Drugs and alcohol case studies

Recovery Partnership – Volunteer Case Studies


Recovery Champion - Lee

“After battling alcohol addiction for 34 years, visiting rehab twice and going through periods of homelessness, I have been alcohol free for 5 years.

The difference to my life that recovery has made is immeasurable.To start with I was nervous to attend group sessions, but I pushed through this and gradually built up trust and self-esteem. I never looked back.

Following the end of my formal treatment, I was asked if I’d like to become a Recovery Champion.  Throughout my training, I have greatly enjoyed being there for people who have been through the same thing that I have been through. I have never felt out of my depth within this role, and I have been guided to develop at a pace that has been right for me.

I believe that clients should get the best of both worlds in their recovery. The professional intervention, as well as the practical support and guidance in integrating back into normal life. A combination of the two makes for a perfect balance of treatment. A volunteer is living visual proof that there is life after alcohol or drugs, or both, and that these difficulties can be overcome.

My role as a volunteer is wide and varied and includes: assisting with group work, working on needle exchange, mentoring and accompanying staff on home visits amongst other things. I am also working towards an NVQ Level 3 in Substance Misuse.”



Female Recovery Champion - Marie

“After living with drug addiction, I have been under the care of The Recovery Partnership for 15 years.  I have been completely drug free now for 6 years.

Through recovery I have reconnected with family and friends and life feels good again.  I think it is very important for service users to have support from volunteers, as we have been there ourselves and understand completely what they are going through and how they are feeling.

Therefore, I decided to give back and show the clients there is light at the end of the tunnel by becoming a volunteer for Recovery Partnership 2 years ago. Hopefully I can inspire others.

My role as a volunteer is mainly facilitating group work, answering calls and clinical help like collecting samples and working in needle exchange. Through my role, my confidence has greatly improved and I really enjoy giving back to Recovery Partnership as I feel I owe them so much.

I love my work with The Recovery Partnership, and I am also working towards an NVQ Level 3 in Substance Misuse.”


ESH Works – Volunteer Case Studies


Female ESH Works Volunteer - Loraine

Loraine struggled for a number of years with alcohol addiction within a turbulent home environment. Following severe depression, Loraine became aware of the effects of alcohol on her mental health. After a relapse following her first detox, Loraine’s life was saved by a passer-by. She felt a second chance was given to her, so she returned to the Recovery Partnership and came to ESH Works as a mentoring client. During her mentoring placement, she made great progress, grew hugely in confidence and made the decision to return to education. She has spent the last 3 years studying towards a Degree in Counselling. She has also been mentoring at ESH for around 18 months and is now working with victims of rape and sexual abuse, offering support and advice. As well as currently working with a number of charities and writing a book about her life, she has also participated in many challenging events, including running a half marathon in Budapest.



Male ESH Works Volunteer - Lee

Now 2 years drug-free, Lee had previously lived over 40 years being a ‘career’ drug user. Lee tried various rehab interventions, but never managed to remain drug-free long term. Concerns around his health motivated him to make the change. ESH Works mentored Lee as soon as he came out of detox and began to witness a significant and positive change. Lee is now trained as a mentor and volunteer at ESH, where he enjoys working to support others. He is also a Recovery Champion and volunteer at the Recovery Partnership. His work involves many voluntary activities, including facilitating group work and mentoring service users. Lee has also signed up with a world charity and in November this year, he is travelling to India to undertake voluntary placements, including working with deprived children in Mumbai and teaching English to a school in the Himalayas.