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Shared Lives services are about sharing lives, families, homes, interests, experiences and skills with people who need support to live their lives to the full.

For example, Shared Lives Carers and the people they support might go on holiday together, or go to each others' family parties and events.

How much time does it take?

The amount of time spent together depends on individual needs. It can be:

  • A few hours a week during the day
  • A short time, such as a weekend, perhaps while a family carer has a break
  • Full time (you live with someone for a short or long period)

Who is it for?

Shared Lives is for adults aged 18 or over who need help and support.

They may be vulnerable, or unable to live alone because of their age.

Or they may have a:

  • Learning disability
  • Physical disability
  • Mental health problem
  • Sensory difficulties
  • Other health issues

About the carers

Shared Lives carers provide accommodation, care and support in their own homes.

The carers are carefully selected members of the public who are recruited, trained and supported by the Oldham Shared Lives Team.

What's on offer?

Each arrangement is planned to meet individual needs, and proposed arrangements can be accepted or rejected by participants.

Professional support is given throughout the placement, and participants are welcome to stay in touch with their own family and friends.

  • Develop skills and meet new people in the comfort of a carer’s home
  • A stepping stone towards more independence
  • A private bedroom
  • A comfortable and friendly household
  • As much help as you need
  • Support to pay your bills, do your shopping and arrange appointments.


Shared Lives carers receive a fee for each placement that they offer.

Participants pay the carer:
  • Rent (usually from Housing Benefit)
  • A standard amount for food and a share of the household bills (from DWP benefits)
  • Possibly a contribution toward care and support (worked out by the Financial Assessment Team)

Adult Services will also pay the carer.

Kinship support

Some of carers offer support to people who live on their own or share a house (this is called kinship support).

Kinship support is tailored to individual needs, whether it's 1 hour or 16 hours per week.

The support offered can be around shopping, managing household bills, money, attending and arranging appointments and ensuring medication is taken correctly.

The carer will also offer support with household chores, and emotional support (if required).