New services launched to support users of alcohol and other drugs


April 11, 2018

Two young boys kissing their mother on cheek
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Uniting in Victoria and Tasmania will today launch two new alcohol and other drug (AOD) services to save lives and create safer environments for families across Victoria.

After securing $1.9 million in funding from the Victorian State Government, Uniting will deliver:

  • Treatment services for parents whose children are subject to a family reunification order; and
  • An overdose prevention program for people engaged with an existing treatment service

More support for families

Alcohol and other drug use is often only one of a complex range of factors affecting parents’ capacity to provide a safe and loving home for their children.

Laurence Alvis, Executive Officer of Uniting ReGen said,Parents with a history of AOD dependence who are trying to bring their family back together face some serious challenges. Many will have had to deal with issues such as social isolation, homelessness, mental health issues, family and domestic violence, childhood abuse and neglect and complex trauma”.

“The family reunification service will provide parents with intensive, wrap-around support to help them recover and strengthen their capacity to provide a safe environment for their children”.

Preventing overdose

The second program launched today will improve access to overdose preventions programs for Victorians with a high risk of opioid overdose.

“We know periods immediately following residential withdrawal and rehabilitation, or exit from prison, carry a high risk of opioid overdose.  The transition from residential treatment settings or prison, back to the community can be particularly challenging”, said Laurence Alvis.

“Our services will work with individuals and families during this transition to help them build their knowledge and increase their capacity to respond to opioid overdose.  We know from experience how important it is to train people to identify signs of overdose and administer naloxone to a friend or loved one. It saves lives”.

The new Uniting Alcohol and Other Drugs services announced today, will be delivered across the Wimmera, Ballarat, the Grampians, Gippsland and the North West regions of Melbourne as part of the Victorian government’s 2017-2018 State Budget Alcohol and Other Drugs Initiatives.

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