Self-directed support

The self-directed approach

The self-directed approach means that the person with a disability is at the centre and, to the extent that they are able, in charge of the planning, design and implementation of the services and supports they need.

People can consider who is best able to provide those supports. This includes informal supports, community supports that all people use and, where needed, funded disability supports.

The self-directed approach means the person is at the centre of decision-making in relation to:

  • planning based on their expressed goals and disability-related support needs
  • deciding what supports they need and who will provide them
  • knowing how much funding they are allocated, managing it wherever possible and being able to take it with them if they change services or where they live
  • taking responsibility for their decisions.

Where the person with a disability is a child, their parent(s) or guardian(s) direct the planning, funding and supports so that they are family-centred. That is, the supports they require may both directly support the child and also the family/guardian in their caring role.

Further information

Read the self-directed approach to supporting people with a disability in Victoria information sheet.

Examples of self-directed support

Evaluating the transition to self-directed support in Victoria

The department has engaged Dyson Consulting Group to evaluate how the introduction of self-directed support via Individual Support Packages (ISPs) has contributed to outcomes for people with a disability and their families and carers. Dyson will also look at what can be done to improve the way in which ISPs are implemented. The evaluation commenced in March 2011 and will be completed by June 2013.

How can I get involved?

To date Dyson has hosted a series of forums and interviews across Victoria with people with an Individual Support Package (ISP), their family and carers, disability service providers, peak/industry organisations and the department.

Dyson has also developed two on-line surveys (one for individuals with an ISP and one for service providers) to give people the opportunity to provide feedback about their experiences with ISPs.

Further information

Supporting decision making

A key component of self-direction is to recognise that people can and should be able to make decisions about the important things in their lives to the best of their ability and wishes. A number of documents have been developed to make sure that people get the support they need or want to help with making decisions.

Peer support

Peer support is when people share what they have learned from their experiences with someone on a similar journey. Some people describe it as talking with someone who has 'walked the walk'.

Who to contact for further information

For people with a disability and their families:

The Disability Intake and Response Service is the key point of contact.

This service will connect you to your local office and is available Monday to Friday from 9am– 5pm on 1800 783 783 or TTY 1800 008 149.

For disability service providers:

Contact your local departmental program and service advisor.

  • Peer support

    Peer support is when people share what they have learned from their experiences with someone on a similar journey. Some people describe it as talking with someone who has 'walked the walk'.

  • Supporting decision making

    The freedom to make decisions about things which affect our lives is a right that everyone should enjoy. Some people with a disability may need help to make decisions and tell others about their choices.

Contact information

Phone: 1300 650 172
(local call fee within Australia, except mobile phones)
Fax: (03) 9096 9140
TTY: (03) 9096 0133
(for people who are deaf or have a hearing, speech or communication impairment)

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