The Way We Work

We feel that we work differently at CLI.  Our organisation is led, staffed and delivered by people with experience of the issues faced by the people we support. Our values run through everything we do and everything we seek to do.

People come first in all our work

Our service is led by those who benefit from it.  We aim to deliver services that people want in a way that is useful. This involves listening and being responsive.  We believe that supporting people in all areas of life will help to achieve their goals.

This is the same for our staff, our volunteers and the beneficiaries of our services.  So we work to create a working environment that promotes good mental health and allows people to flourish. That is the CLI way and leads our decision making.

“I’ve found CLI to be helpful because there’s always been a routine that’s been stuck to, I’ve always understood my progress with CLI. The only place I’m not in is a job, even though I’ve had employment in the past few months I am not working now. But it will come, and I’ll get there, whereas before the support I had no idea where to turn and what to do. I will still stay in touch and let Becky know how I get on in the future, I am due to have another baby soon, so I’ll keep her updated. Very few people understand me, I am not an easy person to understand and I’ve been thankful that CLI do.”

 – John, mentored by CLI in Manchester

People need connections – to other people and their communities. We believe in the power of relationships to build these connections

Our services are run within communities.  We believe that for sustained change people need to be able to connect into services and activities within their communities. Our experience has shown us that when someone feels socially excluded, they need help to connect to their community.

A one to one mentoring relationship works, coming alongside the individual to link into community resources together.  CLI group activities in the community complement mentoring, providing peer support, both through other group members and volunteers.

We value how all life experiences build strengths and capabilities and we believe in helping people achieve their potential through using these strengths and capabilities.

CLI was set up by Pete and Matt after their experiences of offending, substance misuse and mental ill health.  They have used their experiences to support others directly and this runs through the CLI approach.

CLI see opportunities where others see risk. We seek volunteers and staff with lived experience of offending, addiction, homelessness and mental ill health who want to support change in others.  We put time and energy into supporting these staff and volunteers to use this relevant experience and reach their full potential.

We work with everyone we support to identify the power of their own strengths and capabilities in making positive changes.

“I’ve come such a long way since coming to CLI and have nearly gone full circle, starting out as a  service user and with time I felt confident enough to complete training to become a group volunteer, then eventually moving on to mentoring which has given me a great sense of achievement in helping other people overcome their own barriers in life. I now believe that someone with lived experience can give back to society in a positive way, everyone has something to offer in this world. I can honestly say this is the best thing that I have done in my life in a long time.”

 – Jason, CLI, Bedford



Please contact us if you would like to work with us, either as a volunteer or a like minded