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Celebrating Shared Lives Week 2014

Posted 10:53AM on Tuesday 14 October 2014

Shared Lives Week is here to celebrate and raise awareness of the amazing work Shared Lives carers do across the UK. The theme for Shared Lives Week 2014 is “Living Good Lives”. Our Families Matter Shared Lives Service has been affiliated with Shared Lives for many years now. The Service provides respite for long–term carers and their loved ones by offering placements with volunteer families. It might be for a couple of hours a week, a weekend, a month, or a more substantial commitment.

Florence Corry has provided respite care for Ann for a long weekend every month. It’s an arrangement that has endured for 10 years. Florence has even had First Aid training since Ann was diagnosed with diabetes.

Ann’s main carer is her sister Joanne, who describes the weekend breaks as “my lifeline.”

Liz Palmer, Service Manager, said: “The story of Florence and Ann is just one of the many success stories we have had, thanks to the willingness of families to open their doors to others. It can be a hugely rewarding experience and enables people to live fulfilling and active lives. Those being offered respite make new friends and often develop a long–term friendship with the placement providers. At the same time, their regular carers are given some space and time to pursue their own interests and friendships. Even if it’s just a few hours a week to go shopping, it can make a huge difference.”

Staff from our Families Matter Shared Lives Service will be providing information and answering questions in a number of locations in Belfast and Bangor throughout this week. Full details can be found here.

If you are interested in finding out more about the work of our Families Matter Shared Lives Service or if you are interested in becoming a Placement Provider please contact Liz Palmer on 028 90741271 /