Welcome to the world of home sharing, a meaningful and fulfilling experience of opening your home to an individual with a developmental disability. Discover the benefits of home sharing and why it can be a richly rewarding lifestyle choice. We’ll walk you through the process of becoming a home sharing provider, highlighting some of the key steps and providing links to valuable resources from Community Living BC (CLBC) and the Home Sharing Support Society BC (HSSSBC).
Step 1: Exploring Home Sharing and its Benefits
“Home Sharing” or “Co-Living” is a special arrangement where an adult with a disability lives with a person in their home and gets personalized support and services. It’s a win-win situation for both home sharing providers and the individuals they support to share their skills, experiences, and lives. This unique opportunity offers numerous benefits, including fostering meaningful connections, providing personalized support, and supporting people with disabilities to live independently in their community.
Home sharing brings some practical advantages, making it a cost-effective choice for both the home sharing provider and the individual receiving support. By offering a spare room or a separate living space, home sharing providers not only provide affordable housing to those who need it, but also receive financial contributions for their services in return. This arrangement enables home sharing providers to offset the costs of their own living expenses, making the cost of housing more affordable for both the provider and the person receiving support. It’s a mutually beneficial arrangement that helps both parties create a safe and supportive environment without straining their finances.
Home sharing offers a unique mix of flexibility, adaptability, companionship, and meaningful connections. As a home share provider, you can customize the arrangement to meet the specific needs of everyone involved. Through everyday activities, heartfelt conversations, and shared meals, you develop deep friendships and create a supportive and fulfilling atmosphere that goes beyond just living together.
Home Sharing can happen in a few different ways. The person with a disability can live with a family, a couple, a roommate, or in a separate suite in the home. Home Sharing is one of the services funded by CLBC to help eligible adults live independently with support in their community. Learn more about home sharing via this LINK
Step 2: Requirements and Screening Process
Becoming a home sharing provider involves working closely with a community living agency in British Columbia that coordinates home sharing services. These agencies are responsible for the screening and approval process, including completing a “Home Study Certification for Shared Living”. Learn more about it HERE
The following are some of the basic requirements to become a home sharing provider:
- Minimum of 19 years of age
- Satisfactory home study
- Satisfactory criminal record check
- First aid / CPR certificate
- Physician’s certification of good health
- Valid driver’s license
Step 3: CLBC Home Sharing Rates
CLBC has developed home sharing rates based on the support needs of the individual receiving services. This is called the “Guide to Support Allocation” (GSA). This assessment tool helps decide the amount of funding for each GSA level. Home Sharing Providers receive payments from both CLBC and the individual receiving support. Learn more about Home Share rates and how they are determined on HERE
Step 4: Handbook for Home Sharing Providers
To ensure that home sharing providers understand their roles and responsibilities, CLBC has developed a handbook. This resource reviews important standards, policies, and best practices. Access the Handbook for Home Sharing Providers via this LINK
Step 5: Home Share Standards
Home sharing providers are required to provide high quality services to ensure the well-being and safety of both home sharing providers and the people receiving supports. Learn more about home sharing standards via this LINK.
Step 6: Finding Home Share Agencies
To find home sharing agencies in your community that coordinate home sharing services, follow these simple steps recommended by CLBC:
- Begin by doing an online search using search engines like “Google”.
- Enter keywords such as “home sharing” or “community living agency” with the name of the community, for example, “Victoria” or “Prince George.”
- Scroll through the search results. Look for agencies that specifically mention providing home sharing services and support for adults with developmental disabilities. Usually, these agencies will have names that include “Community Living” or “Society.”
- Once you have chosen some potential agencies, reach out to them directly. Contact the agencies and inquire about their home sharing services. Let them know that you are interested in becoming a home sharing provider and would like more information about their application process.
- The agencies will guide you through their specific process to become a home sharing provider. They may ask you a few questions over the phone to better understand your suitability and preferences.
If you are unable to find any home sharing agencies in your community, or require additional information or assistance about home sharing, you can also reach out to us at email@example.com. We would be happy to help you on your journey to become a home sharing provider!