NDIS Capacity Building: Improved Relationships

The purpose of the Capacity Building Category in your NDIS plan is to help you become more independent, learn new skills, determine your own future, and participate in your community. Funded activities and services must be directly related to your disability, determined to be reasonable and necessary, and connected to your NDIS plan goals. The NDIS Improved Relationships supports are for both long-term and more immediate intensive interventions to address behaviors of concern and improve communication skills. The goal is to develop positive behavior, encourage social interactions, and build a strong support system.

NDIS Improved Relationships Supports Provide

  • Specialized assessments for unidentified or complex behavioral needs
  • Specialist behavioral Intervention
  • Behavior Management
  • Social skills development 

NDIS Specialized Assessments

blankBehavior, language, and communication assessments are used to better identify the supports needed to enable the individual to better participate in daily activities and improve their interaction with others. Potentially harmful or persistent behaviors of concern are detected and can be addressed in a positive support plan. This plan is then used as a framework to help diminish or eliminate challenging behaviors that stem from cognitive or intellectual disabilities. It is important to understand the root cause of such behavior, consulting with the patient, their family, caregivers, and other support systems. A behavior of concern or challenging behavior is an unpredictable and complex action that significantly impacts the individual’s learning, safety, or relationships. This can include verbal and physical aggression, impulsive actions, damaging property, and inflicting self-injury. Specialized assessments are used to develop evidence-based behavioral strategies to meet the specific needs of the individual, improve relationships, and enrich their life.

NDIS Specialist Behavioral Intervention

blankThis area of NDIS Improved Relationships funding offers behavioral intervention to assist in the reduction of management of behaviors of concern. This includes services such as an anger management program or behavioral psychologist.

  • Highly specialized intensive interventions to address immediate and significantly harmful or persistent behaviors of concern.
  • Includes the development of a behavior support plan necessary to reduce the risk of harm to themselves or other people.
  • May temporarily use restrictive practices, with the goal of reducing or eliminating the use of these interventions. Restrictive interventions may include physical restraint, mechanical restraint, chemical restraint, environmental access restraint, or seclusion.

NDIS Behavior Management 

blankThis area of NDIS Improved Relationships funding will cover the cost of developing a behavior support plan and behavior management training for caregivers and families. These are the strategies needed to safely reduce or eliminate behaviors of concern, due to the individual’s disability. A behavioral support plan is a written plan to address inappropriate behavior, outline the strategies that will be used to improve the specific behavior and assist in building positive behaviors. This plan may include improved communication, expanding relationships, use of clinical interventions, and teaching strategies of the plan to others that interact with the individual on a regular basis.

  • Clearly defines the behaviors of concern and patterns of challenging behavior.
  • Identifies the triggers of each of the behaviors.
  • Creates an effective plan of strategies to reduce or eliminate these triggers.
  • Trains caregivers, families, teachers, and other support people in safe and effective strategies to eliminate and reduce the behaviors of concern.
  • Assists in building positive behavior patterns to replace or diminish challenging or dangerous behaviors.

NDIS Social Skills Development

blankThis area of NDIS Improved Relationships funding will assist the individual in the development of their social skills. The goal of this support area is to assist the individual in learning and practicing their social relationship skills to encourage and improve participation in community and social activities. Improving relationships means being aware of how we communicate with others. Social skills development is about learning how to do that more effectively to increase their inclusion, social participation, and independence.

  • Use of verbal and nonverbal communication; including use of words, body language, facial expression, eye contact, and spatial boundaries.
  • Teaching the 6 necessary social skills of effective communication, active listening, empathy, conflict resolution, respect, and relationship building.
  • Individual, group, and online learning opportunities for social skills.
  • Assistance to engage in group community, social and recreational activities.
  • Learning time management skills.

NDIS Activity-Based Transport

This area of NDIS Improved Relationships funding will pay for travel costs incurred by the individual while participating in activities related to their NDIS improved relationships goals.

  • Assisting with transportation needs to attend community and other activities.

Types Of Therapeutic Support With NDIS Improved Relationships

Therapeutic Supports

blank1-on-1 or group support sessions help to develop healthier relationships and improve wellbeing. 

Whether having feelings of anxiousness, depression, anger, confusion, or being overwhelmed, therapeutic support can help identify coping strategies and capabilities. 

Behaviour Management Strategies

blankA behavior management plan provides a strategy so you can learn to positively manage your behavior and emotions in a controlled and positive manner.

Behaviour Supports

blank1-on-1 access to a behavioral therapist ensures you will get the support you need. Your behavioral specialist will sit down and talk with you, your caregivers, family members, and service providers to identify unwanted or distressing behavior, and work together to create a plan to help manage these feelings in a positive way.

Social & Peer Support

blankPeer support groups can be a very effective form of therapy. Support comes from your peers or those that have lived through a similar experience. These types of support groups make you feel supported by your peers in a friendly, social, and safe environment. You can share your experiences and challenges with others that understand. 

How You Can Help In Developing Your Child’s Social Skills

Children with disabilities often lack the social skills of their peers, especially those with developmental delays or intellectual disabilities. More than 70% of Australian children live with some type of disability, making life much more difficult. Social skills are often less developed than other children their age. People can be quick to make assumptions about their ability to participate in groups and exclude these children from social, community, and recreational activities. Your NDIS Improved Relationships supports can help, but you can too. Here are 5 ways you can assist your child in learning essential social skills and improving relationships.

1.) Teach the importance of body language

Body language is an important part of nonverbal communication and successful interaction with others. This includes eye contact, facial expressions, keeping an open and non-threatening posture, and the use of appropriate gestures. Set a good example by using proper body language yourself. Identify other people using good body language. Practice at home by role-playing different situations your child may encounter.

2.) Practice conversation

Making conversation may be especially challenging for children with developmental delays or intellectual disabilities. You can help them improve their conversation skills. Make good eye contact and make sure you have their attention before you start talking. Use simple words and short sentences. Ask questions that require more than one-word answers. Give them extra time to think before they respond and don’t rush to talk during pauses. Show you are listening by repeating back what they have said. Encourage questions. Avoid correcting them while speaking or getting frustrated if they are struggling during the conversation. This will only discourage them to continue or try again. Find common interests to make the conversation more fun. Take turns talking and listening so they learn how to balance a conversation with others. Be patient and end on a positive note. Let them know they did a good job to encourage future attempts at conversation.

3.) Create a positive place for social interaction

It is important to provide a place to promote socialization to practice and improve social skills. Generate opportunities for social interaction. Encourage eye contact and communication using games and activities with others. Coach in following social rules and norms and give behavior prompts as needed. Be a good role model and keep social interactions positive and pleasant.

4.) Encourage socialization

Parents, family, caregivers, and teachers play a vital role in learning and improving social skills. Encourage social interaction at any appropriate opportunity. Arrange play dates with other children. Attend social events and activities for children with disabilities. Meet other children facing similar challenges. Join a group or therapy program teaching social skills. This will provide additional structured opportunities to practice and improve specific social skills.  

5.) Provide role models

Emulating others is a natural and effective way for children to learn. Provide good role models in social skills and behavior for them to watch and interact with. Include children both with and without disabilities in social activities. Provide opportunities to interact with adults that use positive social skills and behavior. Watch movies, television shows, and social media that feature or include individuals with disabilities. Use books, games, and other activities to teach and practice social skills.

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