Megan Mathisen is one of Headway Gippsland’s amazing Support Coordinators.
Megan loves helping people with disabilities to achieve their goals, and getting the most from their NDIS plans, but she hasn’t always been part of this industry. In fact, Megan has done pretty much everything: banking, business analysis, IT related fields, and has even travelled the world. But today, living in Gippsland and helping her local community, fills her cup.
Megan started at Headway as a Support Coordination Assistant, but the team immediately saw her natural empathy for people shine through.
“Having a personal, or lived experience has really helped. It’s all about building relationships with people, and I love talking to and meeting new people.”
What exactly is Support Coordination?
“The summary of what I do is connecting people with the services they need. But, it’s much more than that.”
She adds that the role is really important in looking at people’s NDIS plan and making sure it’s exactly what they need.
“Sometimes a person’s plan might not be the best fit for them,” says Megan, “so we like to do a plan review within 6 months.” The goal of Support Coordinators is to ensure the plan is adequately funded for the person’s needs. “We know the system, and see people face to face, and we can have these conversations.”
“We care so much for our people – we just want everything for them,” she says.
Why might Support Coordination be misunderstood?
Megan explains that despite being such a valuable service, most people don’t receive support coordination. In 2021 only 43% of participants had support coordination included in their plan.
“People think that if money goes into support coordination, it comes from something else. Which just isn’t true. Support coordination is its own bucket of funding – and if you don’t use it, you lose it.” However, it’s important to request it in your plan. “If you say ‘I don’t need support coordination’,” says Megan, “then there is no support coordination funding for you.”
“It doesn’t come out of any other funding – so ask for it, and use it,” she recommends.
Our Support Coordinators will get you the best value, and make your plan go as far as possible. They also give you support to navigate the NDIS.
“It can be a very isolating thing, so having someone you can speak the language with is vital. The most common thing I hear is ‘you make it so much easier for me to understand my plan’.” We interpret the wording, we fight for you, and we get you the best services with the best people.