Thurrock Wize-Up lauded for its work with young drug addicts

A SUPPORT service for young people affected by substance misuse has been recognised for its achievements.

Wize-Up helps children, young people and families that are affected by the misuse of drugs and alcohol. This includes young people who are using addictive substances, or who are living in a household where drug and alcohol misuse is taking place.

Staffed by a dedicated and experienced two person team, Wize-Up has been run by health and social care charity CRI since April 2014. During an awards presentation at the charity’s national conference last week, the team topped the ‘Small is Beautiful’ category which recognises small services run by the charity that have achieved good results.

Wize-Up was distinguished by the impressive increase in the numbers of young people helped by the service in less than two years. At one point during this year, the service was supporting 74 young people who were experiencing problems relating to the abuse of addictive substances, an increase of 200 per cent on the 24 young people being helped by the service in 2014.

Three quarters (76%) of young people who turn to Wize-Up for advice, information and support for substance misuse report a positive outcome after being helped by the service, either through a reduction in the use of substances, or a greater understanding of how family members can be helped with drug and alcohol misuse.

Beverley Ball, Service Manager, Thurrock Wize-Up says:

“We have seen first-hand the devastating impact that drug and alcohol misuse can have on young people, and how effective support and intervention can be in turning lives around. Whether a young person needs confidential information and advice, or would benefit from one to one sessions, we have worked tirelessly to achieve the best possible outcomes for the people we see. We are delighted this has been recognised.”

Cllr Bukky Okunade, Thurrock Council’s portfolio holder for children’s services, says:

“I should like to congratulate Thurrock Wize-Up on their award. The small team has punched above its weight and made a real difference to the lives of many of those it has helped. Thurrock Council is committed to tackling drug and alcohol misuse and we are pleased that this partnership is delivering results.”

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