Home Sharing as described by CLBC.
Home sharing is a residential option in which an adult with a developmental disability shares a home with someone who is contracted to provide ongoing support. Home sharing may be offered by community-based agencies or directly by CLBC. Homes may be owned or rented by the home sharing provider or by the individual requiring support. In some situations, the home sharing provider’s family lives in the home. In others, people live together as roommates in a reciprocal relationship.
In most situations, home sharing involves very close relationships. The individuals within the home share not only their physical space, but also their lives. The members of the home spend a lot of time together and are actively involved in one another’s daily activities. In other situations, the home sharing arrangement is characterized by more independent relationships. Members of the home generally go their own ways and come together at specific times or for specific purposes.
Individuals tend to choose this option because it provides an ideal balance of support and independence. It is entirely person-centred in that it allows individuals to select a home sharing provider and home environment that meet their unique goals and preferences. Support is flexible and evolves according to the individuals’ changing needs. For some, home sharing is a stepping-stone to even greater independence. For others, it is an arrangement that will last for many years.
The number of individuals selecting this residential option has increased by more than 350% in the past 15 years and continues to show steady growth in popularity (13% since 2002). It is the fastest growing residential option within the province and there are now approximately 2700 adults who live in home sharing arrangements funded by CLBC. Home sharing occurs in virtually every community either through CLBC or a qualified service-provision agency.
Principles of Quality
The following have been identified as principles of high quality home sharing arrangements:
- support is provided in a manner that respects the individual’s right to make choices, lead planning, and direct service
- services are regularly reviewed and appropriately adjusted to meet the evolving needs and preferences of the individual
- individuals have the opportunity to participate in valued social roles, experience the rights of citizenship, and contribute to community in a personally meaningful way
- individuals are treated with dignity and are respected regardless of their religious, cultural, or lifestyle affiliations
- individuals have the right to live in a safe environment
- individuals have the opportunity for personal growth and skill development
- family, friends, and members of the individual’s personal network are welcomed by those providing support and their involvement is encouraged