Shared Lives offers stability and security for people to live their best life. But what does it involve, and who does it help? This page gives a clear introduction to Shared Lives services in Wales. We also have advice for anyone looking to become a Shared Life carer.
What is Shared Lives?
Shared Lives is for people aged 18+ who want to live independently, with the added support of a family and community network. It is an alternative to supported living or residential care and support takes place in a supportive family home.
Shared Lives carers work in their own homes and communities, choosing when and how much they work. The support carers provide could be a day a week, a few days at a time or long-term, live-in care and support (or anything in between). They are carefully matched with a person who is seeking the opportunity of Shared Living. Shared interests, lifestyles and sense of humour are just some of things that are considered to ensure the right match.
Shared Lives carers share family life with a person who needs support to live well and get to see first-hand the amazing difference a Shared Life can have. Gaining independence, learning new skills and experiencing a sense of belonging as an active member of their community really helps people grow in confidence and wellbeing.
Find out more about the difference Shared Lives makes in people's lives
Who is supported by Shared Lives?
Shared Lives provide support to people with Learning Disabilities, physical disabilities, living with dementia, mental ill-health, people needing to leave hospital, young people in transition from foster care, older people, as well as parent and baby placements for new parents with learning disabilities.
Who can become a Shared Lives carer?
Shared Lives carers come from all walks of life and backgrounds and don’t need to have caring experience. All that is needed is time, commitment and the desire to help someone get the most out of life. Shared Lives carers get to see the amazing difference a Shared Life can have, watch a person grow in confidence, gain more independence, learn new skills and experience a sense of belonging for the first time in their life.
How do I become a Shared Life carer?
When applying to become a Shared Life Carer you will go through an approval process. Once approved Shared Lives carers are trained and can become members of Shared Lives Plus which provides support and guidance in addition to the support of their local scheme.
A Shared Lives carer is carefully matched with the person who is seeking the opportunity of Shared Living. Shared interests, lifestyles and sense of humour are just some of things that are considered to ensure the right match.
“I was working 12 hours a day and missing out on family life… I’m now a Shared Lives carer – I can support someone to live their best life while playing an active role in bringing up my son”. Shared Lives carer
"I wouldn't call it work at all"- Become a Shared Lives Carer
Watch this video for more information on becoming a Shared Lives carer.
Finding a Shared Lives opportunity near you
For more information and to read about the impact Shared Lives carers are having all over Wales, please visit the Shared Lives website or telephone 0151 227 3499.
Job vacancies in care
Wales needs more social care workers.
Many people working in social care have made the jump from jobs such as hospitality or retail. Use your transferable skills and apply for roles in your area now.