THE charity Shelter is to launch a new service in Sheffield for local people needing help to recover from drug or alcohol problems to they can find or keep a home.
Commissioned by Sheffield City Council, the citywide Drug and Alcohol Prevention and Recovery Service will provide practical assistance and support to people with a current or previous history in misusing drugs and alcohol.
The aim is to help people to “engage in treatment services, build their recovery, live independently and sustain their home in the community”. The project will work across Sheffield with drug and alcohol treatment services and recovery groups.
“We’re delighted to bring 20 years of Shelter experience to this service working with Sheffield City Council to improve the lives of families across the city,” said Shelter hub manager, Tracey Nathan. “Our expertise in supporting people to access and keep accommodation and to get the help that they need will come to the fore.
“Our experience in Sheffield shows time and again that having a stable, safe home is key for everything else in life to work. Our aim is to support people into treatment and afterwards, so that they don’t lose their home.”
The charity will also offer paid traineeships to up to four local people who benefit from the Shelter service. It’s an approach the organisation has used in other parts of the country, with the aim of the trainees progressing to permanent employment.
“People with lived experienced of the issues are vital to the delivery of this service, as they understand the challenges of trying to overcome drug and alcohol misuse and live independent lives,” Nathan added. “They help us to bridge the gap between the families we support and the various services that exist to help them. It also means that every step of the way, our service is informed and shaped by the people it helps, which we know really boosts its chances of success.”
The service will also assist people in accessing training, education and employment and increase their independent living skills, Shelter explained. People set to benefit from the service may have complex support needs, such as mental and physical health problems, and may have experienced homelessness, domestic abuse or earlier trauma.
“Addictions can have serious impacts on people and their families,” said Councillor Chris Peace, the council’s cabinet member for health and social care. “We know that this can result in a spiral of serious problems including losing your job, home and relationships. It can also lead to deteriorating long-term health and increase the use of emergency services.
“In line with the vision we set out in July 2018 in the Sheffield Drug Strategy, we have commissioned this service to give support to people to help them to access specialist clinical services available to them and prevent the many problems that drug and alcohol misuse can cause.”