My Life, My Home, My Choice

Working locally to help people live how and where they want

Southwark Council and the NHS are trying to understand what is working well and what needs to be improved in the housing available for residents with mental health needs.  The way we want to do this is to start by finding out from people directly about their views and experience. We think that it is important to do this independently so we have asked Experts by Experience to talk to you and gather your views. Experts by Experience is an organisation made up of people with lived experience of mental health conditions who are promoting the involvement of people who use mental health and support services in the future planning of those services


People have told us that they want to be more in control of their lives, where and how they live and the care and support that they may need. We want to hear from you about what’s important so that we can work with you to develop housing and support that suits you.


We hope that there will be different sorts of housing made available locally that suit people better.

One way of people having more choice about how and where they live is to give them the option of having a personal health and social care budget. This is money to help people plan the things that will keep them healthy and safe and more in control of the things that matter most to them.

A personal health budget is money that you can choose to spend on some or all of the things that can help you stay well.  This can be used flexibly instead of having to use services provided to everyone that might not suit you.

Here are some examples of how personal budgets have been used

Things people have wanted to achieve with a personal budget How they did it
Improve confidence Went on a self confidence course
Lose weight Have a personal trainer and go to the gym
Feel less stressed Have an Indian head massage regularly
Help others Got a sat nav to give me confidence that I can find my way around enough to give my friends lifts in my car
Return to work Doing an IT course. Got a lap top.
Get on better with family Rail fare to visit my relatives.


What people say about it

‘At first I was really nervous about going to college and staff from the home came with me to settle me in, but now I get a taxi in the morning and a bus back. That was something I could never do before. The thought of a bus just freaked me out. Now every Wednesday I get a bus back.’

‘ My life is very settled. I can do what I want when I want. I now have some money. I am not bullied or patronised’


  • Will I have to move?

No this about you having more choice and control about where you live.

  • Do I have to have a personal health budget?

No you can continue to have the NHS services that you get already

  • Will you listen to what I say?

Yes your views and experience are very important to us

  • Where do I find out more?

You can speak to your care coordinator or the project manager Jane Williamson on 0207 525 1881

  • What happens to my views?

We will use your views to help improve things for you and other people living in residential care and to provide other living opportunities too.

PDF version here: Information sheet 2 05 14

For more information on this project, visit



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