This “Scaling up Shared Lives in Health” blog will focus on Bolton, where the Bolton CCG, in conjunction with GMW and Bolton Council, have been successful in receiving NHS England funding to develop Shared Lives in the area.

The new funding will enable the Shared Lives scheme, which is run by Bolton Cares (Bolton Council’s local authority trading company), to offer more arrangements for vulnerable adults to stay with trained Shared Lives carers in family homes, as an alternative to being admitted to hospital or before they return to their own home after a hospital stay.

Shared Lives is already a popular option for older people in Bolton, but this funding will mean the scheme can expand, to offer more support to people with mental health needs and offer an alternative option for people following a stay in hospital, before they return home to their own homes.

Some people have had to move outside of Bolton to receive the support they need in specialist mental health settings, but this programme will work to bring people back into Bolton, but within the support of a family home to ensure they remain safe and well within their communities.

Bolton have run a well-established Shared Lives scheme for over 30 years, and on 31st July 2016, Bolton Care and Support Ltd began trading as Bolton Cares, to continue providing a range of care and support for adults in the community, of which the Shared Lives scheme is one of the options. 

The project will provide employment for 1 new co-ordinator at Bolton Cares in the first year, as well as self-employment opportunities for many more Shared Lives carers. The closing date for the co-ordinator post is 28th February, for details please see: http://www.boltoncares.org.uk/work-with-us/

Chief Executive of Bolton Cares, John Livesey, said: “Shared Lives a wonderful service that really works for the benefit of both service users and carers. The people who use our service become part of a loving family and our carers are experienced in what they do and get so much fulfilment from helping others.

“Since forming Bolton Cares as a not-for-profit company, this is the first major funding boost for us and shows commitment from our partners to developing and improving local adult social care services. We’re delighted with the outcome and looking forward to recruiting more carers and meeting new service users.”

Dr Wirin Bhatiani, Chair of NHS Bolton Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “Over the past few months NHS Bolton Clinical Commissioning Group has been working in partnership with Shared Lives, Bolton Council and Greater Manchester Mental Health Services (GMMHS) on a bid to access match funding for a three year project with Shared Lives Plus and NHS England. 

“I am delighted that Bolton has been awarded this funding as one of only five CCG areas across England and Wales.  The bid concentrated on improving access to Shared Lives and as a result more positive outcomes for people with mental health needs and/or learning disabilities.”

Karen Wolstenholme, Registered Manager of Shared Lives in Bolton is “delighted with the success of being able to grow and expand services in this area and looks forward to successful “matching” which will enable people to live to their lives to their full potential in the community of their choice.”

 

Published in NHS Project Blog

Scaling up Shared Lives in Healthcare - Learning more about our new partner areas

Fiona and Jenni have been promoting the Shared Lives and NHS England partnership and building relationships with the newly announced CCGs and Shared Lives schemes who will be taking the project forward. The five areas who will be receiving a share of NHS England funding to develop the Shared Lives model for health are Barnsley, Bolton, South Tees, Southern Derbyshire and a partnership of Bristol, North Somerset and South Gloucester. For more information about these announcements click here.

As well as health being the focus of Shared Lives week, it was also the main theme at our England conference which took place in Bristol this week. We were thrilled to be joined by James Sanderson, Director of Personalisation and Choice and Eileen Mitchell from the Person Centred Care Team at NHS England for a full day of seminars, workshops and presentations. You will be able to read more about our health themed conference shortly and see a video of James Sanderson’s presentation.

As part of the programme, we have identified 2 Accelerator Regions which will support the scaling up of Shared Lives across a region. These regions have now been identified as the North East and the Bristol, North Somerset, South Gloucester (BNSSG) regions. Next week we will be advertising to find a part time Regional Officer in each of the regions, vacancy details will be posted here

Over the next ten weeks we are going to do a feature on each of the five areas focusing on the schemes and projects that will benefit from the funding. We will be asking:

  • What is the outline of your project and who will it help?
  • How many people will benefit?
  • What support needs will you focus on?
  • How will you build partnerships with CCGs to develop Shared Lives?
  • What does success look like for your area in developing Shared Lives within health?

What do you believe the future looks like for Shared Lives within the NHS?

We value everyone who supports this programme, and we would like to offer you the opportunity to put forward any questions you have about the five areas receiving funding to develop Shared Lives in health.

You can do this by tweeting us @SharedLivesPlus or emailing Jenni Kirkham on: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

Published in NHS Project Blog

 

Hello everyone and welcome to our latest blog on our work with NHS England. You may have recently seen Fiona Clark’s guest blog on the NHS England website, if not you can read it here.

Shared Lives Plus have had a hectic few weeks with the NHS programme, Fiona and Jenni are still travelling around the country on their journey to visit Shared Lives schemes and CCGs who are applying for match funding to develop Shared Lives for health in their area. It’s been a hectic couple of weeks for both, but they have been ‘privileged’ to meet so many dedicated people along the way.

Last week Fiona and Jenni took park in a Shared Lives Plus seminar on Intermediate Care, giving presentations and leading workshops.

 

intermediate care

 

There were nearly 70 delegates from across England and Wales and they were a mix of people such as health commissioners, hospital staff, social care workers and Shared Lives.

Jenni Kirkham, NHS Programme Officer says: “It was great to be with so many people who are keen to work with us to develop a Shared Lives model for Intermediate Care and the next year is going to be exciting to watch Shared Lives schemes recruiting carers who are ready to support people at their homes following a stay in hospital. “

The areas who are applying for match funding for the NHS England programme have until the end of September to get their final applications in to us. Shared Lives Plus and NHS England will be making the decision as to which areas will receive match funding in the first week of October and we hope to make the public announcement in mid-October, in Shared Lives week. Check out our Twitter account (@SharedLivesPlus) for updates on all NHS related information and announcements on Shared Lives Plus week, including the annual Parliamentary Reception on 19 October 2016.

With Jenni and Fiona travelling the country at the moment, working with and visiting schemes and CCGs, now is the perfect time for everyone to get to know the faces behind the great work that Shared Lives Plus is doing with NHS England.

This week we will be learning all about Jenni Kirkham, our NHS Programme Officer, who as all our staff will tell you is very enthusiastic about not only her   own work with the NHS but developing and spreading awareness of Shared Lives as a whole.

I sat down with Jenni earlier in the week for a chat about her career so far and her work with developing Shared Lives with the NHS.

Jenni, Can you tell me about your career so far and how it has lead to you working on the NHS programme for Shared Lives Plus?

“My career to date has been varied, but has the common denominator is that it has always involved working with people. In my early days I got a job at the local authority housing team, working in customer service and managing the housing allocations process with people. From there I moved into social services and trained as a community occupational therapist assistant, which meant I did assessments and then fitted equipment in people’s homes that meant they were able to live well at home.

I have worked as a deputy manager of a hostel for homeless families too. The idea of “home” seems to be quite central to my career; I spent the next 8 years as Care Manager of various Home Instead Senior Care companies in Merseyside. I have now worked for Shared Lives Plus for 18 months, the first 12 months I worked in Support and Quality, supporting Shared Lives schemes with guidance and queries. In 2014 I also spent a year out in Australia! I prepared to spend a year travelling from place to place, but I actually found a place I felt I could call home and settled there for 9 of the 12 months- once again reinforcing to me how important it is to have a place you can call home. “

Jenni, everyone at Shared Lives Plus admires your enthusiasm and you clearly enjoy your role, what is it you love about your work with the NHS?

“I love that I am able to work towards raising the profile of Shared Lives within health, where for many people Shared Lives is an entirely new concept. I find that working with the staff and carers at Shared Lives schemes is inspirational and I enjoy working with them to develop and grow their schemes, to enable more people to have the choice of living in a home with family around them.

Each time people hear of the ways in which a person has blossomed when being supported within a Shared Lives arrangement, it raises the expectations of what people can achieve and how people with long-term health conditions can live well in their community- no one should be limited to where or how they live, just because of a lack of options in their area forces them into inappropriate residential or institutional accommodation.”

You can read one of the amazing Shared Lives arrangements Jenni is referring to in the here

 

Published in NHS Project Blog

Hello everyone and welcome to our latest “Scaling up Shared Lives in Healthcare” blog. This week we’re celebrating the work that our Shared Lives carers do in helping people with learning disabilities have the highest quality of life possible. As you may know Shared Lives Plus has recently received a £1.75 million pound grant from NHS England. This is to help CCGs (Clinical Commissioning Groups) and NHS Trusts in England to offer Shared Lives locally as an alternative approach to traditional healthcare for people.

Since our last update, Fiona Clark, (the NHS Programme Director) and Jenni Kirkham, (NHS Programme Officer) have set off on their travels around the country to visit the CCG’s and Shared Lives schemes who are interested in developing Shared Lives services within their communities . They are covering the length and breadth of the country to support the CCGs and schemes to complete the work needed to be eligible for the match funding available from NHS England to develop the scheme.

With care transforming as society and the NHS adjust to circumstances, we believe it is important that people have a choice to live a life that they are happy with, and one which is suitable for every person’s individual needs and aspirations.

James Picture 1

We decided that the best way to show everyone how Shared Lives can have a positive and meaningful impact on a person living with a learning disability, was to let James, who has lived experience, tell you himself.

James says; “I don’t feel like I have a learning disability, but I know that I’ve got one, because of all the support I get now in Shared Lives. Before I came to Shared Lives I was not allowed to do things I could do and always needed staff with me- often doing things I could do myself. “

James has epilepsy and a learning disability. He was diagnosed with epilepsy when he was 6 years old and then until the age of 40 was in specialist care. Firstly at St Elizabeth’s in Hertfordshire, very near his family home and then residential care at the National Centre for Epilepsy in Chalfont, Buckinghamshire.

James feels he did not learn new things before he joined Shared Lives but now he has more freedom to do the things he wants to do.

The Shared Lives model will support people who have needs which make it hard for them to live on their own. This is achieved by matching them with a Shared Lives carer to share their family and lives, receiving care and support in the community. People using Shared Lives may have learning disabilities, dementia, mental health problems or other needs which require long or short term support. It will offer them the opportunity to either live with their matched and approved Shared Lives carer, or visit them regularly for day support or overnight breaks.

James’ Shared Lives carer has had a remarkable impact on his life, helping James become more confident and independent. He now feels confident to go to town and shop, have lunch in his favourite place.

James:   “My life is friendlier, Andy, and others, have helped me make more friends. Andy has helped me to do more things that I can do myself now – cooking, the washing, ironing, walking out with Bronte the dog- normal stuff that everyone does.”laces and meet new friends

James picture 2

When Andy asked James, a few years ago, what he wanted his life to be like, the reply was ‘more friends and a job that I can get paid for’. Since then this is what James and Andy have been working towards.

Andy said: “Now, building up James’ community connections’ and using his skills to feel valued and have purpose are key to a good and happy life. The frequency of epileptic seizures has significantly decreased to the extent that he has not had a seizure for over 18 months. James says he is ‘not bored now’ and that there is’ always something to look forward to and do’. James can get up in the morning, something he just couldn’t do before and his thinking and decision making is vastly improved. However, this has not always been the case.”

A few years ago James epileptic seizures meant that he has spent time in hospitals. Between having seizures and taking his medication, James was prevented from doing much in the past and feels he was almost forgotten.

In December 2012 epileptic seizures clustered and in the next two months James had 12 hospital admissions for varying lengths of time.  All local hospitals and one in North London tried totreat James.  Each time more medication was prescribed that had significant impact on James without decreasing the seizures.  James was put in an induced coma and spent 3 weeks in Critical Care.

James and ANDY 1

He was prevented from doing much in the past and feels he was almost forgotten. We decided to ask him, if he thought that people in hospital waiting for a place to provide them with care, could benefit from Shared Lives?

Being a part of a Shared Lives arrangement provides people with a family environment, independence and allows people to live the life they want. James, with the help of Andy’s support has become a part of the community, volunteering at the local Country Market every week which he loves. He has also has just started a self- funded training post in a local shop that could lead to a job in a large supermarket.James said: “Yes, they could.” He says that when he came out of hospital, after many visits because of epilepsy, he was supported by people he knew and who knew him really well. He was in a place he felt safe and comfortable and this helped him get better. He believes other people would feel the same.

James and Andy picture 2James’ life has completely changed for the better. He gives a training session to new carers about epilepsy once a month, has helped lead a workshop on Community Connecting at the Shared Lives Plus conference and is part of a team that supports health checks for Shared Lives schemes.

He presents his story, ‘Two Men and a Dog’ about how Shared Lives has changed his life, to various audiences. James is also a Co- Director, with Andy and one other, of a registered Community Interest Company, called ‘Local Social’ that aims to support socially isolated people connect with their community. Andy works with James on all these activities that use James’ knowledge and skills to develop a confident and fulfilling life.

Published in NHS Project Blog

Hello and welcome to our second “Scaling up Shared Lives in Healthcare” blog. We’ve been very busy the past couple of weeks and would like to keep you all updated on what we are doing.

As you may know in May this year, CCG’s and NHS trusts England were asked to write to us at Shared Lives Plus, to express their interest in applying for match funding to develop Shared Lives in their local area for people with healthcare needs. After applying some shortlisting criteria to each of the expressions of interest we invited areas in England to write up more detailed project plans, budgets, and formalise their initial ideas. The pro forma template we created with the expertise of the wider Shared Lives Plus team was finalised. This allowed the areas that were successful in the first round to work up their projects to continue their applications for match funding through the programme.

They have been telling us how they see the Shared Lives model being used, to be able to support the local needs and priorities of their local government. We are really excited to see how they think they can make it happen.

