Arlene and Andy. Photo: IWC


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An opportunity to discover the benefits of ‘Shared Lives’ and how to become involved is being offered at special drop-in sessions this month.

Shared Lives Week starts on Monday 17th June 2019 and the Shared Lives team has several venues where they will be out and about for people to come and have a chat about what the scheme offers.

Shared Lives was introduced to the Island last year and involves carers using their own family home to support disabled individuals, either long-term or for short stays, day support or respite. It provides high-quality, regulated care, helping people to build a complete life in their community, enabling access to more activities through a supportive living environment.

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If you are an Island resident, you can apply to be a Shared Lives carer providing you have a home that you own or rent with a spare room. Relevant care work experience is not essential; Shared Lives welcomes all applicants. If approved, you will receive training, fees and ongoing support.

Shared Lives carers are self-employed and do not work to a fixed schedule.

One drop-in session will be hosted by Arlen and Andy, who are Shared Lives carers and recently featured in the Isle of Wight Council’s new digital magazine, The Island.

Andy said:

“If you are looking for something that you can truly apply yourself to, something that will challenge you and something that will reward you, then look again at Shared Lives.

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“Forget the daily trudge to work, you can make real differences to people’s lives; you can watch how they grow into their new environment and see how they respond learning to do things which they hadn’t thought possible.”

Shared Lives manager, Yvonne Millmore, explains:

“Our carers are invaluable — they provide practical and emotional support in stable homes where they and the adult can share their lifestyles and interests.

“Help people become more independent and more connected with friends and family, and build a full life in their community.

“You don’t have to be a health worker or social care professional; it’s more about openness to sharing your life and helping someone develop and grow as a person.”

Councillor Clare Mosdell, Cabinet member for adult social care, housing needs and public health, said:

“The Isle of Wight Council is committed to ensuring disabled individuals are given every opportunity to live full and independent lives in ordinary homes.

“Shared lives also enable people to build a full life in their community and contribute to it.”

Shared Lives drop in sessions
Monday 17th June 9am to 5pm Main Co-op, Ryde
Monday 17th June 12 noon to 2pm Ventnor Winter Gardens (Shared Lives carers Arlen and Andy will be there)
Tuesday 18th June 10am to 7pm Asda, Newport
Wednesday 19th June 9.30am to 12.30pm Waitrose
Wednesday 19th June 3pm to 4pm Browns Golf, Sandown Esplanade
Thursday 20th June 10am to 4.30pm Main Co-op, Shanklin
Saturday 22nd June 3pm to 4pm Shared Lives office, Riverside Centre, Newport

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