Hosts and people who have received support through the supported lodgings scheme describe their experiences.

Care leaver 1 – female young person aged 18 years 

‘I’ve grown so much more as a young adult. I haven’t been as happy and positive in my life since being here. I think supported lodgings are extremely beneficial to young people, especially with the right support surrounding you.’ 

Care leaver 2 – female young person aged 18 years

‘My experience with supported lodgings has been the most memorable opportunity I have ever been given. To live in a household where not only you feel you’ve been given a second chance, but to feel the support from others is warming to say the least. During the year I had been involved with lodging, I was always reminded in little ways that this is a meaning for a fresh start. I detached myself from problems I once had and began making new memories. This whole experience helped me gain plenty of independence, yet I still had backup that I needed. It is extremely rewarding for both young person and the host. For me, it was great because I got to feel myself become more confident, committed and happy. What did I learn, as a whole probably independence but in a different way – I learnt how to talk and present myself in a mature manner, I can confidently take phone calls and ride public transport with no worries. Less importantly I can now cook!

As a host YOU can help someone else, to help themselves. You can watch them grow into the person you know they can be. It all starts with the small gesture of sparing a room, and this is a gesture I will always be thankful for.‘ 

Supported lodgings host 1 – single male who works full time

‘Over the years I have supported young people who have been in foster care and / or supported lodgings, and have witnessed first-hand how consistent care and support leads them to a better future. As a supported lodgings host, I am able to offer a structured, consistent and stable home. Overall my experience of being a host has been positive. The young person I support has a good level of independent living skills and these have improved with continued support. Yes there are challenges, however, the positives outweigh this.

Being a host does include some extra responsibility, however, I’m still able to continue with my day to day life. I’m able to balance work, social life and further developments along with being a supported lodgings host. Wrexham Council has a Supported Lodgings Coordinator who offers support to hosts and helps access services for both the young person and the provider. Hosts are well matched with young people by the supported lodgings team, and they act as a bridge between the host, young person and the leaving care team. I’ve never needed to contact the Emergency duty team for urgent support, but am aware that someone is available 24/7 to provide support should I need it.

Young people who access supported lodgings have often have experienced inconsistency in their lives – as a supported lodgings provider you can provide that consistency and security.

Becoming a host for Wrexham Council means I can give something back to the community and secure a future for some of our young people. As a host, my advice is – if you have a stable home, a spare room and feel you can support people to become confident and independent, please contact the Supported Lodgings Service – they will be able to provide you with all of the information you need, if you would also like to speak to a host directly, that can be arranged’.

Supported lodgings host 2 – mum who has a 6 year old child and works full time

Supported lodgings host experience video text transcript

Hi, I'm Leah. I have been a supported lodgings host for about the past 9 months, I became a supported lodgings host by accident really. I had heard somebody give a talk about foster caring, decided to explore that and once I’d  gone onto the council website ended up reading about supported lodgings. And when I weighed them up side by side I thought actually supported lodgings might be a better fit for our family. So I got in touch with somebody from the council, expressed an interest and we’ve had somebody, a young person, living with us since last summer.

My experience of supported lodgings has been really positive, it's been brilliant to have a young person living with us and to help them as they become an adult, to sort of walk with them through learning some new skills, teach them some independent living skills, just be in their company, learn more about them. It's been a really good experience.

I also have a six year old who has loved the experience as well, she’s loved getting to know the young person, she loves spending time with them, she loves learning from them, being around them. So for us, it's been a really good experience.

There are challenges with supported lodgings of course, I mean there are emotions that we have had to navigate as a family and with the young person as different things come up. We've had to help them make good choices, we've had to help them form relationships and learn some new skills and all of that has at times been challenging, but it’s been worth it.

And if I could say to anybody who’s thinking about doing supported lodgings, if you could open your home, if you could give a young person, a teenager or somebody leaving care, a safe place that they could be where they could learn how to be independent, where they could prepare to go out into the world, then I would absolutely say do it, because it's just been fantastic for us.