How to use NDIS funding to start your own business | MyCareSpace
Start your own business

How to use NDIS funding to start your own business

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MyCareSpace recently presented a webinar titled: How use your NDIS funds to smash barriers & create innovative post school options (employment, social & community participation)

We spoke about how to start a business (a micro enterprise) and the BIG question on most people's lips was "how can I use my NDIS funding to start a business?"

We asked Libby Ellis of InCharge - an organisation that helps people start a very small business or micro enterprise - to give us some ideas about how funding could be used for different aspects of a micro enterprise.

She told us to remember that it really makes life easier if you are self or plan managed. If you are NDIA managed (also called Agency managed) you will need to find or negotiate with a registered provider who can deliver a more personalised approach based on the services and tasks you need assistance with. If you have a Support Coordinator, this kind of research and negotiation is something they can help with.

In principle, it is good to think about the kinds of things that might act as a barrier to you in starting your own business because of the impact of your disability. Then, how could your NDIS funding reduce or solve that barrier?

Some examples might be:

  • Help you think about your skills, strengths and interests and link these with a business idea
  • Assist you develop a business or marketing plan
  • Find others who can help you make a business or marketing plan
  • Help to understand legal issues
  • Help to find legal advice
  • Organising the systems you need - for example, recording your stock or money management
  • Assist you to make your product or deliver your service
  • Having equipment that helps you work in your business more independently
  • Teach you the steps of making your product or delivering a service
  • Creating visual or other supports which help you do your job
  • Learning behaviours which are appropriate to your business  - for example customer service skills

InCharge is part of a project that supports people with disability in western Sydney and western NSW who want to learn about starting a small business.

If you live in western Sydney or the lower Blue Mountains you can find out more here. You can also check out the group's Facebook page here

If you live in Dubbo you can find out more here

Here is a list of other ideas and their NDIS funding support categories: 

Examples of Assistance You Might Need

NDIS Support Categories   

NOTE: If your categories include something called a 'Stated Support', this means you must use the funding for that particular item only.

Daily or Weekly Assistance
If you need daily or weekly assistance from a skilled support worker to make your product or deliver your service (sometimes called business assistant or mentor).

Core support

If you need assistance to find and assess Assistive Technology that allows you to work in your business more independently.

If you could benefit from the creation of a skills development program for you and your support workers to follow. 

Low risk technology that allows you to work in or on your business more independently.

Improved Daily Living

Assistive technology (AT in NDIS speak)

Core support for low risk assistive technology

Specialist Style Consultancy Support
  • if you need a more qualified person to help you to build certain skills
  • develop a business plan
  • assist you develop pathways to markets and customers
  • develop a team of people who volunteer to help you (like a business management group)
  • (basically all the business stuff in the background that you might not be able to undertake fully because of the impact of your disability)

Increased Social and Community Participation
(maybe) Finding and Keeping a Job.

Core Support if you are self or plan managed and feel you can dedicate the funds  

Training
Finding training or courses and help you access them - for example the Federal Government’s New Enterprise Initiative Scheme (NEIS) or TAFE or get the certificates you need.

Support coordination

Core support if you are self or plan managed and feel you can dedicate the funds

Increased Social and Community Participation.

Support
Find and employ the daily/weekly support workers you need.

Find other experts to assist you – for example business mentors

Develop a team of people who volunteer to help you (like a business management group)

Help to access other financial support

Research

Support coordination

Core support if you are self or plan managed and feel you can dedicate the funds.

Other Resources

Here are organisations that support employment, provide mentoring or help start a business:

 

NSW

SA

VIC

WA

Role: 
Both