$33 million grant to boost the disability and aged care sector workforce now open

Joint Media Release with:

The Hon. Christian Porter MP
Minister for Social Services

Selected organisations specialising in business sector growth and transition have been invited to submit applications for leading a new $33 million Australian Government investment in the disability and aged care sector workforce.

Minister for Social Services, Christian Porter, and Assistant Minister for Social Services and Disability Services, Jane Prentice, said 10 organisations renowned for their business expertise were shortlisted as applicants for the Boosting Local Care Workforce Opportunity, designed to create more jobs in regions that require strong jobs growth ahead of the full the NDIS roll out in 2020.

“This three-year package was first announced in the 2017–18 Federal Budget,” Minister Porter said.

“It is designed to increase capacity in rural, regional and outer-metropolitan areas so NDIS participants and older Australians seeking aged care services have access to high quality services and support.”

The disability workforce is expected to more than double as the NDIS is introduced, from about 73,000 full-time equivalent workers in 2013 before the NDIS trials began, to about 162,000 full-time equivalent workers when the scheme is fully implemented in 2019-20. The aged care workforce is also growing, but over a broader time period, from 366,000 in 2016 to 980,000 workers by 2050.

The lead organisation selected through the grant process will be responsible for delivering, managing and reporting to the Australian Government on the three initiatives that make up the package:

  • $9.1 million for the Care Workforce Regional Coordinator Initiative, including engaging up to 25 skilled  Care Workforce Regional Coordinators across Australia supporting NDIS and aged care providers in regional, rural and outer metropolitan and non-metropolitan areas, and raising awareness of new employment opportunities.
  • $4.1 million for the nationally focused Specialist Coordinators Initiative, taking a national approach to disability sector market issues by establishing up to 10 Specialist Coordinators to address key focus areas
  • $19.8 million for the Sector Transition and Employer Support Initiative assisting eligible NDIS service providers with professional advice expertise and small grants to help them to prepare their businesses to become NDIS ready.

“Shortlisted organisations have extensive experience delivering business support to a variety of sectors across Australia, and exceptional networks and influence within the specialised service sector,” Minister Prentice said.

“The successful applicant will have the ability to influence and engage with service providers nationally as well as in specified regions, as well as the proven ability to deliver national targeted programs or projects for government.”

Applications are due by Tuesday 26 September 2017 and will be followed by a rigorous assessment process. It is expected that the successful applicant will be finalised by December 2017 and the package ready to roll out shortly thereafter.

“The package builds on the Government’s considerable investment in to assist NDIS participants, sector and workforce to transition to the scheme, with more than $110 million committed already through the Sector Development Fund,” Minister Prentice said.