real lives

About Us

About Us

Real Lives has been providing recovery focused support to the citizens of Nottingham through personal budgets since September 2012 when the company was set up and originally funded by Co-Directors Sue and Nicole. Personal budgets are funding that people can be assessed for by a social worker to explore how their difficulties affect their life. The aim is to allow them to have the choice over how they meet their goals in living as independently as possible.

A case study on Real Lives and the support provided was published in the Mental Health and Social Inclusion Journal in 2015: Real lives: promoting recovery through personalisation and peer support

Click here to read more about our core values and beliefs.

Who we work with

Although a lot of our expertise lies within mental health, our recovery focused values can benefit anyone and we have staff with experience working with lots of different people and situations.

We also know that mental health is a continuum and something that everyone experiences and this is something we encourage all our workers to draw from when working with clients to empathise and work alongside them.

The role of our PALs

Our peers and allies for living or ‘PALs’ will deliver your support package. They will draw on their skills and experience to work with you in a way that is helpful for you. We feel that everyone has experiences of poor health, emotional distress, or challenging periods of life. Equally everyone has interests, goals, life skills and positive experiences and these can all be used to inspire hope and create robust and creative working relationships.

Not for Profit

Real Lives Directors’ do not take a wage from the business and any profit we make will be re-invested in our clients, workforce, the community and the services we offer.

Crocus Café

One way we support the community is by running a community café that also acts as a safe space and provides support, work placements, suspended meals, food parcels and affordable events and vegetarian and vegan meals.


home refer cafe pal contact