The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is about improving services for people with disability and building inclusive communities that will be better for everyone.
This is why the NDIA has an Information, Linkages and Capacity Building (ILC) Program, including grant opportunities to encourage communities to be more inclusive of people with disability.
To help you get ready for ILC activities in Queensland, the Community Services Industry Alliance (CSIA) is partnering with National Disability Services (NDS) to help you, your organisation and your community better understand inclusion and how you might contribute.
Through the project, the collaboration will deliver a series of workshops around inclusion and how to apply for the ILC grants. You will also receive access to useful resources, examples of inclusive projects and tools.
As part of its role within the partnership, National Disability Services (NDS) will be delivering around 30 workshops across the state in the coming months.
The workshops will focus on the import role inclusion plays within a community and how the ILC grants work.
Within NDS the ILC project will be managed by Ian Montague. Ian is no stranger to the community services sector having a long history delivering strategic business advice and support in organisational roles and through his own business. This is coupled with the ten years he has been a board member for a not-for-profit organisation in the community services industry.
Ian is passionate about helping Queensland organisations to create sustainability for the delivery of their services and supports which, he says, will make their communities better.
“I’m excited to be part of the inclusion and ILC conversation, while delivering these important workshops,” Ian said.
“Across the community services sector there is a lot of care. People are in their roles, delivering services and support because they want to help others live their best possible life”.
“There are businesses, community groups, clubs and the wider community who also want to find ways to help people with disability be included but are not sure where to start.
“This project and workshops are about assisting these people and groups in their planning and will provide tools to give them a better chance of success with their ILC grant applications. Having a clear understanding of inclusion that aligns with what’s important to people with disability will help you create offerings for people and develop evidence for grant applications,” he said.
The discussion of inclusion is something that everyone in the community – business owners, community groups, service providers, clubs – should understand and build into their day to day routines. These workshops and accessible resources are focussed on making this an easy process.
“Inclusion is something we should all be talking about. All Australians should enjoy participation in ordinary life, regardless of levels of ability,” Ian said when defining inclusion.
“People with a disability provide a positive contribution to their local community as participants, organisers and leaders.
“Interestingly, the Productivity Commission report [that led to the establishment of the NDIS] found that inclusion can enhance Australia's 'social capital’. That is, inclusion encourages the networks of relationships among people who live and work in a particular community, enabling that community to function effectively.”
During the workshops Ian will bring his understanding of community economic drivers and business acumen to help pinpoint the benefits of inclusion for each organisation.
“An inclusive community empowers and enables people with disability as customers and service users, which supports their local economy,” he said.
“People with a disability also add to a region’s economic performance as employees, employers and entrepreneurs”.
“And this is backed up with findings from the Productivity Commission report that found that the inclusion of people with disability in the workforce can have economic benefits for the community.”
NDS will be delivering the workshops across Queensland. Find your local workshop here.