Communities and Justice

Joe’s plan

Joe is of Aboriginal background and will be 17 next month. Joe has Autism and is in a supported class at school and receives help with some daily living tasks.

In a pre-planning casework meeting Joe tells his caseworker his goals are:

  • Move into a house with help with household tasks and personal care (semi-independent living)
  • Leave school at the end of the year
  • Work for a restaurant where he did work experience
  • Obtain a Cookery traineeship and RSA Certificate.

The DCJ caseworker organises a meeting with his NDIS Coordinator of Supports (COS) and carer to discuss his leaving care goals and what supports the NDIS could possibly fund to assist him. Joe has known the NDIS COS worker and caseworker since he was 15 – when leaving care planning started. Joe has been actively involved in the annual reviews with staff. At the meeting Joe tells everyone what his goals are. The following supports are discussed:

  • Allied Health Supports (all therapy, including funding for Functional Assessments)
  • Behaviour Support (including Specialist Behaviour Support and training for carers)
  • Social and Civic Participation funding to help build community living skills and pursue social and recreational activities
  • Employment, School Leaver Employment (SLES) or day activities support once the YP has left school.
  • Support Coordination. E.g. to help him manage his NDIS plan, look at options for independent living or residential care
  • Flexible support for the teaching of living skills including at home.  E.g. Hands-on assistance with personal care.
  • Flexible support for accessing the community
  • Accommodation Support (the model will be based on a functional assessment)
  • Transport allowance

Joe asked the COS if he makes a friend during the cooking class will NDIS help him maintain a friendship? Joe said because of his Autism sometimes keeping friends is hard. The COS staff member said that his NDIS plan funding may be able to help to organise catch ups at coffee shops etc. on the weekends if that is what he wanted.

Joe’s caseworker confirms what is in his NDIS plan now and what they need to do as the next steps, for example, a functional assessment and report will be required to obtain funding to assist his leaving care goals. This report will be used when finding accommodation. There are a number of options that will be explored such as Supported Independent Living group homes, in-home drop-in support and specialist disability accommodation.

The caseworker informs Joe that NDIS Support Coordination will be important to help him manage his NDIS plan and assist him with his goal to live in semi-independent living. The caseworker tells Joe that NDIS have packages for Supported Independent Living.  Joe is aware that finding appropriate accommodation will take time. Joe’s DCJ caseworker searched for ‘disability accommodation’ on the internet.  The caseworker then forwarded completed Expression of Interest forms for disability housing to Support Coordination before submitting them to the accommodation agency.

Joe wants to complete the 2 year Smart and Skilled Commercial Cookery traineeship. This goal is in his DCJ financial plan. NDIS will support Joe to achieve his goal by helping him do his cookery homework.  NDIS will also help Joe learn how to use public transport to enable him to travel independently to the cooking school.

The other goal Joe has is to complete the Responsible Service of Alcohol (RSA) training once he is 18 years old.

Measure of Wellbeing – Social / Living Skills and Peer Relationship

Expenditure Type Used for Items requested  Rationale Cost

Education and Training

Education or vocational training to assist with course fees or the purchase of books, tools or material to start further education. Joe needs his own tools to obtain the qualification and improve his employment prospects.

The caseworker will accompany Brandon to support his attendance and engagement and ensure his history is provided accurately.


This plan illustrates how the NDIS plan supports Joe’s disability needs and complements his leaving care plan. In addition, it illustrates the importance of services actively working with each other. For example, in this instance sharing information with the NDIS Coordinator of Supports.

At the end of the year School Leaver Employment (SLES) funding should be requested to be included in Joe’s NDIS plan so all his employment options can be explored. The RSA will be added to his leaving care plan once the Smart and Skilled Commercial Cookery traineeship is completed.  The Smart and Skilled Fee-Free Scholarships are available to people who are aged 15-17 years and currently in out-of-home care or aged 18-30 years and previously have been in out of home care. Also Smart and Skilled provide fee exemptions to Aboriginal students.

All of the above information will need to be provided to the planner at Joe’s next NDIS review meeting so that disability supports needed to assist him with his goals can be built into his plan. Note that if an item is related to the young person’s disability and is deemed reasonable and necessary it will be likely to be funded. If the requested item or service is universal – the item or service more than likely will not be funded by NDIS.  For example, calling an Ambulance.

For further information on working with young people who have a disability watch the videos on Michael and Jeremy’s stories.

An overview of the National Disability Insurances Scheme can be found here.

Practice point – Joe’s plan is more complicated than most and definitely benefited from involving other services in the planning. It will be important to maintain connections and his caseworker should see if Joe will agree to accept regular follow-up calls, at least for the first 12 months after he leaves care.

All care leavers should be offered follow-up contact as the sudden withdrawal of their caseworker can leave them feeling isolated. Also, they may not have the confidence to ask for help if things go wrong. Proactive casework ensures that what was planned is implemented, e.g. that the young person was accepted into a service, has remained engaged, and the service is meeting their needs. Regular follow-up allows challenges to be identified and addressed before they escalate to crisis.

Last updated:

01 Mar 2023