Helping Children with Autism Program (HCWA)

We are a registered provider for the Helping children with Autism Program (HCWA) through the Department of Social Services. This government initiative recognises the need for early childhood intervention, and aims to provide children with supports and funding of up to $12,000 (up to a maximum of $6,000 per financial year) until their seventh birthday.

 

Our HWCA Program offers a range of services including:

  • Individual and group sessions with an Occupational Therapist or Speech Pathologist.
  • Individual assessment and reports.
  • Parent training programs.
  • Recommendations regarding individual learning needs.
  • Support to purchase resources for your child through DSS funding.

Better Start Program

The Better Start Program for Children with Disability initiative provides funding for early intervention services. Children are eligible for the Better Start program if diagnosed with one of the following disabilities:

  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Deafblindness
  • Down syndrome, including mosaic Down syndrome
  • Fragile X syndrome with full mutation
  • Hearing impairment
  • Sight impairment
  • Prader-Willi syndrome
  • Williams syndrome
  • Angelman syndrome
  • Kabuki syndrome
  • Smith-Magenis syndrome
  • CHARGE syndrome
  • Cornelia de Lange syndrome
  • Rett’s Disorder
  • Cri du Chat syndrome; or
  • Microcephaly

Each disability included in the Better Start program is subject to an eligibility threshold. These thresholds have been determined by the Department of Social Services. Children with an eligible diagnosis must register for Better Start before they turn 6 years old. A child will have until they turn 7 to access funding. Children registered with Better Start can access up to $12,000 (maximum $6,000 per year) to pay for early intervention services.

 

Our Better Start Program offers a range of services including:

  • Individual and group sessions with an Occupational Therapist, Speech Pathologist or Physiotherapist.
  • Individual assessment and reports.
  • Parent training programs.
  • Recommendations regarding individual learning needs.
  • Support to purchase resources for your child through DSS funding.

Accessing HCWA or Better Start Programs

  • After receiving a formal diagnosis contact can be made with the Autism Advisor on 1300 978 611 or click here to download application forms.
  • Early Connections – Coffs Coast can support you to submit your application to HCWA.
  • The application process normally takes approximately 8 weeks.
  • Once you have received your HCWA Letter of Introduction, please call our office to arrange an appointment for an Initial Consultation on (02) 6652 8080.
  • This Initial Consultation will include developing an Individual Plan with one of our Key Workers, which is an essential requirement of this Program.
  • You can also phone our office for an Information Pack about our Programs, our supports and services and our fee structure.
  • As the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) is rolled out across Australia, children supported through HCWA or Better Start will transition to the NDIS.
  • Follow this link to DSS website for further information.