A WEEKLY outreach service in Melksham is offering support to residents wanting to make positive changes in their drug or alcohol use.
IMPACT Swindon & Wiltshire Active Recovery Service is a free drug and alcohol service run by national charity Turning Point, commissioned by Wiltshire Council to support over 18s.
Every Wednesday, from 1pm to 3pm, a team of engagement and prevention workers – identifiable by their bright orange backpacks – visit the town to offering ongoing support to vulnerable members of the community; and talk to members of the public, offering advice and information.
They also offer blood borne virus tests – a test that collects a small drop of blood from a person’s finger to test for HIV and hepatitis.
Engagement and prevention worker, Charlotte Davies, explains, “Our role is to offer support and practical solutions to those who may experience barriers to treatment, whether that be transport difficulties, mobility issues, financial restrictions, anxieties, or simply not knowing who we are and what support we offer.
“We have been doing regular assertive outreach sessions in Melksham and working closely with a local housing project for some time now, you may have seen our engagement and prevention workers in and around the town centre wearing their orange backpacks and red Turning Point lanyards.
“As well as supporting some of the more vulnerable members of the community, we engage with the general public offering advice and information that is relevant to them. So, if you have a friend or family member that you are concerned may be using alcohol or drugs in a harmful way you can approach any of our outreach worker for some factual and helpful information.
“In addition, the engagement and prevention team aim to prevent people causing more harm to themselves through their substance use. We do this in a variety of ways, mainly, education, assertive outreach, proactive harm reduction interventions, and public awareness, such as supporting and promoting public campaigns (like dry January), having a presence at community events and festivals to raise awareness of our service and some of the harms caused by misusing substances, and how small changes can have a really positive impact on one’s wellbeing.
“We offer online drug and alcohol awareness workshops for professionals & members of the public free of charge monthly. We offer free naloxone training and regular refresher courses (naloxone is a bit like an epi pen that can reverse the effect of an opiate or heroin overdose and save a life).”
As well as their outreach services, IMPACT Swindon & Wiltshire Active Recovery, also offers person centred treatment to support Wiltshire residents in making positive changes in their drug or alcohol use through a mix of residential, face-to-face, online & phone interventions.
To find out more about the IMPACT Service, visit www.turning-point.co.uk/services/impact