addressing.

“Many people with disabilities and those working within the disability sector understand where the gaps are and are well positioned to start the conversations with key stakeholders to address the gaps through the development of innovative, collaborative, meaningful ILC projects,” Lisa said.

Lisa posed the following questions to think about to strengthen your inclusion project:

  • Does your grant project address a genuine gap? ILC will not fund gaps that are currently in receipt of funding.
  • What challenge is your project responding to? What change do you want to see and why? Draw on your knowledge of your local area and understanding of the needs of your participants.
  • What evidence do you have to support addressing this challenge? This could be surveys, audit reports, ABS statistics, participant feedback, etc.
  • If you don’t have any evidence, what can you do? Form relationships with your local university or TAFE college. What research has been done in this area? Or, what research could be done in this area to support a pilot project?
  • Who could be key collaborators in this project? Chances are you will need partnerships to help deliver your project. Collaboration and partnerships are a key element of ILC projects.

“Understanding and articulating your project is vital. Getting the basics right and planning well in advance of the opening rounds, will help get your project over the line,” explained Lisa.

Transform your business through inclusion

The NDIS provides an important business opportunity for your organisation and ILC is a great way to kick start your inclusive idea.

Identifying the gap your project is filling is just one element of preparing your inclusion project for an ILC funding application and transforming the way you do business.

Lisa is running ILC workshops across the state where she will take you on an in-depth journey to ILC success.

The workshops cover the social and economic benefits of inclusion, how to design and build ILC projects and the critical success factors your project design needs to incorporate.

For more resources, information and stories on ILC success and the social and economic benefits of inclusion of people with disability visit Inclusion Ready.