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What We Do

Shared Lives

Shared Lives is a quality alternative to residential care settings where people live as part of a family.

image shows a person supported by the Shared Lives team

Shared Lives Carers support people within their own homes, either in a long-term arrangement, day support or on a respite basis, which may be a day, weekend, or a few weeks at a time.

People benefit from consistent support from people who know them well and build positive relationships and friendships. Shared Lives predominantly supports people with learning disabilities but we are now expanding our support to people with mental health support needs, dementia and young people moving to adult services. People are ‘matched’ with carers by finding out their interests, skills and what makes them tick. Family and community lie at the heart of everything we do. Shared Lives removes the traditional barriers of support and sees people flourish with a family.

The Certitude Shared Lives support team provides continuous support, guidance and training to carers, enabling them to deliver the very best support.

How can I become a Shared Lives Carer?

If you are interested in becoming a Shared Lives Carer, we recommend you read our Shared Lives Carers FAQs before you contact us, as this will help give you a better understanding of the role.

How can I get supported by a Shared Lives carer?

A Shared Lives referral will need to be made by your local authority. You will need to discuss this with them to ask if this is an option they would consider. We can only provide shared lives support to people funded by the boroughs we cover which are:

  • Richmond
  • Wandsworth
  • Hounslow
  • Lambeth

If you are funded by any other borough, you will need to check directly with them about their own Shared Lives scheme.

How involved will I be when it comes to my support and meeting a Shared Lives carer?

Our Shared Lives team will work in partnership with you, your family and any other person who you feel needs to be involved during this process.

  • We will set an initial meeting to discuss your preferences, interests and the support you would like to receive.
  • We will then look for suitable Shared Lives carers that meet your needs.
  • We will set up a matching meeting. This will usually take place at the carer’s home to give you the chance to see where you might live and the local area.
  • If this goes well, we would suggest another meeting, for you to get to know one another a bit more. The matching process can be only one or two meetings but it can also be taken slowly where a few visits are arranged as you might also be meeting other carers. We will check everyone is happy with the arrangement before you make a choice.

If I live with a Shared Lives carer, will I still be able to see my family?

Of course, you will be supported by your Shared Lives carer to keep in contact with your family and your family will be welcomed to visit you at your new home. It is worth bearing in mind that this is the carer’s home too and other people may live there so arranging these visits will need to be discussed together.

Case Studies from our Shared Lives carers

image shows a quote from Veronica's Story and a picture of the person she supports

Veronica's Story

Veronica talks about her experience as a shared lives carer, supporting the same person for 30 years.

Case study social asset Joe 01

Joe's Story

Joe talks about being a Shared Lives carer offering respite breaks for people in his home.