NDIS ECEI Supporting A Family Living With Autism Spectrum Disorder
Link HC’s National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) Early Childhood Early Intervention (ECEI) program has had a major impact on our family’s life.
Our 7-year-old daughter Lola was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and inattentive Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in 2017, and our 5-year-old son Frankie was diagnosed with ASD and ADHD in 2018, as well as Childhood Apraxia of Speech (CAS) in 2017.
We entered into the NDIS process with the fear of the unknown. Would our children get the support they required? Would they be approved for the therapies their professionals had recommended?
Would there be enough funds allocated for them to achieve their goals? Would the NDIS process be easy? The answer to all these questions was yes!
Thanks to Michelle, our ECEI Coordinator the changeover to NDIS was a smooth one. She came to our home to meet our children, explained the whole process and gave us information to work on goal setting for Lola and Frankie. I completed a questionnaire on my children’s needs and another home visit was organised to establish their goals.
During this session, Michelle voiced the possibility of our 4-year-old daughter Anneke also being on the spectrum. After speaking to other professionals who agreed; we will be getting her assessed this year – but this time with a calm head knowing NDIS will give us and Anneke the support we need.
Up until February 2017, I was employed in a job I loved. Due to the needs of my children, I had to resign to give them 100% of my attention. They are only little for a short time and early intervention is key. Thanks to NDIS, I was able to do this.
The funding NDIS allocated to Lola and Frankie means between them both, they receive speech therapy six times a fortnight for both speech/language and pragmatic skills and food therapy sessions, occupational therapy (OT) twice a fortnight, psych three times a month, art therapy three times month and social group twice a month.
Over the school holidays, Lola and Frankie are attending Clubhouse boot camp which teaches them life skills as well as social and community participation.
Thanks to NDIS, we received funding to partake in activities run by Interchange. We have attended a family camp with a lot of other families, where my children enjoyed all aspects of the camp experience like the flying fox, archery and rock wall climbing. I was able to converse with other parents and friendships were made. I didn’t have to explain myself when one of my children had meltdowns, because everyone there just “got it,” they understood.
Without NDIS none of this would have been possible! We couldn’t afford for Lola and Frankie to attend therapy, I would still be working and trying to figure out if we can afford one psych session this week, or one OT session. All these worries have been alleviated, I feel like I can breathe again and try and be the best Mum I can be for our children and help them achieve their goals whilst supporting them in all their therapies.
We are not amazing, please don’t say “I don’t know how you do it”, we do it because we have to, we love our children and we just want what’s best for them. Our children just happen to have ASD, they are not defined by their diagnoses, they have different abilities that surprise us every day. They
are Lola, Frankie and Anneke and they are AMAZING!
Autism Spectrum Disorder is a lifelong neurodevelopmental condition. It is characterised by differences in behaviour, social interaction, communication, special interests and sensory processing. These differences can present people on the autism spectrum with challenges in how they interact with their environment. To receive a diagnosis of autism, these symptoms need to be evident from childhood and impair the person’s daily functioning.
Please contact our NDIS ECEI team on 1800 546 532 for more information on how we can assist you.