Sharing lives to support adults with learning disabilities

21 December 2017

Derbyshire families are being encouraged to open their homes to give adults with learning disabilities the chance to live ordinary lives in the community.

As part of our Shared Lives scheme, over 18s move in with a carer to share their family life for a long term arrangement, short break or day care.

Now we're asking people to consider offering a home to adults with learning disabilities, older people, people with mental health support needs or younger, vulnerable people leaving children's support services.

The scheme aims to:

  • provide support and accommodation to enable people to move from their current living situation to help them develop their strengths and potential
  • offer an alternative to institutional day care, residential or nursing care
  • provide family carers with a regular break from caring
  • help people to maintain and develop their independence and life skills.

Across Derbyshire, there are around 72 Shared Lives arrangements offering a safe, supportive home to an adult with support needs.

Councillor Jean Wharmby, our cabinet member for adult care, said:

"Our Shared Lives carers do an amazing job.

"They give adults with learning disabilities a life − not a service − which allows them to thrive and do all the things we take for granted in a safe environment with support when they need it.

"I'd urge people to consider becoming a carer and changing someone's life."

Shared Lives is registered with the Care Quality Commission and carers are assessed and approved.

Carers come from all backgrounds, can be working, unemployed or retired. They need to be patient with a stable home life, flexible and willing to learn.

Training is provided and support is on hand. Carers are paid depending on the type of support they offer.

To find out more contact the Shared Lives project manager tel: 01629 533769.