Update of Individualised Funding and Purchasing Guidelines  

On 18 March 2024 the purchasing rules governing what disability funding can be used for changed. Find more information on our Purchasing Rules and EMS update news item external URL .

Whaikaha was set up to work with disabled people, tāngata whaikaha Māori and their family/whānau to transform the disability support system in line with the Enabling Good Lives approach. We are committed to this mahi.

We have recently been made aware of some concerns within the disability community about the future of Individualised Funding (IF).

IF is a person directed funding scheme set up to provide disabled people and their family/whanau with more choice and control over their disability supports.

Many of the principles that underpin IF directly overlap with the Enabling Good Lives (EGL) approach. This includes:

  • ensuring disabled people have control over their disability supports and lives
  • providing support options that are flexible, responsive and needs-based, that focus on the disabled person (and their family and whānau where relevant), and enable disabled people to make real decisions about their own lives.

IF allows people to purchase targeted disability support. It is separate to any financial support they may receive from government through a benefit or disability allowance. A key difference to other types of funding, such as a benefit, is that IF is not asset tested or connected to a person’s income.

People allocated IF do not pay tax on that allocation, because it is not considered income – it is public funding for disability support services, rather than personal financial assistance. There are no plans for another government agency to administer IF.

We want disabled people and tāngata whaikaha Māori to get the most out of this disability support funding. We want people to have a good experience when they engage with the system, whether that's with the NASCs, the hosts, the EGL sites, or with any disability provider.

IF Host Providers play an important role supporting disabled people and their family/whānau to make decisions about how they use their allocated disability support funding.  IF Host Providers assist Whaikaha to ensure that this targeted funding is used for its intended purpose. In addition to fulfilling the function and administering payments, IF Host Providers also provide coaching and set up support for commencing IF for the first time. They provide ongoing advice, support, and guidance to IF recipients.

We encourage anyone who has any concerns to contact Whaikaha through our complaints process for disability support services.

More information on the purchasing guidelines

Whaikaha is committed to working with disabled people and host providers to ensure the Purchasing Guidelines are easy to understand and use.

Whaikaha recently updated the purchasing guidelines on our website.

We also hosted an online hui which was open to the public on Monday 24 April 2023. This hui was also an opportunity to update you on the steps we are taking towards system transformation.

Whaikaha would like to thank everyone who attended the Purchasing Guidelines hui. There was a great turnout and lots of questions. We are working to respond to these  as soon as possible. But, if you have any urgent questions, please email contact@whaikaha.govt.nz.

A transcript and video of this event is available on our website for those who may have missed it: Watch the Purchasing Guidelines community hui external URL