National addiction charity launches new homeless outreach programme in Northamptonshire

The programme will provide specialist care for rough sleepers struggling with alcohol and drug addiction

By Carly Odell
Tuesday, 20th April 2021, 4:26 pm
Updated Tuesday, 20th April 2021, 4:30 pm

A national charity which helps people beat addiction has launched a new homeless outreach programme in Northamptonshire

Change Grow Live is a health and social care charity and one the UK’s largest providers of drug and alcohol treatment services.

As part of a new campaign, the charity has announced 18 outreach programmes across England to support rough sleepers struggling with drug and alcohol addiction.

The new provision hopes to help rough sleepers with addiction problems. (File picture).

Specialist teams across Northamptonshire will deliver on-the-spot street-based interventions, meaning that people living on the streets will be able to access professional clinical support quickly and effectively, without the need to wait for referrals.

Teams on the ground will include prison link workers, complex needs navigators, assertive outreach nurses, clinical psychologists, homeless recovery workers and homeless rehab workers.

Lesley Howard, homelessness lead at Change Grow Live, said: “The opening of 18 new specialist outreach services across England is a landmark moment.

“Each service will help us to provide effective, evidence-based support for people struggling with homelessness and substance misuse.

“130 new specialist staff working proactively across England will increase the visibility of substance misuse services and make it easier for individuals sleeping rough to access wrap-around support.

“Our outreach teams are trained to engage and build relationships with people with multiple, complex needs, to increase levels of engagement with vital treatment and enable people to get the help they need to rebuild their lives off the streets.”

Tony Lee, a lived experience volunteer at Change Grow Live added: “As a person who was homeless for 12 years in London, I can also say that the impact an approach like this will have will be life changing.

“Homeless people will be engaged in their own environment and not asked to come into an office or building.

“Just this alone will increase the engagement tremendously and better engagement means better outcomes.

“It’s one of the most exciting and innovative programs I have been involved with and feel really privileged to be a part of it.”

The launch of the new services has been made possible by funding from the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government, supported by Public Health England as part of a two-year programme of funding aimed at rough sleepers with drug and alcohol dependency.

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