Handing over our SUI project: Thank you to staff and volunteers

As of 1 February, VoiceAbility will be handing over the reins of the Frontline Service User Involvement contract to SHP.  We would like to thank everyone who has been involved over the years for their support, dedication and hard work and hope you will continue to support getting the voices of service users out there in order to shape current and future provisions.

The new provider of the Frontline group will be SHP. To find out more go to the SHP website, and get in touch with SHP email camdenrecoveryservice@shp.org.uk.

Our peer mentoring in Camden service is unaffected – we will continue to provide peer mentoring in Camden until at least 2020.


New Edition of Frontline newsletter!


Frontline front pageThe new edition contains:

  • Drink Drug News (DDN) conference report by Frontline members
  • Camden User Involvement changes
  • Hep C support group update
  • Artwork from Frontline members
  • Article by Alex Boyt (former Involvement Coordinator)
  • Change, Grow, Live (CGL) info
  • Single Homeless Project (SHP) info
  • Integrated Camden Alcohol Service (ICAS) info
  • Westminster Drugs Project (WDP) info

Read it online here: Frontline newsletter Autumn 2018 click here to read

Or collect your free copy from the Frontline forum on Thurs 4th October at St. Pancras hospital

Streets Fest

VoiceAbility was happy to be invited to the Streets Fest organised by Streets Kitchen and local councils. A lot of effort had been put into this event, as demonstrated by the amount of stalls present and all in done in a very short space of time. This is a great testament to the organisers!

There were showering facilities; which about 60 people used throughout the afternoon, a clothing stall; with wash packs, clothing of all different types including socks and boxers as well as footwear. Clothes were provided by various sources and given out freely to those in need.

There was also live music of different genres. VoiceAbility helped out with some tasks as well as people from all walks of life who turned up offering to help. It was really pleasing to see this kind of participation and was a timely reminder that there are plenty out there that still care about their fellow human beings.

Streets Fest

Sunday Project volunteer Ritchie on one of the stalls

Drug related deaths: Public Health England update

Overdose aware image

“In recognition of International Overdose Awareness Day, Public Health England’s (PHE) London Alcohol, Drugs and Tobacco team is taking this opportunity to share some data, resources and guidance to support stakeholders in considering further actions to tackle Drug Related Deaths (DRDs) at a local level.

DRDs have been increasing nationally in recent years and London has also seen a large increase in the number of DRDs since 2012. Although the latest 2017 Office of National Statistics data shows that deaths have decreased this year in London compared to 2016, (215 in 2017, from 284 in 2016), more work is required to bring down the number of preventable deaths.

Nationally, heroin related deaths continue to make up the largest proportion of DRDs. Around half of all heroin deaths are among people not in treatment. Cocaine deaths have continued to rise since 2011, with another increase from 371 in 2016 to 432 in 2017. This figure includes deaths from crack cocaine and echoes the story seen elsewhere of increasing cocaine and crack availability, purity and use. Deaths from new psychoactive substances (NPS) in 2017 halved compared to the previous year, from 123 to 61, following the successful introduction of the Psychoactive Substances Act. Deaths where synthetic cannabinoids were mentioned on the death certificate were again the largest category of NPS and made up nearly half of these (24 of the 61).

Nationally, fentanyl and fentanyl-analogue related deaths have increased from 58 to 75 and 1 to 31 respectively in the latest published statistics. Many of these deaths relate to an incident of heroin adulterated with fentanyl in late 2016 and early 2017. PHE continues to coordinate a public health response to the risks of potent opioids, based on information gathered through local areas and national agencies.

Commissioners and Service Providers should consider how they can increase their efforts to reach out to those most at need. The PHE London Alcohol, Drugs and Tobacco Team will continue to support local authorities (LAs) in delivering tailored, effective services where people stand the best chance of recovery.”

To read the full document and access the resources, click here: PHE London Drug Related Deaths and Naloxone Bulletin 2018

BBC: Government plan to end homelessness by 2027

rough sleeping

Housing Secretary James Brokenshire vowed to make homelessness “a thing of the past” and the government has vowed to end rough sleeping by 2027…

But when questioned on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Mr Brokenshire said half of the promised £100m had already been committed to homelessness and rough sleeping, with the other half “reprioritised” from existing budgets in his department.

You can read the full article on the BBC website here: https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-45162892

Public Health England (PHE) Hep C update

World Hepatitis Day took place on 28th July and Public Health England (PHE) London would like to take the opportunity to remind everyone about the resources available for Hepatitis C at a local level.

Hep C

Up to 58,000 people in London have been exposed to the virus, with 40,000 of these people estimated to have active disease. Forty percent of these people are thought to be undiagnosed. Ninety percent of those affected by Hepatitis C will have acquired their infection through injecting drug use.

New Direct Acting Antivirals (DAAs) have revolutionised the treatment of Hepatitis C in recent years, reducing the amount of time treatment takes, vastly improving cure rates, and eliminating unpleasant side effects. In January 2018, NHS England committed to eliminating Hepatitis C five years earlier than the goal set by the World Health Organisation of 2030.

You can find PHE London Hepatitis C Bulletin 2018 here