Family Fund uses a social model of disability.

Children and young people do not need a diagnosis to meet Family Fund criteria; but their additional support needs must arise from a disability or disabling condition. 

Children and young people with additional support needs arising from a disability or disabling condition or with a serious or life limiting illness meet this criteria where:

  • There is evidence that their additional needs impact on family’s choices and their opportunity to enjoy ordinary life; the degree of planning and support required to meet their needs are much greater than that usually required to meet the needs of children.


  • They require a high level of support in three or more of Family Fund’s seven areas of support descriptors below.


  • Their condition is long term or life limiting (by long term we mean lasting or likely to last 12 months or more).

Family Fund seven areas of support

Your child should require support in at least three of the seven areas below:

  • Personal care, supervision and vigilance – we mean things like feeding, washing, toileting; a very high level of supervision
  • Access to social activities – we mean things like engaging socially and taking part in activities
  • Education – we mean the type of support that is given for learning and who gives it?
  • Communication – we mean listening, speaking and understanding
  • Therapy and medical treatment – we mean what treatment or therapy is given, who does this, how often and when?
  • Specialist resources used - we mean things like wheelchair, oxygen, screen magnifier, electronic communication aid
  • The physical environment – we mean support with getting around and keeping safe.

You must also meet all of our general eligibility criteria.