News • 16 Apr 2019
What is Supported Independent Living?
Supported Independent Living (SIL) is when people with mental illnesses and disabilities receive support, usually 24/7, to help each person live as independently as possible. This can sometimes be a group of people sharing a home together, or one person receiving support in their own home.
Many people with mental illness or disabilities are unable to live on their own or with their family, and therefore group or shared accommodation allows people to receive day-to-day support whilst living in a suitable home.
It’s important for everyone in the household to get along, so like-minded housemates can be matched based on compatibility and shared hobbies and interests.
Under the NDIS, SIL means that between two and seven people can share a home, each person with their own private bedroom.
What support is available in a SIL home?
Support is usually available 24/7 and can include:
- Help to manage money and household budgeting
- Assistance with cooking
- Assistance with cleaning and laundry
- Help to catch public transport to visit friends and family
- Personal care such as showering and dressing
- Support with grocery shopping
- Assistance with daily skills training
- Promote participation in household and community activities
What levels of support does SIL provide?
Everyone with mental illness and disabilities is unique and has therefore has different support requirements. The NDIS has outlined three levels of support that SIL is funded under:
- Lower needs – not usually 24/7. Includes supervision of living arrangements.
- Standard needs – 24/7 support. Includes assistance and supervision of most daily tasks, and Support Worker overnight sleepovers.
- Higher needs – 24/7 active support, including overnight. Includes frequent with managing challenging behaviours that require positive behaviour support, assistance with daily tasks.
How do I find a SIL home?
If you or someone you care for has indicated that living independently is a personal goal to work towards, then this should be raised in your NDIS planning meetings.
Once you have an approved plan with SIL in your package, you or your Support Coordinator can contact support service providers to find out where there are SIL vacancies.
Bear in mind that preparing to live independently after living at home for a long time can be a long process, and it may be something that you work towards gradually.
What are the benefits of SIL?
The NDIS is all about having more choice and control in your life. If living independently is one of your goals then SIL has clear benefits for you.
Sharing a home can mean that you are sharing the cost of rent, and therefore have more funds to put towards other things you want.
It’s also possible that you can share supports, so for example in a home shared by three people, a Support Worker staying overnight would have this cost split between three people rather than paying for this solely out of your own package.
Find out more about accessing the Supporting Independent Living service that Open Minds provides here.