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Issue 18

Network Monthly news, views and updates from across Phoenix Voyage of Recovery 2013

This time last year we’d just finished the Voyage of Recovery 2012, sailing around the coastal waters of Britain. Throughout September and early October this year we took to the seas again for 5 week-long voyages leaving from, and returning to, Plymouth. Although the overall challenge was a different one this year the experiences of those that took part were just as life changing.

Re:Cover - And the winner is...

CoverUp, a rock band from Bridgend in Wales includes four musicians; Ryan, Daniel, Josh and James.

“We’ve all grown up in the same comprehensive school together which is great because that meant as a band we were already a close knit group.” says Daniel. “We already felt comfortable being in the practice room together and had no issues with correcting each other’s playing Read what this year’s voyagers had to if one of us wasn’t quite up to speed say about their experiences at http:// or playing the right parts. We started playing for fun with the idea of voyage-recovery-2013/ playing the kind of music we all grew up with including some contemporary covers as not many cover bands cater for that style of music”.

During October each solo artist, or group, was set up with a day in a recording studio to record their songs along with the help and support of an industry professional mentor. A huge thanks to everyone who supported, promoted and voted for their favourite Re:Cover finalist over the last two weeks.

When the voting closed on Friday we had received nearly 3,000 votes in total across all the finalists. The impressive number of votes, people who listened and supported the project was possible through the hard work and dedication of all 9 finalists, and their supporters, to share and The Re:Cover Music Project, offered communicate stories of addiction people with a passion and talent for and recovery through music. making music the opportunity to Look out for further updates communicate their experiences of about how CoverUp feel to have addiction.We received nearly 60 won and what’s happening with applications! We selected nine finalists who were given the chance the project next… coming soon to record two songs; one original and at one cover, both of which tell a story uk/recover/ or give an insight into addiction.

Recovery to Employment It had been identified that people suffering from Drug or Alcohol issues were not completing the normal work based programs setup by DWP and facilitated by A4e. This was having a negative effect on DWP figures but also the impact was felt by Treatment providers and also the clients who were put forward for the work based programs. Working in close partnership with DWP, A4e and Derby Substance Misuse Services (DSMS) a specific work based program was setup to take in to consideration the needs of Drug misusing clients, the daily problems and issues they face and their future employability. A condensed 12 week pilot program was setup with eight DSMS clients who were all interested in getting back to work, but additionally who were not under any other work based program or sanctions by DWP. To breakdown any barriers clients may have, the program was split between St Andrews House and A4e, with the first half at St Andrews and the second half at A4e. Support was given in relation to CV writing, confidence building, presentation and attitude. This was done in a group setting and also one to ones. Support and understanding was shown in relation to Child Care, Treatment needs, numeracy and literature skills and any presenting problems that may arise due to the nature of Substance Misuse. From the original eight clients that were on the program, three graduated with a certificate, out of the three who graduated, one person was offered two jobs (could not take due to family/ childcare problems), one person has taken up a work offer and the third person has now written a CV (this person had limited literacy skills). Warren Tranter Team Manager, Derby City

CHC Volunteer nominated for Youth Achievement Award

Sherina Akhatar, a Community Health Champion Volunteer with Birmingham Community Services, B-Chilled project was recently nominated for the Volunteer of the Year Award 2013.

others. The awards cermony took place at the Royal Suite Banqueting Palace in Aston, Birmingham and was attended by invited dignitaries, including leading business people, senior council and government officers, local councillers and a 21 year old Sherina, who has recently Member of Parliament. Though Sherina didn’t win the overall award, graduated from Birmingham City University with a 2nd in Psychology, she felt honoured to be nominated. was nominated in her category on the grounds that she has dedicated Through the volunteering Sherina is doing with B-Chilled she is not only her time and energy to regularly provided much needed harm helping others. Sherina started reduction and public health volunteering with the B-Chilled messages, but also going some way project in April 2013 and after to challenging the stigma often completing the class room based element of the training programme, attached to substance use within some communities. Sherina is has enagaged in a number of currently working towards community based events advising completing the NOCN quilification and disturbuting harm reduction ‘Working with Recreational Drug information. Use’ and should graduate in JanuThe Youth Achievement Awards have ary 2014. been set up by West Midlands based Community Foundation to recognise For further information on the Community Health Champions and celerbrate the achivements of B-Chilled project, please contcat young people in the community, as Marc Blanchette CHC Team Manger well as to encourge them to on 0121 212 1122 or marc.blancontinuously develop themselves further and insprie and motivate HMP Northumberland’s ‘Gateway to Recovery Wing’ celebrated its First Anniversary on October 22nd 2013. my time on the Gateway to Recovery The celebration was attended by a number of representatives Wing’. Clients also read poems they from community services along had written about their own personal experiences of addiction with the Deputy Governor of which were well received by the HMP Northumberland John Spedding, who played a pivotal audience. part, along with the Phoenix Speeches were given by the Deputy Futures Treatment Manager Governor, Treatment Manager Kelly Kelly Errington in taking the wing from its first stages to the Errington and the Locality Manager Sue Ford, all of which highlighted positive and inspirational the hard work the clients had done Recovery wing that it is today. throughout their time on the wing. The morning comprised of the The event was positive, motivational community giving presentations to the visitors on a number of subjects and uplifting, reminding all who ranging from ‘What Recovery means were present that Recovery is an to me’ to ‘What I have learnt during attainable goal for every individual.

