Our values guide all of us at Changing Our Lives, as they shape the culture of the organisation, the way we behave and the way we work to challenge social injustice and develop solutions based on equality and an improved quality of life. These are the values of Changing Our Lives:
All people should be seen as people first. We should not be seen simply in relation to disability or a mental health difficulty. These things should not be used to define us as a person, segregate us or remove us from society, or limit us in any way.
We are all inter-dependent; we all need support in our lives. No one is too disabled or too affected by mental health difficulties to lead an independent life.
All people are citizens in their own right and have the same human, legal and civil rights as other members of society.
All of our work is rooted in coproduction with disabled people and people with lived experience of mental health difficulties. Coproduction is a philosophy, so what it looks like should seldom be the same. It is not about process, it is about people and a belief system that supports improved outcomes for people. It is a power shift that sees disabled people and people with lived experience of mental health difficulties as equal and reciprocal partners, having the skills and knowledge to create opportunities and solve problems.
All disabled people, even those individuals who do not use words, communicate and have a right to be heard and supported in their individual communication needs.
As a team and an organisation, we are brave in the work we do. We know that changing cultures, attitudes and behaviour takes time and patience but must be met with determination and a will to succeed.