FIRST MINISTER Mark Drakeford has launched a specialist charity to help people affected by a combination of substance misuse and mental health conditions.
Adferiad Recovery was unveiled at a high-profile reception at the National Eisteddfod in Llanrwst.
It aims to support people who use drink or drugs as a way of coping with chronic mental illness or crisis — and those whose mental health is compromised by their relationship with harmful substances.
The new national body has been created by leaders from long-established Welsh charities Hafal, CAIS and WCADA.
CAIS chief executive and Adferiad trustee Clive Wolfendale said the charity had been set up to deliver a single, coordinated response for vulnerable people who face complex life challenges — which often include homelessness, barriers to employment and experience of the criminal justice system.
“We’re thrilled that the First Minister agreed to publicly launch Adferiad, and that he has been so supportive of the new charity’s work in recent months,” he said.
“Those of us who work in mental health and substance misuse services know only too well that these conditions, and the personal, social and economic circumstances which contribute to them, are so frequently interlinked.
“This can make accessing effective treatment difficult — and we often hear stories of people in crisis who are turned away from health services because of their complex, dual or multiple diagnosis.
“So Adferiad Recovery will use the combined expertise of three organisations with wide-ranging experience in the fields of substance misuse, mental health, housing, criminal justice and employment support to give vulnerable and often marginalised people access to the consistent and seamless health and wellbeing services they really need.”
Tackling co-occurring substance misuse and mental health conditions has been identified as a major priority by the Welsh Government as highlighted by an update on national service delivery planning currently out for consultation.
The First Minister welcomed the “forward-thinking” Adferiad project.
“I’m very pleased to officially launch Adferiad Recovery, a project which offers an invaluable service to some of the most vulnerable people in our society,” Mr Drakeford said.
“Adferiad will help people who are facing major challenges to easily access the services they need and give them the ongoing support that is crucial to their recovery.
“It is good to see three of Wales’ leading charities, CAIS, Hafal and WCADA, working in partnership to create this forward-thinking project.”
Adferiad is based at Inroads in the First Minister’s Cardiff West constituency, and will be led by director Lisa Shipton and chaired by Hafal chief executive Alun Thomas.
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Adferiad Recovery is a charity registered in England and Wales | Reg No: 1175085