The Life Sharing Program also lends itself to enhancing integration in the community, self-esteem and the ability to become a valued member of a family.

How it Works?

The licensed Life Sharing Program homes are located in private residences, which are owned or rented by the host person/family. Each private residence has been approved by Family Services and the PA Office of Developmental Programs. Typically, no more than one individual lives with a host family/person.

There are a number of key elements to be identified in the establishment of a Life Sharing Home:

  • To focus on meeting an individual’s needs, the living arrangement must be individualized and flexible.
  • To promote stable, long-term relationships, which evolve out of a shared-living experience.
  • To establish mutual consent and freedom of choice to enter into such a relationship.
  • To promote relationships and activities, which are highly integrated with the local, everyday life of the community.
  • To increase access to valued social roles such as the making of friends, memberships in clubs, neighbors, etc.
  • To support and enhance the family and to draw upon the strength and stability of already existing family relationships.

Licensed Family Living Homes are limited to homes in which there are no more than two individuals living with mental retardation who are not family members or relatives the homeowners.

Meet David's Family

David (pictured above) has lived with Diana and Tom Stamford for many years. David enjoys sports of all kinds. He especially likes the Steelers, Pirates, and Penguins. He plays baseball in the Miracle League. David really loves ice cream and cheeseburgers. After returning home each day, he likes to change his clothes and drink a cup of coffee.

Life Sharing through family living means living with and sharing life experiences with supportive persons who form a caring household. Life Sharing is recognized as having both a close personal relationship and a place to live.

Life Sharing offers people with an intellectual disability, the opportunity to live with a family or person who will support his/her desires and needs for an everyday life.

“Having a place to go is Home…

Having someone to love is Family…

Having both is a Wonderful Life.”

David, Diana, and Tom are a family. David likes spending time together as a family going camping and cooking out in the summer months.