Skip to main content

Chif & Liz

Chif's Journey with Shared Lives in Buckinghamshire

Since 2010, Chif has been supported by his Shared Lives carer, Liz, in Buckinghamshire. Chif's story is a testament to the transformative power of community support, faith, and perseverance.

Community involvement & environmental stewardship

Chif has volunteered at Work Aid in Chesham for 20 years. This outreach program supports communities in Africa, and Chif is proud to contribute to its mission. To honour Chif's many years of service to WorkAid they named one of the containers that was sent to Zambia after Chif! He now also goes out with the driver, John on Thursdays to collect items. Chif does an excellent job in his role.

Chif's commitment to his community is evident in his various roles. At St Peter & St Paul Church, he is on the rota as a 'Holy Duster,' a task he performs with enthusiasm using his trusty Henry vacuum cleaner. His efforts extend to environmental stewardship as an eco-warrior, caring for the old, closed burial ground and participating in re-wilding projects around the church. One of his notable projects includes building a bug hotel, whimsically named "St Beetle and St Crawl," for the church.

Chif also helps at the local Baptist Church Pop-in lunch which is on alternate Wednesdays.

A life of service & faith

Chif is a dedicated server at St Peter & St Paul Church in Great Missenden, a role he cherishes deeply. His commitment extends to the local Baptist Church, where he assists with their mid-week service every Wednesday. This service alternates with a pop-in lunch which he also helps out at, allowing Chif to engage with and support his community regularly. He gets the tables and chairs out, lays the tables, and clears up afterwards. The people who run the Pop-in say they could not manage without him as he is very strong and they are all retired people. Chif knows exactly what to do, so does not need prompting, he just gets on with the tasks and has been helping for many many years. On the Wednesdays in between Chif helps at the Village, Holmer Green Sensory Garden.

Faith plays a central role in Chif’s life and the life he shares with his Shared Lives carer, Liz.  Despite being told he would never read, Chif has defied expectations. He now reads from a Dyslexic New Testament daily, selecting passages that resonate with him. His reading journey has even expanded to include Paddington Bear, a significant milestone that began during the Covid-19 pandemic when activities for those with specific learning disabilities were scarce.

Chif's daily routine includes a personal prayer session, a practice he initiated. He prays for friends and situations he cares about, offering solace and support through his faith. In challenging moments, Chif often says, “Can we pray?” reflecting his deep spiritual connection.

A legacy of support & love

Chif's journey is deeply rooted in his family's history. His father, a Buddhist, was supportive of Chif attending church services with his Shared Lives carer. This early acceptance laid the foundation for Chif’s enduring faith and community involvement.

Chif's story is a powerful example of how Shared Lives can support individuals with additional needs, enabling them to lead fulfilling lives. Chif and Liz's story also embodies how important, and powerful, the matching process is, it ensures that the carer and person supported will suit each other. The match is made, based not simply on support needs but also on shared values, beliefs and lifestyle, which means that the arrangement is fulfilling and enjoyable for both carer and the person supported. Chif's journey reminds us of the incredible impact of community, faith, and Shared Lives can have on an individual's life.

Could you be supported by Shared Lives?

If you’re over 18 and want to live in a family home, but need some help to live independently, then Shared Lives could be for you.

Find out more here

Chif with his hands in the air. Chif is supported through Shared Lives.

Chif is supported through Shared Lives.

Chif volunteers for WorkAid. Here he is with the container named after him.

Chif volunteers for WorkAid. Here he is with the container named after him.

Chif is a Server at St Peter & St Paul, Great Missenden.

Chif is a Server at St Peter & St Paul, Great Missenden.

Chif building an insect hotel for his local church

Chif building an insect hotel for his local church

Read more stories on our Ategi people page