Shaping Our Lives National User Network is an independent user-controlled organisation, think tank and network. We started as a research and development project but became an independent organisation in 2002. We work with a wide and diverse range of service users. We do not discriminate on the basis of race and ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, age or religious belief. Here are some of the people we work with:

  • people with physical and/or sensory impairments
  • people with learning difficulties
  • users and survivors of mental health services
  • young people with experience of being ‘looked after’
  • people living with HIV/AIDS
  • people with life limiting illnesses
  • older people
  • people with experience of alcohol and drug services
  • homeless people

Our postal address is: BM BOX 4845, LONDON, WCIN 3XX

Public involvement in research

Shaping Our Lives has been involved in a number of research reports and projects working with service users and carers.

This is a small example there are many more on our website:

Beyond the Usual Suspects:

  •  The focus of this report is making it possible for everyone who wants to, to be more involved in and have more say over their lives and the services they use to live them.

User-driven commissioning

  •  This report sets out the background to and learning from an informal national programme on user-driven commissioning

Caring for our future: what service users say

  •  This paper presents the views of service users on current adult social care and their fears for the future of the service

The Standards We Expect

  • Person Centred Support- a guide for service users
  • The Standards We Expect- Choices for End of Life Care

Relationship Matters: Building our knowledge and networks (2009)

  •  Working Towards Person-Centred Support: a local case study

In autumn 2008 Shaping Our Lives supported five service user and/ or disabled people’s organisations to hold networking events for service user led organisations in their own regions.


We work nationally within England Scotland and Wales. We are also working on a European funded project looking at service user involvement in social work education.

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