We are starting to arrange dates to go and visit each of the areas and visit all of the project leads at their CCG and Shared Lives schemes. Each of the areas is still and application process with none of them being agreed yet or match funding. We would really like to involve Shared Lives carers in the process and will be looking to include their existing Shared Lives carers in these early conversations. Shared Lives Plus want to ensure that they know about the programme and the amazing potential for their local areas.

The Shared Lives model supports people who have needs which make it hard for them to live on their own. It matches people who may have a learning disability, dementia, mental health problems or other needs to Shared Lives carers. They share their family and lives, get care and support whilst getting involved and building relationships in the community.

Shared Lives can improve people’s quality of life, it did for Anne. She is a vulnerable lady with a moderate learning disability. Anne came to Shared Lives due to her vulnerability and needs around her care and support. In the start she had difficulty walking and used a wheelchair frequently to get around. She had low self-esteem and confidence and had very poor eyesight. After moving in with her Shared Lives carer Georgia, it was apparent that Anne’s mobility problems stemmed from wearing ill-fitting shoes. It was also discovered that her poor eyesight was due to wearing glasses that were not prescribed for her.

Her first days with her Shared Lives carer were spent having her eyes tested and purchasing new glasses, buying new shoes and a whole new wardrobe of outfits that she chose and having her hair done at the hairdressers. Ann has a new lease of life, she enjoys spending time at the gardens where she works and has a good friendship with Georgia and the other members of Shared Lives carer’s family and friends. They have holidays abroad and in the UK.

Anne said “I love Georgia; I have a lovely bedroom and a nice comfortable bed with my own telly”. Georgia believes that Ann has “found her voice”; she is making choices for herself and is becoming a confident young woman.

Thanks for reading our latest blog, we’ll continue to keep you all updated on what is going on in the exciting months ahead.

You can get more information and read our previous blog here

Published in NHS Project Blog

HOLIDAY STORIES – Share your holiday experiences here!

 

August 2015

Geoffrey visits Suffolk!

In August 2015 Geoffrey from the Ealing Shared Lives scheme went on Holiday to Suffolk to stay with Sally and Brian. The fortnight was packed full of activities.
Geoffrey’s visit took in Thorpness, ships at Felixstowe, Ipswich Museum, and Framlington Castle. Ice Creams were shared, walks taken and there was even a trip to see the BBC Concert Orchestra!

Geoffrey experienced the camper van lifestyle – along with the family dogs, ate fish and chips and drank tea in the open air, and overall a fantastic time was had by all.
Catherine from Ealing Shared Lives scheme tell us that “Geoffrey had a lovely time with Sally and Brian. His carer said he keeps talking about his stay in Suffolk”


You can read the full story and look at the holiday snaps in this document here. Geoffreys_holiday.pdf

 

June 2015 

Joe Waring is a holiday carer in Norfolk, who with his family support up to nine different individuals each year, mostly from the London borough of Wandsworth. Most people come several times a year and sometimes with a friend.
Joe wrote about two people who come for holidays.


June, who is 52 years old, comes to stay 6 or 7 times a year, having first come about 6 years ago. She sometimes comes on her own, and sometimes with a friend. She is very close to her mother and brother, and I think she likes being part of another family: myself, my wife and our 18 year old daughter. June’s mother is also reassured that the care for June focuses on her individual needs. June is very sociable and has a great sense of humour. She loves meeting our friends either at our house or theirs, and having a laugh, sharing stories and food and, I’m afraid, sharing a glass of wine, too! We go out every day to somewhere of interest in Norfolk, either in Norwich, where we live, in the nearby Norfolk Broads countryside, or to the coast. June particularly likes seeing the horse she recently “adopted” in a local horse sanctuary, and going to the amusements at Great Yarmouth. June always brings enough money to buy presents from Norfolk for her family and friends back in London.

Jack has also been coming to us for about 6 years. He always brings a pool cue and enjoys going to the local ten-pin bowling alley to bowl and play pool. He has been beating me at both for all of those 6 years, and I’m getting a bit tired waiting for his luck to run out! Jack especially likes our dog, Daisy, and volunteers to join us walking her every day. Like June, who he sometimes comes with, Jack is very sociable and always wants to meet our friends and family. He will sometimes help prepare a meal for a dinner party, and likes to dress up for the occasion in his best clothes. Jack likes going to museums- there are some great ones in Norfolk- and has recently gone a couple of times to the local cathedral to light a candle in memory of his father. Before he first did this, Jack had never gone into a church since his father’s funeral 10 years previously. Although Jack usually stays with a friend, he always comes on his own a few weeks before Christmas, when he buys presents for all his family, and wraps and tags them all carefully before taking them home.

Thanks Joe for sharing the stories and offering wonderful holiday experiences

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