MORE than 300 Illawarra families are set to benefit from $592,000 in state government funding to a Fairy Meadow-based disability organisation.
The grant has been awarded to The Disability Trust, and will go towards providing a minimum 168 hours of flexible respite support for families and carers looking after a person with a disability.
Minister for Disability Services and the Illawarra John Ajaka made the announcement yesterday, and said the grant had been sourced from a pool of funding called Stronger Together 2, made available in the state budget.
Disability Trust senior respite and care solutions manager Pam Stiff said because the respite support was flexible, it meant carers would have control over when and how they used it.
"This will make a huge difference - respite has become the cornerstone of disability care in NSW," she said.
Ms Stiff said the organisation would work with Ageing, Disability and Home Care, which provided disability services and support throughout NSW, to ensure respite care was allocated to those who needed it the most.
Disability Trust director Anne Reeve welcomed the funding, but said there was still a long way to go in respite care.
She said the shortfall was particularly felt among older people looking after an adult family member with a disability.
Mr Ajaka said carers made an enormous sacrifice for their loved ones.
"The NSW government is committed to supporting them by ensuring the appropriate supports are in place," he said.