Choose the Right SIL Provider in 10 Simple Steps

April 25, 2024

Choosing a Supported Independent Living Provider  

Supported Independent Living, or SIL, empowers people with disabilities to lead full and rewarding lives. Offering support with daily tasks, the right SIL provider can create the conditions for independence.  

Picking a SIL provider is a big decision which shouldn’t be taken lightly, and whether it's for yourself or a loved one, navigating the selection process can seem a bit daunting.  

From support needs and costs to finding the right location, there’s a lot to factor in. Wouldn’t it be easier if picking a SIL provider was, well, a little bit easier? Your wish is our command!  

Here are 10 simple steps you can follow so you can choose the right SIL provider based on your personal needs and ambitions. 

✔️ Step 1: Understand Your Support Needs

Before diving headfirst into the research process, take a step back and consider your specific needs. There are a range of demands you’ll need to meet, which could include:

  • Daily Living Tasks: Does the participant require assistance with meal preparation, showering, dressing, or management of their medication?
  • Medical Requirements: Are there any specific medical conditions that need to be managed by the SIL provider?
  • Desired Level of Independence: What level of support is needed to balance independence with safety and wellbeing?
  • Social Preferences: Is the person outgoing and suited to a shared living environment, or do they prefer a quieter space and time alone?

✔️ Step 2: Consult Your NDIS Support Coordinator

A support coordinator is someone who works with you to get the most out of your NDIS (National Disability Insurance Scheme) plan. They can help you understand your plan, connect with service providers, and manage your funding based on your personal support aims.

A support coordinator can help you:

  • Understand Your Plan: They'll explain your NDIS plan, including your budget and what kind of supports you can use your funding for. They'll also clarify things like how much you can claim and when service bookings are required.
  • Managing Your Funding: They can help you track how you're using your plan and see if it aligns with your goals. Further down the track, they can also help you adjust your plan if needed.
  • Build Your Skills: Ideally, a support coordinator will help you develop the skills you need to manage your plan independently in the future.

✔️ Step 3: Research a Range of SIL Providers

Australia has a wide variety of SIL providers offering a range of services. Take a close look at their websites and try to find:

  • NDIS Registration: Make sure the provider is registered with the NDIS to ensure they can accept NDIS funding.
  • Range of Services: Do their services align with your specific needs? Look for details on support with daily living tasks, community access, behavioural support plans, and life skills development.
  • Staff Profiles: Check if the provider has staff with qualifications and experience in supporting individuals with similar disabilities.

✔️ Step 4: Consider the Location

Accessibility and proximity to support networks are important. Think about:

  • Public Transport Links: Are buses, trains, or light rail easy to catch for independent travel or social outings?
  • Local Amenities: Are there shops, cafes, and recreational facilities within walking distance or, failing that, a short public transport ride away?
  • Support Networks: Consider how close the accommodation is to family, friends, or other supports involved in your life.

✔️ Step 5: Evaluate Experience and Qualifications

If a SIL provider tells you their service is the bee’s knees, don't just take their word for it. Look for solid evidence of:

  • Years in Operation: A longer track record can indicate stability and experience.
  • Testimonials: See if the provider has testimonials from satisfied clients or families displayed on their website.
  • Staff Qualifications: Do staff have qualifications in disability support, positive behaviour support, or specific mental health disabilities?

✔️ Step 6: Check Quality Assurance and Regulations

Research the provider's compliance with:

  • NDIS Quality and Safeguards Commission Standards: These NDIS practice standards ensure a high level of service delivery and client safety.
  • Independent Audits: See if the provider has undergone recent independent audits and achieved positive results.

✔️ Step 7: Balance Funding and Pricing

Because you’ll need to balance your NDIS budget with a provider’s fees, understanding the financial details is crucial:

  • NDIS Funding Options: The NDIS provides various funding options for SIL support. The provider should be able to explain these options and the costs involved clearly.  
  • Fee Transparency: Get clear information on any additional fees associated with services not covered by NDIS funding. This could include things like personal care items or transport to specialist appointments.

✔️ Step 8: Meet the Team

Get in touch and schedule a meeting with the SIL provider to discuss your needs in detail. Here's what you should pay attention to:

  • Communication Style: Do they listen attentively and answer your questions clearly? How they interact with you in the meeting is a strong indication of the service they provide to participants.  
  • Person-Centred Approach: Do they focus on the individual's goals, preferences, and strengths? If they do, it’s a positive sign they promote empowerment.  
  • Philosophy of Support: What’s their overall approach to supporting people with disabilities? For the relationship to go smoothly, it’s vital that their ethos resonates with you.


✔️ Step 9: View the Accommodation

Tour the potential SIL accommodation to assess the suitability of living arrangements. Consider:

  • Accessibility Features: Are there ramps, grab bars, and wider doorways to accommodate mobility limitations?
  • Safety Measures: Are there smoke alarms, fire extinguishers, and security features in place?
  • Living Environment: Is the accommodation clean, well-maintained, and comfortable? Does it feel like a home with comfortable furnishings, and not just a facility?

✔️ Step 10: Talk to People Using the Service

If possible, speak with people already using the service or their families about their experiences with the provider. Their insights can be invaluable. Here are some questions to consider:

  • Are their needs being met effectively?
  • Do they feel safe and supported?
  • Are the staff friendly, professional, and respectful?
  • Do they have enough control over their day-to-day activities?

Remember – if you can’t speak to people directly, search online for third party feedback. Platforms like Trust Pilot and Google Reviews are a great place to start.    

A Final Tip…. Trust Your Gut!

When all is said and done, making the best choice will depend on having a good feeling. Don’t be afraid to use your intuition – only choose a SIL provider who inspires confidence and gives off the right vibe. If something doesn't feel right, it’s probably wise to carry on searching.

Finding the right provider is crucial for ensuring a safe and comfortable living environment that promotes the right mix of autonomy and support.  

By following these steps and taking your time with the selection process, you'll be well on your way to finding a SIL provider who offers exactly what you’re hunting for.

Custom Support & Community-Based Accommodation

Ready to experience supported living that empowers you to live life on your terms? United for Care offers a seamless solution – customised SIL services paired with modern, accessible living in our Vertical Villages.

Our team of dedicated support specialists will work closely with you to build a personalised SIL plan that caters to your unique needs and goals. Whether you’re after independent living with a safety net or require more comprehensive support, United for Care will be there every step of the way.

Imagine living in a vibrant community designed with accessibility in mind. United for Care Vertical Villages offer state-of-the-art features, nearby amenities, and a supportive atmosphere to make everyday life easier and more fulfilling.

When it comes to choosing your SIL provider, don't settle for anything less than the perfect fit.

Contact United for Care today and find out how our combined SIL services and Vertical Village living can give you the support and the freedom to live a life that’s all you.

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Call Us: 1300 405 260

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