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"I have found being a Carer one of the most rewarding and warming experiences. When my mum and I welcomed D into our lives we did it thinking we would be giving him a lovely family home, however it has turned into so much more than that. D is family, he is my brother and I don't think I will ever see him as anything but that. We have so much to thank him for as when he came and lived with us we didn't realise quite how much we weren't embracing life. My dad had passed a few years previously and Mum and I did lots to actively block things out, we didn't celebrate Christmas, we worked lots of hours and generally didn't spend much time on us. D completely changed that, he made Christmas all about family again, he made life magical as cheesy as that sounds. I have since moved out of the family home, with D staying behind with mum, but through Shared Lives D comes to me regularly on respite so our little 'family unit' is as strong as ever. So what started out as us thinking we were helping someone else actually has turned out to be him helping us, he really has made our lives so much more fulfilling and myself, my mum and now my other half and daughter can't imagine life without him. If anyone is considering becoming a carer don't just think about what you can offer to someone else but how much they are going to enrich your lives."

"My wife and I have been Shared lives Carer’s for 7 years to one service user who has been with us for a total of 11 years. She was a foster child with us before this. Therefore, we came to Shared Lives through a transition process from Foster Care to Adult Care.
Before Susan became 18, we found out about Shared lives and decided that Shared Lives was the best route to go as Susan has assessed needs. When it came time for the transition, it all went very smoothly with a lot of support from the Shared lives Officer. We had to do relevant adult training some of which was online. We have now been Shared Lives Carer’s for 7 years and we still get the support if we need it. We find the Shared Lives Officers friendly and always there to support us when we need it."

(Names have been anonymised to protect confidentiality)

Page updated: 30/06/2022 Page updated by: Luke O'Donnell

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