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Pilot scheme launched to match older people who need help with people who need homes

The scheme will run until Halloween.

Image: Shutterstock/ALPA PROD

ALONE, THE CHARITY that supports older people at home has announced a pilot scheme that will match people in need of help with people in need of homes.

Alone will partner with THE HomeShare to create a scheme that will see older people who need companionship and some practical help to live independently at home with people who need accommodation.

The scheme will run until Halloween and aims to “assist an ageing population to remain in their own homes, with suitable supports, while also offering affordable accommodation for younger people at a time of record housing shortages”.

The pilot initiative comes just weeks after an Alone report on housing for older people estimated a demand for homesharing to have reached 1,000 places nationwide.

Homesharing involves two unrelated people sharing a home for mutual benefit. Typically, an older householder with a spare room will be carefully matched with a younger homesharer, who has successfully completed a comprehensive approval process. In exchange for low cost accommodation, homesharers will provide an agreed level of support. This may include help with daily tasks such as cleaning, shopping, gardening, overnight security and companionship.

Seán Moynihan, CEO of ALONE, said:

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“ALONE hopes to greatly increase awareness of THE HomeShare service with older people, their families and service providers in the community. This initiative offers huge potential to help older people, who may be struggling with loneliness or household tasks, and young professionals who are facing increasing high rents.”

“Homesharing is not a replacement for carers or housekeepers, but it can make a meaningful difference for the well-being of older people living alone. Companionship and peace of mind, knowing that they’re not alone in their home, can really help to maintain an older person’s independence.”

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