Information for Sharers considering supporting a Family
Share and Care Homeshare matches helpful and caring people to live with Families who would benefit from an extra pair of hands; many Families who seek the support of a live-in Sharer do so as they have a child or young adult family member who is disabled or has learning difficulties.
Who it helps
Share and Care specialises in introducing live-in Sharers to Families. Our Sharers come from all walks of life, and many different cultures and backgrounds, although typically we require a high level of clear spoken English for the purpose of good communication. Sharers in the Family homeshare scheme are typically aged 21 and over and are either working or studying. They are warm, personable and reliable people who enjoy the company and conversations of other people. The scheme is a very low cost option for accommodation, with Sharers paying £5-£6 per day, depending on location.
Based on the concept of exchange, the Sharer benefits from low cost accommodation, whilst the Family receives a practical helper/companion/chaperone in and around their home.
Please note: The Sharer is not permitted to give any personal or nursing care to the person they live with.
How it works
The Sharer agrees to give 15 hours of support each week – usually a mix of practical help and friendly companionship – in exchange for a bedroom and a share of the use of the Householder’s property and facilities. Sharers must be in the home at least four evenings per week and sleep in the property a minimum of six nights each week, or all seven. It is usually a flexible arrangement with the practical duties including anything from shopping, cooking nutritious meals, light cleaning, gardening, taking out bins and changing lightbulbs through to accompanying to appointments, on shopping trips or to social events. The companionship aspect may include sharing some meals with the children/ young adults, playing a game, watching TV together, accompanying them to activities or house sitting animals when the family are away. The Sharer continues their regular job or studies during the day. Ideally the Sharer will work or study part-time, arriving home late afternoon/early evening. The 15 hours of practical help/company is normally spread out over the week, and given during the evenings and a few hours over the weekends.
Who can be a Sharer?
Anyone who is settled in a regular job or who is studying in the UK. Potential Sharers must know the timings and location of their job or course before applying. The 15 hours of practical help/companionship is normally spread out over the week. Sharers are ideally over 21 years old, have had some experience in running a home, are confident cooks, are friendly and caring and would welcome the opportunity of affordable accommodation and making a new friend. Except in rare circumstances, most arrangements last for at least a year, and many for several years. We do therefore look for Sharers who will be in a position to commit for at least one year.
We interview potential Sharers for each individual situation to ensure careful matching of a Sharer with a Family. It is beneficial to the longevity of a Share that they have interests in common and that the Sharer is someone who has genuine interest in living within, and supporting, a family with children/young adults. In return the Sharer benefits from the opportunity of living in a family environment, which can help them integrate into a new community whilst providing them with affordable accommodation. Share and Care aims to find the Sharer a place to call home.
Duties of the Sharer
The Sharer agrees to give 15 hours of practical help and/or companionship (NB not personal or nursing care) each week. As opposed to a lodger who may come and go without necessarily having to let their landlord know about his/her movements, a Sharer has a responsibility towards the Family whose home they are sharing. They are expected to be willing to spend four evenings at home each week to give practical help and company. They are expected to keep the Family notified of their general movements – e.g. when having an evening out, if planning a weekend away.
Share and Care charges both the Sharer and the Family a small monthly facilitation fee. There is no exchange of money between the Sharer and the Family.
Our fees to Sharers are as follows:
- London Service – £150 + VAT [£180 per month], which is equivalent to under £6 per day
- UK Service – £125 + VAT [£150 per month], which is under £5 per day
On going support
Share and Care Homeshare provides regular, on-going support to both the Sharer and the Family. Our objective is to monitor the relationship to encourage and support a happy, friendly share and, if needed, to help clarify and resolve any issues should they arise. The Share and Care team is always willing to provide a listening ear and balanced advice, and aims to provide a professional and friendly service.