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Supporting older people with learning disabilities and their families
Supporting older people with learning disabilities and their families

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Session 3: Shared Lives


Our research looked at the experiences of people living in Share Lives homes. Although Shared Lives has a long history (stretching back over 100 years) and exists in almost every UK area, it is not always well known to practitioners, family carers and people who use services.

Shared Lives is a service that matches adults with learning disabilities with carers and their families, to live within their home. It enables people with learning disabilities to live in a family, often for many years, sometimes until the end of life. Shared Lives carers receive support and advice from a Shared Lives coordinator; the support they provide is ongoing, and changes with the needs of the person. Most Shared Lives schemes involve a wider support package which includes a day service and respite care.

By the end of this session, you should be able to:

  • recognise the potential benefits of a Shared Lives arrangement as people with learning disabilities get older, particularly enabling people to ‘live well’
  • understand how to support people living in Shared Lives homes.