Behaviour Support in New England NSW

Our service extends from Armidale to Inverell. Many of our clients hail from Inverell and we enjoy visiting the beautiful community as often as possible. Travel costs are reduced when we can book in two to four clients in one day visit, and then each participant shares the travel which is three hours return from Armidale.

Behaviour support, therapeutic assessment, and counselling therapies help people under NDIS funded supports in a number of ways. Assessment and reports assist to clarify individual capacities, skills, and domains where supports are needed. These also speak to funding reviews and often contribute to adjustments to funded supports.

Increasingly over time we have found that assessments include measures like the Adaptive Behaviour Assessment System Version 3 (ABAS-3). Given the updates to the new and revised Vineland-3 we are also able to “Support the diagnosis of intellectual and developmental disabilities,” making the assessment more comprehensive. We are also preparing to engage with the Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule, Second Edition, (ADOS-2) as we have many requests from people regionally without access to assessment and diagnostic assistance. Combined with more accessible intelligence measures for people with disabilities in particular, we can speak to IQ as well as to capacity and functional skills.

These measures assist developing a more personal plan for behaviour support that is closely tailored to an individual’s cognitive, social, and daily living capacities and skills. Getting this basic information right is the key to creating a sustainable support plan. To work with someone, whether a child to a senior, family and staff or carers need to understand the person’s strengths and weaknesses.

Knowing the person’s capacities in this way relieves enormous stress for support providers, both family and staff alike. Otherwise family or staff are guessing, working in the dark, and making assumptions that are often out of step with the reality.

In the realms of behavioural concerns people tend to either blame a person based on expectations that are higher than perhaps realistic – or they reduce expectations too much and allow a person with special needs to not achieve to their innate capacity.

This is more or less true of everyone. Relationships are places where we need both support and challenge, praise and a hand-up, consistent non-judgemental support and unconditional positive regard – and perhaps a dash of humor to make life more fun.

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