Become a Shared Lives Carer

Page updated on: 06/09/2023

Carers come from every walk of life, their common bond is the time to care and the room to share. Our carers can help people to turn their lives around, gain confidence, self-worth, and the skills to be independent.

Shared Lives is all about relationships, helping someone grow or maintain their confidence, make new friends, or learn new skills. It’s a way for them to flourish as a person – and for you to bring your whole self to the role.

If you are patient, kind and have a passion for helping others to achieve the best life for them, and

  • Have a stable home situation
  • Are willing to attend 5 days training prior to being approved as a carer
  • Available to meet regularly with an assessor
  • Able to provide references (including one from a GP) and willing to undertake a Disclosure and Barring Check.

You may be the kind of person we are looking for. You do not require special qualifications or specific experience.  You will be supported by our experienced Learning and Development Team.

Enjoy a stable income

Shared Lives care is a well-established and growing service within the UK and one which local authorities are investing in. Although Shared Lives services cannot guarantee continuous ‘work’, Shared Lives income is often very stable, comparable to fostering, with many Shared Lives carers having a track record of receiving a regular payment for one or more individuals living with them or visiting them regularly for many years and even decades. As with any social care service, each individual has the right to change their choices at any time, which means that income cannot be contractually guaranteed, but the stability of income can be greater than other kinds of support work.

Earn whilst working from home

Shared Lives carers are paid a weekly fee to support someone living with them long term, as well as a contribution towards accommodation and household costs, such as food, electricity and water.

Shared Lives Carers are self-employed and receive a fee, paid monthly via the Local Authority. Fee amounts vary according to the type of arrangement you offer (sessional support, short breaks or long-term arrangements), how many people you support and what level of support you provide.  People providing Long Term and Short Break accommodation usually receive between £317 to £688 per week (£45.28 to £98.28 per night).  

 HMRC makes certain payments tax-free for Shared Lives Carers which can make all the difference financially.

Short Breaks Provided for Long Term Carers

In addition, Shared Lives Carers providing long term arrangements receive up to 28 nights paid respite per year.

We support our Shared Lives Carers by providing them with their own Shared Lives Support Worker who will contact them regularly including visiting them at home. The support Worker will provide advice and guidance as well as practical and emotional support. This support is backed up by a network of Shared Lives staff as well as Shared Lives carers across Carmarthenshire, Pembrokeshire, and Ceredigion. During the evening and weekends Shared Lives Carers also have access to the out of hours duty Social Work Team.

Shared Lives Carers are encouraged to take part in Shared Lives Carers’ Support Groups and are required to take up membership of the National Association of Shared Lives - Shared Lives Plus UK. This organisation is able to offer personal liability Insurance, a further requirement of approval.

You can apply to become a Shared Lives Carer by emailing your details to

We will need your: name, address and telephone number and where you heard about our scheme.

Once we have received your application, we will arrange to visit you either face-to-face or virtually.  You will need to complete an assessment to get a clear picture of who you are. The assessment is on-line so you will need basic computer skills to complete this. A Recruitment and Training Worker can support you with this.   The assessment includes a combination of checks (including DBS), references and home visits.

Once your assessment is underway you will receive comprehensive mandatory training, this will give you an insight into the role ahead.

The last part of the process is for your application to be assessed by our independent approval panel who make a final decision.

Once you have been approved, we can start the matching process and our team will contact you to discuss potential referrals.