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What to expect when working with a psychosocial recovery coach

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Psychosocial recovery coaches are a recent addition to the NDIS. They are specialised mental health support professionals available to some NDIS participants dealing with mental health conditions as part of their plans.

The main job of a recovery coach is to help people with disabilities caused by mental health issues live a fulfilling and active life.

But what does a recovery coach actually do, and what can you anticipate when working with one? Today, we’ll delve into how this new support service functions.

About Psychosocial Recovery Coaches

Recovery coaches are individuals with mental health expertise. They should either have personal experience dealing with mental illness or possess substantial knowledge about psychosocial disability and mental health.

These coaches bring their specialised skills and know-how to assist people with psychosocial disabilities in gaining control over their lives and navigating both the NDIS and the mental health system.

A psychosocial disability refers to a disability that can stem from a mental health condition. For more information, you can read our article on Psychosocial Disability and the NDIS.

What can a psychosocial recovery coach help with?

A recovery plan is put in place to assist you in becoming more self-reliant. It helps you make the most of your NDIS Plan, coordinates NDIS supports, offers coaching to enhance your skills like motivation, resilience, and decision-making, and links you with mainstream supports.

Providers of psychosocial recovery services state that if you have a psychosocial support, you might qualify for a psychosocial recovery coach. Local area support coordinators Adelaide or NDIA planners can suggest suitable providers, but the final choice rests with you.

Their role is to collaborate with your informal and formal supports and other key stakeholders to connect you with all the necessary assistance for a smooth recovery journey.

They work with you to create a clear plan of action to achieve your goals and provide expertise, encouragement, and support to help you make positive changes in your life.

What will a psychosocial recovery coach do?

Recovery Plus Support has outlined a 10-step process to give you an idea of what to expect when working with a psychosocial recovery coach:

  • The coach provider receives a referral.
  • You have an initial meeting with your coach to get to know each other and share information.
  • The coach assesses your situation to determine beneficial supports.
  • An action plan is developed to help you reach your goals, including a relapse prevention plan if needed.
  • You’re connected with relevant supports or support workers that you both agree on.
  • A 3-month review is conducted to track your progress.
  • Regular check-ins are done to ensure your supports are effective.
  • A 9-month review is held to monitor your progress.
  • Assistance is provided to prepare for your NDIS Plan Review, including outlining achievements and any new support requirements.
  • Your NDIS Plan Review takes place.

When choosing a psychosocial recovery coach, look for the following qualities:

  • Someone you feel comfortable discussing your mental health with.
  • Experience in the mental health field (you can ask for background information or check the organisation’s website for profiles).
  • Good networks and connections to other services and supports.
  • The ability to interact with you in a way that suits you, whether it’s face-to-face meetings or meetings at a location you’re comfortable with.

For example, one success story involved working with an NDIS participant with a psychosocial support disability who initially resisted support and was disengaged. The recovery coach visited once a week, gradually fostering independence. After several weeks, the participant was able to share their passions and work on self-identified goals with their coach’s support.

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