Helping veterans with addiction

Addaction is launching a new programme called Right Turn to work with veterans who need support with an alcohol or drug dependency.
Man in the NHS standing behind a reception desk

Right Turn is funded by The Forces in Mind Trust, which was set up to help ex-service men and women make a successful transition back to civilian life.

Currently successfully working with veterans in the North of England and Scotland, the project will now be expanded to the North Somerset and Bournemouth services in the South West.

The project was implemented in direct response to the growing number of veterans misusing drugs and alcohol who were accessing Addaction’s services.  Through a specific programme of awareness-raising, education, treatment and peer support, Right Turn aims to reduce the use of drug and/or alcohol amongst veterans.

Right Turn will also support a detailed evaluation of the project and by capturing the true scope and scale of the problem, aims to influence policy makers and improve the way services are delivered to veterans right across the country.

Ray Lock, Chief Executive of the Forces in Mind Trust said:

“After military service, a small but significant number of people can face particularly difficult challenges that can lead them to turn to drink and drugs in order to cope with the stress of transitioning back into civilian life. It can be very difficult for such vulnerable people to have the confidence to speak up and ask for help; in some cases they may not even be aware that such help is available. Addaction’s Right Turn programme is the perfect way for people to gain the vital help and support that they need and it is right that Forces in Mind Trust supports the extension and evaluation of it.

By conducting an independent evaluation, we will provide the evidence-base that is needed to further support Service and ex-Service personnel to lead fulfilling civilian lives. We are proud to fund Addaction in this project and are optimistic that it will be a success.”

Simon Antrobus, Chief Executive of Addaction, said:

“Addaction’s work with Veterans in Sheffield has already shown the importance of providing specialist support for former members of the Armed Forces, many of whom are struggling to re-integrate into civilian life. We are very grateful to the Forces in Mind Trust for this grant, which will give us the opportunity to extend our work with Veterans across the country and to collect the evidence that will help develop better services for them in the future.”

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