Shared lives placement

Shared Lives service is where households share their lives, families, home, interests, experience, and skills with people who need some help and support to live their lives to the full.

What is a Shared lives placement?

In a Shared lives placement, you live with a family, and they share their home, lives, families, interests, experience, and skills with you.

Support takes place in the home of a family in Leicestershire, who are approved to offer Shared lives support. It can be delivered in several different ways: 

  • Living in a carer's home: the person needing support may live in the carer's own home and be supported in their everyday life. Sharing a carer's home can be to cover a short-term need (such as providing a break for a person's main carer) or a longer-term situation.
  • Day-time support: regular support sessions held in the carer's home providing support and meaningful activities for LCC Shared Lives. This could also include days out or activities in the community.

If you are staying overnight:

  • You will have your own room and can bring your own things.
  • You will still be able to do the things you normally do.
  • You will be able to see your friends and family if you wish to.

The Shared lives carer:

  • Will support you to live the life you want, to keep in touch with your family and friends, and to enjoy day-to-day activities.
  • Can also support you with daily living tasks such as personal care, emotional support, and help you develop independent living skills.

Your support is tailored to you.

Who is it for?

Shared lives might be suitable for you if you’re an adult aged 18 or over, with eligible care and support needs, and have:

  • a physical disability or
  • a learning disability or
  • autism
  • mental health problems
  • dementia
  • age-related disabilities

How long are placements for?

Shared lives placements can provide you with:

  • Long-term care: You will be living with the Shared lives carer in their family home for as long as it is appropriate for you and for the Shared lives family.
  • Short-term care: You will be staying with the Shared lives carer and their family for periods varying from one night to 4 weeks.
  • Day activities: 3 or 6 hour sessions within the Shared lives carer's home and/or out in the community.

Shared lives service that is regulated and inspected by the Care Quality Commission

All our Shared lives carers are DBS checked, trained, and approved in accordance with the Care Quality Commission guidelines, and regularly monitored by the Shared lives service.

The Shared lives service is regulated and inspected by the Care Quality Commission, the social care regulator. The last inspection took place on 31 January 2019. The overall summary and rating of the service was 'Good'.

You can view a copy of the Shared lives inspection report on the CQC website.

How do I apply for a Shared lives placement?

You’ll need to ask us for a care and support assessment first to see if you have eligible care and support needs.  

A social care worker will visit you to do the assessment and will talk to you about all your options and agree if Shared lives is the best way to meet your care and support needs.

If you’re eligible, we will check to see if we have any Shared lives carers who are able to support your needs and arrange for you to meet them. We may not always be able to find a suitable match.

How much does it cost?

The cost of your placement will vary as it depends on the amount of support you need. We will tell you if you need to pay towards the cost of the service. This will be worked out by your assessed charge.

You will need a care and support assessment to see if you are eligible for support.

If you have already had an assessment, please contact your social worker to find out more about support.

Our Shared lives carers

Our Shared lives carers work closely with the Shared lives team to support all of the individuals receiving services. The Shared lives carers care for individuals and help them achieve independence and gain confidence.

Lesley Helps is a carer with the Shared lives service within Leicestershire County Council and was named as the Autism Carer of the Year in 2020, thanks to her dedication to helping those with the disability. Find out more about Lesley and the Autism Carer of the Year award.

Read about the personal experience of carers and the ones they care for during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Further reading

Become a Shared Lives Carer

Are you over 18 years old with some experience in a caring role?

Find out how you could change a life from your own home by becoming a Shared Lives Carer.

A woman with Down syndrome and her carer planting