Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Addiction Support Group Closes as It's 'Unviable'

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Addiction Support Group Closes as It's 'Unviable'

Article excerpt

Byline: Michael Marsh Reporter

AGROUP which helps drug and alcohol addicts across the North East has closed. The Creative Recovery project, led by former eating disorder sufferer Helen Morley, was only launched last October but has now become unviable, bosses said.

And its closure is a blow to the dozens of people in need it has helped in the past eight months.

Martha McBarron, committee chairman, said: "It was with considerable regret that the management committee took the decision to close the project, which had become unviable for a number of reasons.

"We all appreciate the hard work that Helen put into the set up and delivery of the project, initially based on the concept of combining a 12-step recovery programme with art workshops.

"There is no doubt that she has made a positive contribution to recovery activities in County Durham including provision of a stepup for the 50-plus addicts she worked with in the region.

"We know that Helen will find new opportunities and wish her all the best in her future contributions to the on-going work of helping those suffering from addiction."

Creative Recovery helped addicts across the region by combining traditional mental approaches with art. Based in Bishop Auckland, it operated an open-door policy to those with addictions of any sort.

The group was kick-started by a grant from the Russell Brand Give it Up fund, and relied on grants and private donations as well as help from Comic Relief and the Arts Council England, among others.

In a letter to users and supporters, Helen said: "I would like to express my gratitude to those that have shared their experience, strength and hope with me as I have tried to get this project under way in the last 18 months, and to the funders for their kindness, commitment and faith. I am sorry I am unable to realise it for you.

"I would like to say thank you to a few special people. I am especially grateful to the very kind and visionary couple that invited me up here in the first place, who have quietly supported me and this work with great grace and humility. …

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