Recovery · Peer Support · Community · Mental Health

Recovery focused packages of support, delivering person centred care holding our Values at the heart of everything we do.


Nottingham City Council Accredited CSE ProviderNottinghamshire County Council Accredited CSE ProviderWorking in Partnership with the NHS
Real Lives

  Real lives is a funded service and requires referral and setup before support can be provided.

Welcome to Real Lives

We are a not-for-profit social care company working across Nottingham City and Nottinghamshire County. We provide packages of support to clients with mental health and multiple needs which are funded through the local authority or the individual.

Please explore our website for more information on why we are unique, how you can be supported by us, and how to apply to work for us.

We also run Crocus Café a vegetarian community café which offer voluntary placements.

Why Choose Real Lives?

  • We have successfully been delivering social care packages since 2012
  • Our directors and management team bring decades of experience working in the mental health field
  • Our staff team includes qualified practitioners and exceptionally experienced support workers
  • We work with you to meet your individual goals with a person centred and friendly approach
  • You will get to know a set of specific workers including a member of our senior team
  • We are keen to liaise with other services to provide seamless and safe support
  • Everyone in the team holds our values at the heart of every session and contact
  • We have an incredibly low staff turnover
  • We aim to ensure we know of each client and employee of Real Lives individually
  • We have a beautiful café and central Hub where clients, workers and customers are welcomed

CALL OUR OFFICE ON: 07706 625 144

People We Have Supported

  • “[Real Lives support is] important to me. In being with Real Lives over the years I can say they are a good support team. I am happy with them. Never encountered any issues. Being helpful during the pandemic has benefitted me a lot and would have been very difficult without the phone support.”

  • “[Real Lives are] very supportive. [I am] still independent when supported [and] went out a lot more.”

  • “Having support workers has helped me in a lot of ways. It's different but it's been good.”

  • “Due to being so stressed/angry - towards myself - I feared I may need to change support worker but my PAL spoke to her manager and the situation was resolved. My PAL has been excellent on her approach to my sometimes changeable mental health. The support from Real Lives is like a loyal cheerleader.”

  • “The service I get I am happy with. I'm happy for you to come and it gives me a lot of confidence. I like my PAL coming because I can talk to her. We go out to the precinct together.”

  • “My PAL was a very big help to me. Keep up the good work, thank you, all marvelous. Very helpful all the time.”

  • “Real Lives have given me the courage to do daily activities and confidence in speaking up and talking and meeting people.”

  • “Since joining Real Lives I feel a lot better, I can do things I couldn’t do before. I have been going to college which was a goal of mine and my PAL has helped me to do this. I get along with my PAL as we have stuff in common. I think it’s a flexible service that works around my needs.”

  • “I have changed since being with this service. I am much happier. Having a PAL has motivated me to do things & get out the flat. Attending cooking group at Real Lives has helped me learn how to cook healthier food for myself, make friends and socialise. I attended a trip to galleries of justice, it was brilliant and educating.”

  • “My time at Real Lives has been nurturing & helped me with my recovery. The service has helped me achieve my goals especially getting out the house. Now I attend piano and ice skating lessons which helps with my self-esteem. Real Lives has helped me gain confidence in myself and relieve anxieties that are detrimental to my health.”

  • “All my PALs have been really nice, so have all the team. I feel better every day. I’ve done that much, I don’t believe it’. All my PALs give me strength, support me and cheer me up. I’ve stayed well for a long time thanks for Real Lives.”

  • “Real Lives got me out in the community and encouraged my hobby of cooking with fresh produce. Spending more time to cook healthier meals than buying fast food. Real Lives gave me a space to exhibit my art work and supported me in my practice.”

  • “Art group is really good, it brings out my creativity and helps me learn new skills. I get to know different people in a relaxed environment. We all have a laugh and get to do group projects which I like.”

  • “Real Lives have helped me so much in such a short time. They are a great team who make you feel welcome from day one of working with them. They have helped me and connected with me in a way that no previous support workers have been able to do and I am very grateful for this. I have improved so much in myself and gained a lot of confidence since working with the service, they're a brilliant team who go out of the way to help and support you :) ”

  • “Thank you for supporting me for 2 1/2 years knowing that you saw me at my worst when I really didn't believe in myself and I felt completely broken by everything that happened in my life and you saw me - you saw beyond that and I felt normal - more able - more worthwhile as a result. THANK YOU - you have had faith in me - that has been a big factor in helping me get to this point - and I will always be grateful to you.”

  • “After working with me intensely around getting my needs met and the proper assessments for my health and my care package, I want to say a big thank you for all your hard work and helping me get my voice heard.”

  • “From the outset of our work together my PAL has been skilled in striking the balance of being professional and clearly managing my expectations without falsely raising my hopes, whilst also being a warm and resourceful person who repeatedly inspires confidence and motivates me to achieve goals that I thought were beyond my reach.”

  • “I feel that my PAL has shown, empathy, care, concern, interest, humour, warmth and support during our working relationship. These are qualities that I now expect from all of my future relationships, which is something that I never expected to arise from our work together.”

  • “I find my PAL very motivating, useful with forms, phone calls and appointments. Very useful when it comes to supporting me to manage my medication. It's motivating to have PALs who are interested in the same things as me and so enthusiastic. I do cook for myself but I make more effort because we're sharing, I usually wouldn’t have anyone to eat with which reduced my motivation to cook and eat. I almost certainly wouldn't cook the variety of recipes I do now. I feel inspired. When I left hospital, I'd leave vital ingredients out and found recipes hard to follow but I've used cooking to help me try to recover some of my concentration and comprehension with the help of my PALs.”

  • “My experience with Real Lives has been extremely positive. I've always had good support with all the PALs, they're very motivating. I've worked with a variety of PALs and they've all been excellent, they give excellent care and I can really rely on them. I got quite unwell last year and my PALs were absolutely fantastic. One of them took me to hospital to get me assessed, even though it wasn't her working day/time. She stayed at the hospital with me until my partner came. My PALs visited me at hospital and were brilliant and positive. They made it an easy transition coming out of hospital. I enjoy going for walks with my PALs. I feel lucky with my PALs, they're all easy to talk to and are compassionate. We go to the gym, shopping, things I wouldn't do on my own. My PALs have never refused to do anything I've wanted to do. Real Lives are a fantastic company, a real positive experience.”
  • “I am so grateful to Real Lives for supporting me to get rehoused after a lengthy and unpleasant eviction process. I would not be here if it wasn’t for them helping me through every step of the way, and I do not say that lightly. My new home is so much better for me physically and mentally and its really turned my life around, it is also closer to Crocus Café which is an important part of my community. It really is beyond my wildest dreams and I want to say a massive thank you to all at real lives.”

  • “I really enjoy working for Real Lives and feel valued as a PAL. Wellbeing is at the centre of the organisation, both for service users and PALs. Care is taken to find good matches between service users and PALs, so positive relationships can build and develop. I look forward to going to work, I enjoy the variety, no two days are the same and I feel it is rewarding and worthwhile, making a real difference to people's quality of life.”

  • “I have been working with my PAL for 2 years now. My PAL is extremely approachable and always open to what we do together and what would be useful, which varies as I have a changeable mood. She also gently encourages me to get out or complete tasks I would usually avoid if I was on my own or without support. She is patent, friendly and warm and I'm lucky to be supported by her.”

  • “Thank you. I don’t think you realise how much you do help me in my recovery journey, and help me keep hope for the future.”

  • “You’re very kind and professional, you’re good.”

refer cafe jobs team contact