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Hertfordshire County Council

How Shared Lives can help you

Shared Lives helps you join a family home with trained carers supporting you to do the things you like. It is often for adults with physical or learning disabilities, but could also be a good option for older people struggling with daily tasks.

Finding your family

We always make sure you're happy with your chosen host family before you start. Arrangements can be short term, long term or even emergency placements.

When finding a carer for you, we look at:

  • your age, where you live, and your health and support needs
  • what kind of family you'd like to spend time with – a person on their own or a family, someone in a town or a village, someone with pets or children
  • what things are important to you – what you believe in, your hobbies, what you like to eat.

We regularly check to make sure everything is all right.

The referral process

  1. When your social worker or service finder team has referred you, we will review your information. If you are suitable for the programme, we'll look for potential matches from our available Shared Lives carers.

  2. If we find a match and you like the sound of them, we'll arrange for you to meet them, along with your social worker and the Shared Lives team.

  3. You can visit them several times before deciding if you want to live with them. You can meet their families and try an overnight stay, to make sure the match is right for everyone.

  4. If everyone is happy, we will set a start date for the placement, and create a 'care and support plan' for you.