Library of Lived Experiences

Library of Lived Experiences

Library of Lived Experiences

Over the course of the Voices4Choices project, CAIL have been collecting stories from all over Cambridgeshire.  We have gathered these stories together to be used as a resource for anybody to look at.

There are two purposes behind this idea. Firstly, this is for people new to or thinking about applying for Direct Payments to gain a personal insight into the highlights, benefits, unexpected outcomes, pitfalls and frustrations.

Secondly, this is a resource for professionals, academics and researchers to learn from first hand personal experience what is working well for people using Direct Payments, what is not working so well and what can be done better.

The stories have been edited to protect the anonymity of everyone who shared their story with us.  Individual’s names have been changed and other personal facts such as dates, addresses and contact information has either been changed or omitted.  There have been other small edits to fix basic grammar or sentence structure issues to improve readability.

Other than this, the words in the stories below are entirely those of the people sharing their personal experiences of using Direct Payments.


The stories here have been broken up into four Sections:

  1. Someone managing Direct Payments for a child.
  2. Someone managing Direct Payments for an adult.
  3. Someone managing Direct Payments for themselves.
  4. Professionals’ experiences with Direct Payments

Library of Lived Experience:

Disclaimer: The views expressed in these stories do not necessarily represent the views of CAIL or its staff.

Section 1: – Someone managing Direct Payments for a child:

Section 2: Someone managing Direct Payments for an adult:

Section 3: Someone managing Direct Payments for themselves:

Section 4: Professionals’ experiences with Direct Payments: