Shared Living is the collective term used for a range of approaches that support people in one of the most natural and beneficially ways possible – real people connecting, supporting and sharing their lives and their homes.
Western Australia has a strong history of exploring and supporting innovations that promote peoples’ choice, control and ability to determine and direct their own lives. Across Western Australia Shared Living has been an approach that people have been using for over 10 years with considerable success, offering so much more than assistance or support, but real connections and relationships.
Shared Living aims to reflect the way in which naturally formed relationships work and develop. Shared Living’s primary focus is about sharing lives which means there are benefits to both parties; the people who require support and the people offering support; both parties have lives to share and experiences to contribute, offering everyone enriched experiences and enhanced qualities of life.
So often, people who share their lives and their homes report the enormous benefits to their own lives and their families.
Home is the platform for people to develop reciprocal relationships where the person is accepted and included in the home and lives of the support person, whilst also being supported to live their own life.
Shared Living can develop new opportunities and everyday life experiences for the person that they may not have otherwise experienced in other more formal and structured support arrangements. Similarly, Shared Living Supporters have the potential to have new experiences they may not have otherwise experienced were it not for their relationship with the individual they are supporting.
Shared Living, however, is not:
• A “placement” where children and adults living with disability are placed with a family or persons to ensure a “roof over their heads.”
• A facility, hostel or other grouped service based on disability, funding or service requirement.
• An arrangement where the individual or individuals are supported by a formal roster of employed support workers.
• An arrangement where individuals, or Shared Living support persons, are excluded from each other’s home, life or community.
• An accommodation setting where individuals living with disability are grouped together and cared for by a house couple residing with them.
• To the exclusion of individuals with complex needs.
• Trying to meet the support needs of the individual by fitting them into a preexisting suite of service options provided by the organisation without regard for individuality and flexibility.
If you want to know more about Shared living, how it might work, and chat with people who it is working for, contact us on 08 9481 0101
Please click below for the resource booklet ‘My life, your life, our life’