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“People are not doing things for me all the time and this makes me happy”

In this speech from our 2018 conference, James Rosborough, Ambassador explains the effect that being in Shared Lives has had on his independence and his ability to pursue his goals and dreams.

“My names is James.

I have been living in a Shared Lives arrangement with Andy and his family for nearly eight years. Before this I lived in a specialist home for over 20 years.

Enjoying my freedom

I now like the freedom I have, to do the things that I enjoy, when I want to do them, just like most other people. I can choose to go out, without telling anyone, and meet friends in my favourite café. I can do most things for myself, but can I get help when I need it. People are not doing things for me all the time and this makes me happy.

Making my own choices

I now have my own house and garden, something I never thought would happen to me. I can choose to go to Karate, order a pizza or go to the pub, with or without Andy.

Giving and getting support

I like feeling a part of things, being a Shared Lives Ambassador, giving talks to help people know more about epilepsy, working with Local Social and visiting lots of new places. I like helping people and they let me do it now. People listen to my opinions and ideas, although I am not always right, this also makes me happy.

Epilepsy does not now stop me from doing anything and my health has improved since having a shared life.

I am very, very proud to be a Shared Lives Ambassador.

Thank you.”