Alcohol Awareness Week

Phoenix National Volunteer Conference 2013 An interactive day of learning and sharing

Please RSVP including any dietary requirements by email to

Thursday 28 November 2013 10am – 3.45pm

Gallery and Conference Suite The Circle 33 Rockingham Lane Sheffield S1 4FW

by Friday 22nd November.

During Alcohol Awareness Week this year ( 18th – 24th November), the team at the Wirral Community Service will be putting up stalls in a number of local supermarkets, giving advice and guidance to shoppers around alcohol consumption whilst also displaying and carrying around a 5ft glass shaped sign-up board letting members of the public know how they can sign up to ‘Dry January’. The team will also be attending

‘Being a Peer Supporter for the Building Futures Service, ‘mock’tail events and finishing HMP Pentonville’ off the week with the 5-a-side Written by a Peer Supporter at HMP Pentonville football tournament, co-organised Being a peer supporter has given me the chance to focus more on my recovery. It has made me look more closely at myself. In particular it has made me think more before I act especially thinking into the past and the future about the consequences of my actions.

It’s not until you sit down and do the paperwork with them that you realise how many people have a problem, on a daily basis, of drug and alcohol addiction. This for me is where the satisfaction of being a peer supporter comes from. It is about giving back and trying to help people to change and know A strategy which I have taken from the they can make a difference by Building Futures groups is the ‘stop, look being in recovery. and listen’ and ‘keep calm and think’ It has not been easy, but that is techniques. These have helped me the life. To get the results you have to most in my recovery. work and that’s exactly what I’ve Substance misuse has taken a lot away tried to do in my role as peer supporter. I have worked with from me, my family and the wider good people, peers and staff in community. It has caused a lot of loss the prison and for the Building and mistrust. I’m now beginning to Futures team. They have shown build on this from the work I have put me that support and care, which into myself as part of my role as peer comes from a good place, can supporter. As part of the role I have had a lot of opportunity to see inmates work. If you look closely at the staff you can see that there is young and old, from all different backgrounds and all walks of life. All of a smile on their face when they know you have progressed in your them have the same problem of recovery. addiction as myself and all need help.

by Phoenix where they expect to see an improvement on the semi-final placing from last year (the only team to have just the one member of staff and 4 service users in it). As well as this, on 20th November two Phoenix staff members will be doing the Reiki as they are both ‘2nd degree healers’ at the ‘Tomorrow’s Women Wirral’ Ladies Event.

Goodbye Goodbye yellows, Goodbye blues My life is what I choose

Intervention Worker at HMP Holloway Shortlisted for The Butler Trust Awards 2013

Goodbye Temazepam, even though I was your greatest fan Goodbye coke, crack and E’s Customs are on top shipping you overseas Goodbye rocky and weed, You make me paranoid and fuck up my heed Now to say goodbye to my old friend Subutex, I had to let you go or it would be the heroin next

Trindad and Cape Town). She The Butler Trust is an independent charity promoting explains how her own journey of drug addiction and prison excellence in UK prisons, You have all been a massive part of my probation and youth justice helps to inspire and motivate life but your price has been too high recognising individuals for their the women in HMP Holloway. If I carry on with you I will surely die ‘outstanding dedication, skill She states “they can see that change is possible especially as and creativity’. The awards Now I have chosen a different path were launched in 1985 and are I now work in the prison I used Time to start afresh one day at a time presented at an annual to be a prisoner in. Supporting Now the whole world is mine ceremony by HRH, The Princess women in drug addiction and recovery is something I live”. Royal. So cheerio, farewell and goodbye Her work is recognized across Mandy Ogunmokun an Interventions the prison and she was recently David Dunn Worker for Phoenix Futures has been asked by HMP Holloway senior Gateway to Recovery Unit shortlisted for an award; one of 38 management team to do a talk 2013 to the women as they felt she people from an original 260 nominations. Mandy was nominated was an inspiration to all the Gateway for her passion and commitment to women in Holloway. promote, support and inspire We all have different addictions, I’ve recovery to those living with On receiving this nomination chosen to say goodbye addiction. The good work she does Mandy stated “The nomination So listen to this poem, here’s the rea- extends from her role in HMP is an honour “. The next stage is son why… for the judging panel to review Holloway as she is continually all nominees so a final decision encouraging recovery in the Through many years of prison, community often sharing her story can be made. This nomination is Pain, hate and emotion a testament to Mandy’s work in at different events in the probaI’ve now channelled my addiction to tion and youth offending services, HMP Holloway and we wish her another devotion. schools and other prisons both in the all the best in the next stage. UK and abroad (including Jamaica, So goodbye to my addiction, you have taken your toll, Health & Safety Corner I now must concentrate to achieve my goal. As it’s me who suffers, you destroy all you touch. Your prerogative is destruction and I’ve had enough! So goodbye to addiction It’s open for all to see Hello to my Gateway To our Recovery! Michael Slater Gateway To Recovery 2013

In October, Phoenix Futures was judged as ‘CHAS’ compliant. ‘CHAS’ is the Contractors Health and Safety Scheme.

standards. CHAS compliance looks good on tenders and reinforces our organisational commitment to Health and Safety.

This is proof that our organisation meets certain Health and Safety

To find out more, you can visit:

The network 18  

News and views from around the organisation

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