Keep your independent life by adjusting how you live

Posted on: 25 February 2014 by 50connect editorial

How the charity Crossroads Care CNL, in London, is supporting independent living with a home-share programme.

independent livingSarah Wallace, Head of Services at the Charity Crossroads Care CNL, talks about their Homeshare scheme and how this type of programme helps you to keep your independent life and is set to revolutionise the lives of many people, young and old.

In recent years, life has changed significantly for Felicity due to health problems that have progressed as she has got older, and she has not been able to maintain the lifestyle she was accustomed to without some support. In her search for new ways to maintain her independence, Felicity discovered the Homeshare programme, run by the charity Crossroads Care CNL in London.

The Homeshare scheme uses a ‘matching’ service which helped Felicity find someone to share her house with and provide the live-in support she needed to be independent. 

Homeshare matches an older person who needs help and support around the home, plus the companionship and security of having someone else there at night, with a younger person looking for affordable housing in London. With rents and house prices sky rocketing in recent years, Homeshare is proving increasingly popular with those from many professions and graduate students.

Felicity, the Householder, was matched with Bongi, a Social Worker, who was previously spending around £800 a month to rent a single room in London.  Now, Bongi is in a nicer home, her monthly outgoings have reduced by three quarters, and she has committed to help Felicity for at least ten hours per week in exchange. 

Felicity tells us “It works really well for me as it means that I have the security of someone in the house overnight. It also gives my family peace of mind as I have someone to help me with the tasks I find it difficult to do and a bit of company in the evenings. Bongi helps me with the cooking and some light housework and as great and younger company – it also helps me to feel young.”

But what does Bongi, the homesharer, think of the scheme “If it is the right match, I think the scheme works really well. It’s about finding the right balance and getting to know the other person, it takes over a month to bond and decide to continue with the programme, it is important to get into it with your eyes and heart open. It is great programme, but it is a commitment at the same time.”

Bongi says that “It really is the perfect arrangement for someone with a calm personality who has a goal to save for future plans “.

Felicity says that her family are very supportive of the arrangement describing Homeshare as “the ideal solution, helping to keep you young, providing independence and peace of mind.”

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