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A person and a support worker laughing.

Every Moment Has Potential

Diagram showing the 4 Essentials of Active Support.
The 4 Essential elements of Active Support help you to put to Active Support into practice
  • Every moment has potential – every task, activity or interaction has opportunities to involve a person

  • Graded assistance to ensure success – provide the right type of support to assist a person to succeed in an activity or social interaction

  • Maximising choice and control – offer choices to increase a person’s control over their life 

  • Little and often – support a person to try new things or participate for a short time to increase their experience 

The 1st Essential is Every Moment Has Potential

Diagram showing the 4 Essentials of Active Support, highlighting Every moment has potential.

Using Every Moment Has Potential means staff:

  • recognise the many moments available to engage a person throughout the day

  • break activities down into parts to create more opportunities to engage a person 

  • think in steps

This video explains Every Moment Has Potential.

Some of the footage in this video was edited to show disengagement. Some support intentionally demonstrates doing to or for people supported.

Using Every Moment Has Potential

When you are doing something think: 

  • How can I involve someone in this activity?

  • How can I break this activity into steps? 

Notice when a person is disengaged and think:

  • What are the opportunities for them to be engaged right now in this moment?

For example, there are many opportunities to be involved in cooking dinner. Some steps are:

A support worker assisting a person to cut carrots using a knife.
  1. Getting vegetables from the fridge 

  2. Getting ingredients from the cupboard

  3. Washing and chopping vegetables

  4. Getting saucepans and frypan

  5. Filling saucepans with water

  6. Lighting the burner on the stove 

  7. Getting utensils

  8. Putting ingredients in the saucepans and frypan

  9. Stirring ingredients

  10. Pouring in sauce

A person may be able to do some, or all the steps, with the right support.

Watch the video of staff putting Every Moment Has Potential into practice.



  1. What activities and steps did you see?

  2. What opportunities did staff make for people to be engaged?

Every Moment Has Potential - at Home and in the Community

Active Support is not just about assisting people to do chores. 

There are many moments of potential for social interactions at home:

  • asking a person about their day 

  • sharing a story with them 

  • initiating a conversation with the people who live together

  • supporting a person to phone a family member or write an email to a friend 

  • introducing a person to a visitor 

  • encouraging a person to wave to a neighbour

There are also opportunities to be engaged in leisure activities and hobbies, such as:

  • knitting

  • sewing 

  • gardening 

  • reading 

  • listening to music 

  • playing a game 

  • exercising 

  • baking 

  • model building 

  • boccia 

There are many opportunities in the community:

  • selecting and paying for items at a store

  • choosing a book from a library and checking it out

  • returning a shopping trolley at the supermarket

  • noticing and talking about interesting things as you come across them (e.g., plants, dogs, birds, cars etc.)



Think about a service you work in or know:

  1. What everyday activities and interactions do the people engage in?

  2. What other opportunities might be available to them?

Every Moment Has Potential is the 1st of the 4 Essentials of Active Support. It means looking for opportunities for people to be engaged in activities or social interactions. It also means breaking activities into steps. There are many opportunities at home and in the community – you just need to notice or create them. 


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