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A different sort of togetherness celebrated this Shared Lives Week

This Shared Lives Week, Hampshire County Council is saying a big thank you to all the county’s Shared Lives’ carers who look after vulnerable adults in their own homes across the county.

Councillor Liz Fairhurst, Hampshire County Council’s Executive Member for Adult Social Care and Health said: “The Shared Lives scheme is a fantastic initiative that links people who need help and support with those who want to offer a caring family environment to a vulnerable person. Those benefitting from the service include people who have a learning or physical disability, experience a mental health condition, or who are elderly and frail and unable to live independently on their own.”

“While we try to get our Shared Lives households together at this time every year to celebrate, we’ve had to be a little more creative this year, and plan our celebrations virtually!”

For those who want to take part, a five-day virtual tour of some of Hampshire’s favourite attractions is planned including Staunton and Manor Farm Country Parks, Sir Harold Hillier Gardens and Arboretum, the Watercress Line and Milestones Museum, followed by a virtual tea party on Thursday and an online singalong. 

Across Hampshire, there are currently around 110 Shared Lives carers who share their homes and lives with more than 230 individuals, providing either a permanent place to live, short-term care or day care.

Carers are carefully matched with those they look after, and feedback from both sides shows this can be a highly effective way to be supported within a loving and stable home, which in turn helps people to connect to their local communities, improving their wellbeing and independence.

Carers are given training and regular support and are paid an allowance to cover bed, board and care. Many carers report building close, lasting friendships with those who share their lives.

Although the scheme is not actively recruiting during the pandemic, it is still possible to express interest in becoming a Shared Lives carer. To find out more, call 01329 316861 or e-mail shared.lives@hants.gov.uk. You can also visit the County Council’s website at: hants.gov.uk/sharedlives.

If you or someone you know is eligible for social care and is interested in having a Shared Lives stay, please contact the County Council’s Adults’ Health and Care department on 0300 555 1386. 

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