This case study describes a quantitative, participatory, realist evaluation of a psychosocial rehabilitation program for individuals with severe mental illness. The purpose of the study was to refine an existing realist theory of a psychosocial rehabilitation program by examining mechanisms of change and recovery outcomes quantitatively. In the context of a master's thesis, this project involved balancing the demands of rigor necessary to complete research within an academic setting, with feasibility when collaborating with a community organization. To balance these two demands, the current case study describes a participatory approach to research, where members of a psychosocial rehabilitation program, a clubhouse called Progress Place, participated in all aspects of the research design, recruitment, data collection, and dissemination. Methods were chosen by the principal investigator to attain rigor, and were discussed with a research team consisting of clubhouse staff and members to ensure feasibility. Progress Place promotes the involvement of its members in all levels of the organization, and allowing members to participate in the research process was congruent with the values of the organization. Although the collaborative approach may have taken more time than traditional research approaches, the involvement with the organization proved to be beneficial. The participatory approach allowed for a response rate of 168 members, representing 21% of the entire Progress Place population. The results illustrated that the clubhouse model of psychosocial rehabilitation is one that initiates recovery for members and provides evidence that there are many mechanisms involved in recovery from severe mental illness. The case study provides evidence that evaluation work can be completed within an academic context if a collaborative balance exists between rigor and feasibility of the project.