What Is Supported Independent Living? Your Ultimate Guide

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You’ve heard the term “supported independent living” and wondered what it means. Is it some new health trend? A type of living situation? You’re not alone in your curiosity. 

Supported independent living is a relatively new concept gaining popularity as an alternative arrangement for specific groups. 

In this guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know to get up to speed on NDIS supported independent living Melbourne. Stick with us to get the full lowdown on this unique living option.

What Is Supported Independent Living?

Supported independent living means you live in your place but get help with specific daily tasks, such as cooking, cleaning, or bathing. 

Unlike assisted living facilities, which require residents to live in designated housing, supported independent living allows residents to reside wherever they choose—whether it’s an apartment, condo, or house.

Flexible In-Home Care

The level of support provided depends on your unique needs and abilities. You might need help a few hours a week or around the clock. Caregivers can assist with:

  • Housekeeping: Cleaning, laundry, meal prep
  • Personal care: Bathing, dressing, medication management
  • Transportation: Driving to appointments, running errands
  • Companionship: Engaging in social activities together

The goal is to help you maintain as much independence as possible while still providing necessary assistance. You remain in control of your living situation.

Peace of Mind for You and Your Loved Ones

Knowing you have reliable support and care allows you and your family to rest easy. Your loved ones can visit without worrying, and you can feel secure living alone while still being able to call on help whenever you need it.

Supported independent living provides a solution for those not quite ready for a care facility but needing extra support. It lets you hold onto your independence for as long as possible in a place you call home. While costs vary depending on location and level of care, services are often more affordable than residential facilities. 

If you or a loved one want to explore options for comfortably and safely aging in place, NDIS supported independent living Melbourne could be an ideal choice.

Who Is Eligible for Supported Independent Living?

Adults with Disabilities

Supported independent living programs are designed for adults with physical, intellectual, or developmental disabilities who want to live on their own but need some level of assistance. 

This could include conditions like cerebral palsy, autism, Down syndrome, or traumatic brain injuries. Supported living may be an option if you can handle some daily tasks independently but need help with others.

You could be be part Independent

you may already have the ability to handle some self-care. 

For example, you dress, feed yourself, and move around alone. However, you may need help cleaning, cooking meals, managing medications, or transportation. The key is finding the right balance of independence and support for your needs.

Application Process

To access supported living services, you must go through an application process. This typically involves an assessment to evaluate your level of need, income and insurance verification, background checks, and interviews. 

The goal is to match you with appropriate housing, caregivers, and the right amount of care and supervision. It can take time, so start exploring your options early.

Supported independent living can be life-changing for those who need a little help to live comfortably. 

If you or a loved one meet these basic qualifications, it may be worth looking into programs in your area. A new level of freedom and self-sufficiency could be within reach.

Supported Independent Living vs. Other Care Options

In-Home Care

In-home care assists with daily living activities like bathing, dressing, and meal preparation so you can continue living independently at home. 

Caregivers visit for a set number of hours per week to help out. While more flexible and personalised than facility-based care, in-home care may be more expensive since caregivers typically charge by the hour.

Assisted Living Facilities

Assisted living facilities provide housing, meals, and help with daily tasks like medication management or transportation. You have your apartment, but you share common areas. Staff is on-site 24/7 in case of emergencies. 

Assisted living is best for those who need more help than in-home care can provide, but not the intensive medical care of a nursing home—however, less independence and less privacy.

Nursing Homes

Nursing homes provide 24-hour skilled nursing care for those with complex medical needs. Registered nurses and doctors oversee a comprehensive care plan. This support may not fall under NDIS support.

All meals, housing, and assistance with daily living activities are provided—little independence or privacy. Often feels institutional.

Senior Apartments

Age-restricted apartments are for older adults who can still live independently. Typically, minimal assistance is provided. Once again these may not come under disability or NDIS supports.

If changes are needed, these options offer more freedom but less security than other options. Residents may face long waitlists and additional fees.

Supported independent living gives you more independence and flexibility than assisted living or nursing homes but more security and assistance than in-home care or senior apartments alone. 

With the right level of support, you can maintain autonomy in a community setting surrounded by peers. The ultimate goal of any care option should be maximising life satisfaction while meeting health needs—supported independent living aims to strike this balance.

How to Apply for Supported Independent Living?

Contact your local independent living centre to apply for NDIS supported independent living Melbourne services. These centres, may provide resources and assistance for people with disabilities to live more independently.

The application process typically involves an intake interview where you’ll provide information about your disability, living situation, income, and the types of help you need. 

Be prepared to discuss daily challenges and your goals for becoming more independent. The centre will evaluate your eligibility for services based on criteria like:

  • Having a physical, mental, or developmental disability that substantially limits your ability to live independently. 
  • Your financial situation. Most independent living services are provided at little or no cost. 
  • Your motivation and commitment to setting and achieving independent living goals.

Develop Your Independent Living Plan

If accepted into the program, you’ll work with NDIS Planner to develop an independent living plan tailored to your needs and goals

This plan acts as a roadmap by outlining specific areas you want to improve in, resources that can help you, and steps to work toward greater independence and self-sufficiency.

Some of the services and supports you might access through your plan include:

  • Assistive devices like wheelchairs, ramps, or grab bars to make your home more accessible. 
  • Training on daily living skills such as cooking, budgeting, using public transit, etc.
  • Peer support groups to connect with others in similar situations.
  • Advocacy assistance to help you secure your rights and access community resources.

You can gain more confidence and control over your life with time and practice. Regular follow-ups with your independent living counsellors will help keep you on track, reevaluate your goals, and change your plan. 

While the road to greater independence may not always be easy, the rewards of improved self-sufficiency and quality of life are worth the effort. Staying committed to your plan and utilising available resources and support will help ensure your success.


So there you have it, a quick guide to support independent living. We covered the basics of what it is, who benefits from it, and how to find programs and services in your area.

The great news is that SIL opens up possibilities for people with disabilities to live life on their terms. While setting it up takes some work, you’ll gain more freedom and control. Remember that you’re not alone in this journey.

With the proper preparation and support network, you’ll live independently and thrive before you know it. Connect with Polaris Care; we can help walk you through the process. We understand the significance of this journey, and we’re committed to providing the guidance and support you need every step of the way.

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