Two Generations is an award-winning Community Interest Company (social enterprise) set up to tackle loneliness and support independent living among older communities. Set up 5 years ago by our founders, tech entrepreneur Sam Brandman and experienced Social Worker Natasha Langleben, we’re a leading member of national body Homeshare UK and currently a team of 16 people (50/50 staff & volunteers) supporting local communities nationwide.
We do this by providing a national Homeshare service which fosters friendship between generations. Using our award-winning platform technology, we match an older person (Householder) with a friendly, carefully vetted younger housemate (Sharer) for companionship, overnight presence and help with household chores. In return, the younger person benefits from affordable accommodation.
A ‘Homeshare’ brings together two people, often from different generations. It helps the Householder (typically elderly or disabled) to feel safe, gain companionship and retain independence. It helps the Sharer (typically mature students or key workers) with an affordable housing option, as the accommodation is far below average private rental price. Legally, homesharing is covered under the UK Government’s Tenant Fees Act 2019 and the Sharer is a lodger. As Homeshare is not a rental, it avoids any issues which might arise between Landlords and tenant. The Homeshare process looks like this:
Promoting Homeshare through our website, via partners and with local authorities and healthcare providers, we work with two audiences, Householders and Homesharers, with the emphasis on Householders - usually it’s not a challenge to encourage potential Homesharers to apply as the monthly support fee is much lower than the cost of rent.
To help cover our costs of marketing, matching and managing Homehares, support fees are paid by both Householder (usually £100 pcm, though a bursary scheme is available to help applicants who cannot pay the full fee) and Homesharer, usually £300 pcm. As a social enterprise, we invest the vast majority of our income into growing more and supporting our existing Homeshares.
As every Homeshare is unique, both the Householder and Sharer undergo an assessment, vetting and matching process. Following intros and a trial homeshare period, we then provide regular ongoing contact and support throughout the Homeshare.
Two Generations has set up over 70 Homeshares to date from Perth to Plymouth and we receive new applications every week. We work closely with several local councils to provide services on their behalf (eg. Harrow, Waltham Forest). We support healthcare providers including NASP and local ICBs by providing Homehare to help speed up hospital discharge and we partner with 3rd sector organisations eg. Age UK, Alzheimers Society who offer Homeshare services provided by us. All of our Homeshares help reduce the call on limited public sector resources, especially in the social care sector.
Alongside helping Householders, Homeshare provides big benefits to younger people facing a national housing crisis of limited private and social housing and ever-increasing rents. Alongside creating intergenerational friendships, Homeshare provides Sharers affordable accommodation locally, particularly helpful for local public and third sector organisations often challenged with the recruitment and retention of keyworkers.
Example Homesharers Sheila & Dela picture:
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