Individualised Funding

Individualised Funding (IF) is self directed funding from Whaikaha - Ministry of Disabled People where you can purchase your own disability supports. Find out more here.

What is Individualised Funding (IF)

IF is a type of person directed funding from Whaikaha which gives disabled people and their family/whānau more choice in how they are supported to live their lives. It is available throughout New Zealand for eligible people who have been assessed to receive either:

IF increases your choice and control about who provides this support, and how, and when you use it. Your options range from engaging support workers to directly work with you and the person in your care, or choosing purchases which support you living a good life. 

What you can use IF for

Working with a host, we want to make sure you feel confident to use your funding in the best way, so here are some guidelines to help. 

You can use IF to:

  • Get help with household management and the personal care of your disabled person by engaging a support worker (these can include family members, contracted people or organisations) and pay costs relating to engaging support workers
  • Take a break through engaging a support worker or other suitable alternatives so that the full-time carer can have time out and your disabled person can enjoy doing something away from you while you take a break. 

For information on how you can use your funding please view the Purchasing Rules which are available on our Purchasing Guidance page.

  • The Purchasing Rules have been updated (from 18 March 2024) so please check them carefully.

It's worth noting your funding cannot be used for illegal activities, gambling, alcohol or things that are not disability supports, such as health services provided by a hospital or income support.

IF also doesn’t cover costs related to medical supplies, equipment, home renovations, leisure, recreation, and personal or family costs.

Who can get IF

IF is something you need to have an assessment for, so contact the Needs Assessment Coordinator Service nearest you to talk about this funding.

You can get IF when you:

  • are eligible for Whaikaha funded services and support
  • have talked to a NASC to see whether IF is suitable for you
  • have been allocated a support that you are allowed to manage using IF.

What is an IF host

IF Hosts are organisations that Whaikaha contracts to support people using IF and should provide you with an easy way to understand how to use your IF and support you with all the paper work required, for example, to employ a support worker.

Your IF Host does a number of things to support you including:

  • helping you understand IF
  • helping you learn how to organise, set up and manage your supports
  • administering payments for the support services
  • helping you manage your responsibilities – this includes reporting back to them on the support hours you have used, so that they can be paid for
  • advising you if something that you want to purchase meets the Purchasing Guidance.

Your IF Host must also check that the service is working well and report back to Whaikaha about it.

Depending on your level of confidence to manage your IF, you may also want your IF Host to be responsible for recruiting, training and paying your support workers and possibly managing the legal aspects of your service. They will be able to do this for an extra fee that they set and you pay.

IF is all about flexibility and support that works for you so when you talk to your Host organisation, make sure you talk to them about how they can support you. You are under no obligation to use them for all their services.

What is an agent?

An agent is a person nominated by a disabled person to act on their behalf regarding their IF. For example, if you are the parent/guardian of a disabled person under the age of 18, you will be their agent.

There are responsibilities you have that the Host can't do for you, for example with IRD so please talk to your IF host about the responsibilities you hold as an agent under IF. Please note, as an agent you cannot pay yourself.

What is a recognition payment?

A Recognition Payment is a payment given for administration work that is done on a voluntarily basis on the disabled person’s behalf. Usually, but not always, by the full time carer.  The payment must be for reasonable expenditure incurred and be no more than $300 per year.

The requirement that the payment be made to cover "reasonable expenditure" is to ensure that it falls within the scope of the exemption in section CW 62B of the Income Tax Act 2007. Any questions about how or when to claim for this payment, please talk to your Host or connector.

IF Host Directory

Please find a list below of all the Hosts who have contracts with us at Whaikaha.

Access Community Health

Geneva Healthcare Limited

NZCL Limited

Manawanui Support Limited

Home Support North


The Lifewise Trust

Vision West

Florence Nightingale Agency

Care on Call

Where to go for help

If you have any questions about IF specific to your funding allocation please talk to your host or connector. They have all the information on your funding and are there to provide guidance and advice.

If you have questions about whether or not you are eligible, you need to contact your local Need Assessment Services Coordinator.