Taking a break from your caregiver is beneficial to both of you. The opportunity to meet new people and experience new things is an important part of the benefits of volunteering.

Everyone needs a break sometimes! Short-Term Accommodation (STA) can provide respite care that allows both you and your carer to have a break or a change of scenery.Short-term accommodation and assistance is now called Residential Respite under the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). The amount of support you receive from STA depends on the level of assistance you require.

Navigating the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) Short Term Respite (STA) options can be confusing, so we've put together a guide to help you understand what it means and how to access it.

Short-term accommodation is a form of housing that provides temporary shelter for people who are homeless or at risk of becoming homeless. It may be a room in a shelter, a rental property, or a friend's home. STA refers to a variety of caregiving support options that allow you and your loved one to have a break or change of scenery. This includes respite care. STA can help you live away from home in a supportive environment for a short period of time. An STA can look like:

Short-term care that is individualized to meet your specific needs. You are paired up with a support worker who will help you stay as comfortable as possible.

This money can be used to do things in your home or in the community, like going to camps.

Your needs are met by group short-term options that match the interests of other people who may have similar needs and concerns.

You can enjoy respite care either overnight or over a weekend, at a facility that is tailored to your needs.

Some organisations provide STA services as an additional support option, instead of providing them in a group-based facility. Sometimes, the provider will book an apartment at a hotel. The STA is not only about housing, but also includes the support you receive while you are there.

There are many benefits to using STA, including improved communication, better teamwork, and greater productivity. A short stay away from home can help you:

Make new friends and meet new people

Try new activities

Enjoy changing scenery

Step outside your comfort zone

De-stress and recharge

Increased independence

Many STA providers offer group activities as part of your stay, such as art therapy sessions, group fitness activities, or day trips. Staying in STA can provide a break from the daily routine, while also providing informal support to your carer. This can be beneficial to both of you, keeping your relationships positive. STA can also be a great way for older caregivers to get a break and recharge their batteries. They are more likely to have health issues of their own, so STA can help them recuperate.

How STA funding works under the NDIS
The National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) funds 'short-term accommodation and assistance' under the core support category 'Assistance for Daily Living' (Category 1).STA funding includes all basic expenses for a 24-hour period related to services, including:

Accommodation in suitable facilities

Personal care and support (including overnights)


Activities that you and the provider agree to

The NDIS usually provides up to 28 days of Supported Living Assistance (STA) per year. There is some leeway in how you use your allotted STA days. For example, you might want to use it for two blocks of 14 days, or for one weekend a month. The amount of funding you can receive depends on the level of support you need.

For example, if you have very high support needs and your spouse is your primary caregiver, you can get the full 28 days of STA funding from your NDIS plan. Or if you have mid-level support needs and want to build your independence before moving home, the NDIS may provide enough STA funding for one night away from your parents each month. You need individual support because of your disability. Unless you require individual support because of a disability, you may share supports with other people.

To get STA funding in your NDIS plan, you need to find ways to support the activities that relate to your goals. These goals could be 'prepare for independent living', 'learn new life skills' or 'make new friends'. You will need to provide any evidence to make it easier for the NDIS to understand why your STA is reasonable and necessary.

This may include formal documentation from an occupational therapist or other professional, as well as letter support from those providing informal services, explaining why they (and you) would benefit from the break. If you need longer term housing or home support, other options, such as supported independent living, are more likely to be included in your plan.