Quality of Life

Changing Our Lives is committed to disabled people and people with lived experience of mental health difficulties leading ‘ordinary lives’. We know from experience that when an individual has tailored support, the right home environment and good healthcare, they are able to be active and valued citizens in the community and have a good quality of life. Changing Our Lives defines Quality of Life as ‘the degree to which a person lives and enjoys an ordinary life, living in their own home, making their own choices about everyday life, having responsibilities, being part of their community, having friendships and relationships, having the opportunity of employment and other opportunities for personal development’.

Since 2002, when the organisation was founded, we have been working in coproduction with disabled people to develop their own Quality of Life standards. These are used to measure how services and supports unlock a life and an individual's potential.

The Quality of Life standards have been used in a range of ways:

  • embedded into commissioning processes to inspire and stimulate recovery-focused and person-centred approaches
  • used in practice development with professionals to challenge assumptions, shape thinking and stimulate cultural change in working practices
  • used in Quality of Life reviews to measure how services enable ordinary life outcomes for the people they support

Quality of Life Standards


In 2018 the Mental Health People’s Parliament developed their own set of standards based on the recovery model.