When news happens send us your pictures, video and views. Text BE to 80360 or contact us by email
Could you help transform the life of an adult with learning disabilities?
6:00pm Thursday 4th October 2012 in Latest
A BOURNEMOUTH family is urging people to come forward and help give adults with learning disabilities more independence.
Anna Reeves and her family are shared lives carers for Bournemouth Borough Council, meaning they effectively foster adults with learning disabilities on a long-term basis.
Having been a shared lives carer for six years, Anna has seen firsthand the benefits of the scheme and is now speaking out to promote the programme.
She said: “The application process is very similar to fostering.
“You don’t have to have any experience, it’s just local families or single people – it’s open to anybody.
“You can have up to three people and they live with you as part of your family.”
Anna currently has three adults living at her home in Leybourne Avenue, Redhill and she said the system helped to give them more independence than if they were living at home or in residential care.
She said: “One of my ladies is 45, so it’s just not appropriate for her to still be living at home with her parents.
“ A parent-child dynamic is very different when the child is an adult. But these people still have that support.
“In an ideal world we are a stepping stone to independence.
“Our first lady came to us with a lot of anxiety issues and she went on to get married and have a baby.”
Anna admits that at times the work can be tough, and said it was tricky finding the right balance when she first became a shared lives carer and her own children were in their teens.
But she added: “I do enjoy it, it’s very rewarding.
“You forget sometimes because you see them every day, but when I look back and see how far people have come it’s lovely.”
- To find out more about becoming a shared lives carer please call Helen Homes on 01202 458799 or Zoe Irvin on 01202 456803. Or you can email helen. firstname.lastname@example.org or zoe email@example.com.