The Australian Government will provide funding of $139.9 million to extend 389 projects aimed at building the individual capacity and increasing the social, economic and community participation of people with disability.
Minister for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and Government Services, the Hon. Bill Shorten MP said the funding will help people with disability stay connected with the communities they live in.
“This funding extension is a lifeline for 389 existing projects, which are all supporting people with disability, families and carers in their communities,” Minister Shorten said.
“There are 4.4 million Australians with disability that deserve the equal opportunity to build their knowledge and feel connected to the communities they live in. It is vital that we support the projects and organisations that help them do this.
“This includes projects that improve access to community and mainstream services, projects to build skills for people with disability so they can make friends and social connections, get a job or improve their independence and confidence.”
Minister for Social Services Amanda Rishworth said the Albanese Labor Government was committed to leaving no one behind and holding no one back – and, importantly, that included people living with disability.
“This funding extension will help all Australians living with disability, regardless of if they are eligible for the NDIS or not,” Minister Rishworth said.
“All Australians living with disability should benefit from equal opportunity in the community and continue to be engaged and supported. We’re proud to assist with that.
“Importantly we’ve committed to boosting employment for people living with disability where they choose to do so and some of the projects to receive funding extensions will assist with this goal. Hiring a person living with disability makes good business sense and is good for the nation.”
The majority of projects were due to cease between now and February 2023, but will now receive funding until 30 June 2024 – ensuring that activities remain uninterrupted over the coming years.
Minister Shorten said the funding extension for projects funded under the Information Linkages and Capacity Building program aligns with the Government’s commitment under Australia’s Disability Strategy 2021-2031.
“We recognise the need to work closely with business, communities and non-government organisations to achieve the vision of the Strategy in a coordinated and targeted way,” Minister Shorten said.
“Through this program, we are funding projects that aim to build the knowledge, skills and confidence of people with disability, and improve their access to community and mainstream services.”
As of August 2022 there are 497 ILC funded projects operating around the country that focus on creating connections between people with disability and the communities they live in.