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Home Share Scheme

Make a difference and give someone a rest in an empty nest!

Have you got a spare room and would you like some company? Have you ever thought of inviting a person with a disability to stay in your home for a weekend on a regular basis? Have you ever thought of what a difference this could make to a person’s life and to your own?

Cheshire Ireland is looking for ‘Hosts’ who open their home and their lives to a person with a physical disability to offer them a break from their normal routine and an opportunity to make new friends and connections. Anybody can apply – whether you are working, retired, single or part of a couple. An easily accessible home is desirable but not essential.

You do not need to have any experience and you will receive training and on-going support. All applications will be subject to assessment, medical, Garda and reference checks.

An information evening will be held on the 31st July at 7.30 pm in the Stillorgan Park Hotel. If you are interested and want to make a difference, please call Verena Mähr, Cheshire Home Share Coordinator before the 26th July.

Phone: 087 2516962

Email: verena.maehr@cheshire.ie


Cheshire Ireland provides services to adults with a primary physical disability. Cheshire Ireland operates a range of services in 13 counties. The services include residential centres, respite services, and supports to people living in their own homes.


Home Sharing is a service that is offered by several organisations across the country. These organisations recruit ‘Hosts’ who welcome people with disabilities to stay in their home on a regular basis for short breaks, part time or full time accommodation. This offers the person with a disability a break from their normal routine and an opportunity to make new friends and connections.

Individuals, couples and families are recruited for this purpose and provide this service in their own home. Some organisations have provided this service successfully for many years and this has made a valuable difference to all people who are involved.

For general information on Home Sharing in Ireland visit the National Home-sharing and Short-breaks Network on http://www.nhsn.ie/index.html.


Cheshire Ireland has decided to run a pilot programme this year in Dublin to recruit a small number of ‘Hosts’ to offer regular breaks in their home. The ‘Hosts’, once trained and assessed will then be carefully matched with a person with a disability who already uses Cheshire Ireland’s services.

Cheshire Ireland will provide training and on-going support to ‘Hosts’ and all visits are arranged through Cheshire Ireland. ‘Hosts’ will receive a small allowance.


Welcoming people with disabilities to your home can make an incredible difference to you and your guest. It is a rewarding role that offers the person with a disability the opportunity to develop new relationships and to be part of a community.

Volunteer hosts include families, couples and individuals. Everybody can apply and no formal qualifications are required – just energy, flexibility and patience.

All hosts are fully checked out and approved. Hosts attend training to prepare them for supporting their guests.

Opening your home to people with disabilities on a regular basis for short periods can happen in many different ways: This can be everything from few hours a week, once a month, weekend visits, to longer holiday type breaks.


  • Attend information session that will explain the pilot programme further and outline the assessment and training process.
  • If you are interested, complete the application form.
  • We will then, with your permission seek three references, a medical reference, garda clearance and contact the Social Work Department in the HSE to establish whether and why they have been in contact with you.
  • An assessment will be completed during a number of visits to your home and will cover the following:
    • Personal profile
    • Personal history and experience
    • Current circumstances
    • Motivation and attitude towards Home Sharing
    • Expectation of Home Sharing
    • What the prospective ‘Hosts’ have to offer (in terms of experience, lifestyle, skills, strengths, availability and accommodation)
    • Safe care
    • Support needs
  • Subject to satisfactory references and statutory checks and subject to an Approval’s Panel’s agreement, you will be approved as a ‘Host’.
  • Matching and introduction will begin.

The initial set up phase can take time and usually it takes about 6 months from attending the information session to hosting someone.

As this is a pilot programme, a review will take place 6 months into the arrangement.


Verena Mähr
Social Worker
Cheshire Ireland
Block 4
Bracken Business Park
Bracken Road
Sandyford Industrial Estate
Dublin 18

Tel: 087 2516962

E-Mail: verena.maehr@cheshire.ie

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