Substance Misuse and Harm Reduction

Empowering people to change their lives

We operate a leading Residential Alcohol Rehab and Detox Service, Harm Reduction Crisis Service. We are proud to be part of the Forward Leeds Drug and Alcohol Service.

  • Our Service: Drugs and Alcohol Misuse
  • Our Service: Harm Reduction
  • Case Studies
  • Our Quality (CQC Ratings)

    Our Drug and Alcohol Services

    We have 20 services in which we support individuals with drug and alcohol misuse issues, and have four dedicated to the treatment of alcohol and drug abuse.

    Many of our staff have worked in drug and alcohol services for over 15 years, providing drug, alcohol and harm reduction support which are managed and supported by senior workers with qualifications in addictions studies, community studies and mental health.

    We have essential skills and knowledge from our experience to safely support those with drugs and alcohol misuse includes:

    • Safer injecting
    • Harm reduction
    • Reducing risk-taking behaviour
    • Prevention and early intervention methods
    • Alcohol and drug pathways
    • Multi-agency and partnership approach with specialist


    Understanding of Treatment

    Our staff have extensive experience in engaging with health professionals to ensure that the right treatment is provided to clients with complex needs when they need it, such as:

    • Advocating on behalf of clients when required to ensure that professionals such as GPs understand the client’s current situation and required treatment.
    • Engaging with formal treatment programmes e.g. for substance misuse, St Anne’s also currently run services which provide alcohol and drug detoxification and rehabilitation.
    • Taking a coproduction approach with clients/family/carers to support them to make informed choices about their treatment

    Applying early identification and interventions to reduce the level of complications of illness and associated stress and anxiety of treatment/hospital admissions, building health, wellbeing, and resilience, and providing appropriate advocacy are key to our approach

    Harm Reduction Service

    We have staff that work within a harm reduction team as part of the Forward Leeds Service, providing a supportive outreach service for people with severe mental health and complex needs.

    Our team have extensive experience in engaging with people that often re-present and/or are reluctant to engage with mainstream treatment services, support is provided at an enhanced level to prevent relapse and enable people to better their symptoms in their own home, leading to a reduction in hospital admissions. Our experienced staff are patient yet persistent, and do not give up on people no matter what.

    Our Harm Reduction staff also work alongside Crisis Assessment Services, Acute Liaison Psychiatry and Community Drug and Alcohol Treatment services. They work to specifically address the issue of repeat presentations to crisis services, whom symptoms are exacerbated by substance and/or alcohol misuse issues.


    Our Service: Harm Reduction

    Case Study

    S had a history of over 5 years of alcohol misuse and dependence prior to her first treatment with the detox team at Kirkgate. She was living with her partner (non drinker, non drug user and their 3 years old daughter).

    S was working full time but she reported that her drinking was gradually increasing so she noted she started having family problems, particularly with her partner and her mother. In addition, she also started having problems at work, absenteeism due to alcohol withdrawal symptoms.

    We discussed treatment options and S successfully completed community detox followed by relapse prevention medication based on Acamprosate. However despite referral to sustained recovery, S failed to engage with this programme. S was finally discharged alcohol free in Nov. 2019.

    S restarted treatment again in July 2020. At this point, she reported to be abstinent for the next 5 months after previous discharge. S was very disappointed and angry as she has had a full relapse for the last 3 months prior to this new treatment episode. She stated this was mainly as a result of Covid 19 lockdown and family and social stressors.


    We supported S through discussions on treatment options, advising S not to view this as a failure but to make reflections about what if any, she could identified and make positive changes this time. S engaged and responded well to treatment based on Motivational Interviewing ( MI ), Social behavioural and network therapy ( SBNT) as her mother and partner agreed to attend sessions and Relapse Prevention Therapy.

    S later successfully completed community detox in early August 2020. S agreed that part of her relapse was due to feeling overconfidence and not taking part in long term sustained recovery support. ( more important perhaps than Acamprosate prescription on it’s own).

    S was finally discharged alcohol free in late September 2020. We agreed a robust after care plan in order to minimise the risks of relapse. This included long term sustained recovery and family support as well as mutual aid support.

    By the time of her discharge, S reported to feel very motivated , She also reported that her health and family life had substantially improved. Fully supported by her partner and her mother, since she had stopped drinking. S reported to be back to full time work and hoping to maintain her treatment goal which was long term abstinence.

    We are very proud of S.

    Our Quality

    We are proud to deliver a quality service, please see below for our CQC ratings:

    Our Quality (CQC Ratings)
Forward Leeds

Forward Leeds

Forward Leeds supports adults and young people to make healthy choices about alcohol and drugs.  We reduce risk-taking behaviours through dedicated prevention, early intervention and tailored programmes. Our ultimate goal is to support people to achieve and sustain recovery.

Forward Leeds is Britain’s second biggest multi-agency project to tackle alcohol and drug problems.

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