If you are a parent of a child with a disability, you will know how important it is to connect with others who understand your journey and organisations that can provide the information and resources you need.
Here at Leap in! we’re often asked for ideas about organisations or groups that can offer support, advocacy or safe places to interact with others who ‘get it’.
Today we’re sharing some of our resources, so you don’t need to search yourself.
National organisations and initiatives.
A place for parents and carers of children with a disability, developmental delay or chronic medical condition to unwind and talk about your experiences. MyTime offers group activities where parents can share challenges, support each other and build relationships. Groups have a trained facilitator and child care is available for pre-school aged children. MyTime is free if you meet certain criteria and there are groups all over Australia – search for your nearest group on their website https://www.mytime.net.au/
Offers support, information and fun events for siblings of children and adults with chronic conditions including disability. An opportunity for brothers and sisters to connect and share experiences with other siblings and parents with similar journeys.
More at https://siblingsaustralia.org.
Looking after yourself is easier said than done when you care for a child with a disability. Carers Australia provides valuable information and resources to help you look after you. Their website contains has a specific page on Support for Families and Carers.
A website designed for parents that includes dedicated sections on parenting children with autism spectrum disorder and children with disability. Information on the rights of children with a disability and associated laws is particularly useful.
The only Australian magazine for parents, carers and professionals of children with special needs, Source Kids contains relevant, up-to-date information and loads of personal stories. Even better, it is available online for free!
More at https://www.sourcekids.com.au/
Autism Awareness Australia
The Autism Awareness Australia website has loads of helpful information – from understanding autism and diagnosis to therapies, financial support and resources. You can also find state-based organisations for Autism Awareness online.
More at https://www.autismawareness.
A safe, supportive online community for people facing health challenges and the people who support them. With dedicated discussion forums for autism, disability, mental health, cerebral palsy, anxiety and hundreds of other topics, The Mighty allows you to easily create a profile, follow relevant topics, post a thought or ask a question of the community.
There are thousands of Facebook groups for parents of kids with a disability, many specific to different types of disability. To search, simply open Facebook (it’s easier on desktop), enter a relevant search term and filter by ‘any group’. Click on the group to find out more or +Join to request to join the group
Association for Children with a Disability (VIC)
Run by and for families and supported by a network of like-minded people. The organisation also provides phone support and delivers workshops throughout Victoria.
More at https://www.acd.org.au/
Down Syndrome (NSW, VIC & WA)
All three state-based organisations provide information and support to people with Down syndrome and their families and carers. Initiatives include prenatal and postnatal support including personal visits after the birth of a new baby, workshops, phone support and peer support groups.
There’s also an education program for students with Down syndrome that provides support and information for teachers who have a child with Down syndrome in their class.
The government’s website has a dedicated section on disability, packed with handy resources for parents including early intervention, early childhood education and going to school. There are tips for dealing with bullying, information on legal rights, useful links and support resources for carers.
More at https://www.qld.gov.au/
We can help.
If you’re a parent of a child with a disability trying to navigate the NDIS, we are here to help. As Australia’s leading plan manager, Leap in! is the perfect partner to help you prepare for NDIS Plan meetings and to make it easy to manage NDIS Plans.
We’ll answer all your questions and can even connect you with service providers. Call 1300 05 78 78 to talk to a real person or email firstname.lastname@example.org.