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2020 ANNUAL REVIEW

I've actually managed to break the chain of addiction, it's actually gone that far - Daryl* (name changed)

2020: Isolation to Connection

Addiction is known as the disease of isolation so as lockdown was implemented across the UK in March 2020, those we were supporting were thrown deeper into isolation with a higher risk of relapse. 

The Recovery team immediately adapted support to ensure regular connection and support was available. This included: starting a Facebook community group with daily updates, thought for the day and spiritual support; socially-distanced walks; recovery days; telephone support and launching The Recovery Course online for the first time.

The Faithworks Recovery project has given me the opportunity to get out the house. Its given me the opportunity to meet new people, new friends, a new lifestyle. It's helped me to regain my self-confidence, self-esteem.
Its indescribable actually. It's been massive for me. I've actually managed to break the chain of addiction, it's actually gone that far. It's given me a whole new lifestyle, self-belief, inner peace.

Daryl (name changed to protect identity) | Photo by Andrew Tovar on Unsplash

Isolation to Connection: Online

The Revive UK Recovery Community Facebook page was launched in March 2020 to provide daily encouragement throughout the lockdown. The online community has now grown to 696 followers.

The page included live testimonies, guest speakers, encouragement, music and useful links to uplift and assist people as they journey through recovery and lockdown.

Isolation to Connection: Daily Activities

The Recovery Walks began in April 2020 and have provided an opportunity for people to meet, walk and talk together. Regular activities and routine is a vital part in a person's recovery. So to be able to provide this has been invaluable when many activities and services came to an abrupt halt during lockdown. Connecting with others is key and the Faithworks' Recovery project is committed to providing consistent ways to do this.

The Recovery Day was launched in November 2020 providing a safe and supportive environment where guests are welcomed and encouraged to interact with other guests. We provide food, friendship and fun while supporting them on their recovery journey.

[Faithworks Recovery has] stopped me from taking crack cocaine. And made me a better person - George* (name changed)

Isolation to Connection: Support

The support we provide is varied to ensure there are plenty of ways to engage with others. The project has also evolved throughout the pandemic to ensure that those in recovery were able to forge new connections and maintain existing ones even when life was almost completely online.

One of the ways we responded to the pandemic was to partner with The Recovery Course to help to run the first national online recovery course. This enabled greater access to the course including signposting someone in the United States to the course! The launch of the first online course meant that over 400 people were able to attend the course - more than four times last year's attendees!

We also run a Recovery Support Group to provide a safe space for family and others affected by someone else's addiction or habits. These groups enable those attending to meet others in a similar situation and share in a confidential space about the challenges they face.

Summary

The pandemic of covid alongside the growing pandemic of addiction has made for a challenging past year for so many people in our community with a huge increase in the demand of people seeking help around addiction, destructive habits and compulsive behaviours.

However, with fast paced insight and a reactive flare that the staff team and volunteers embraced, we have jumped to the opportunity to bring HOPE in what could have been a very hopeless time. When so many things had stopped and people were forced into isolation, we did the opposite with the project and started new initiatives and gave opportunities for guests to meet in safe ways, so that the lifeline of connection was not lost.

The Recovery Team consists of Emma and Charlie and 14 volunteers who work hard supporting the running of the Recovery Course and the various forms of support. The volunteers have selflessly given their time and support to many, this has been a privilege to witness. We have seen that isolation doesn't need to be a barrier in being able to support people struggling with addiction, seeing walks, activities and invaluable support in full swing.

Our words can't express the gratitude we have for our volunteers and supporters who have been a lifeline to so many people and brought light in the darkness.

Emma Heath, Recovery Projects Manager & Charlie Street, Recovery Projects Assistant

It's [Faithworks Recovery is] giving me a purpose and giving me hope for the future - Sean* (name changed)
Thank you for helping us bring hope to those battling addictions throughout 2020! We would like to say a special thank you to The George Temperance Trust who have provided significant funding for our work.