Finchale’s approach to helping clients to resolve or manage an addiction is to address it in the context of the person, rather than dealing with it separately.  Our clients will find it difficult to progress unless all of these barriers to success are dealt with as a single support package designed for that individual.

We work with a wide range of professionals and agencies but we can also call on our specialist RGN, RMN, Occupational Therapy, Psychological Health and Talking Therapy services to support clients in gaining their independence, moving into employment, or regaining their place in the community.

The following case study demonstrates the personal holistic approach we take at Finchale when helping veterans to resolve or manage their addictions. Many veterans find it difficult to progress unless all of their barriers to success are addressed within a single support package specifically designed for them.

Thirty-one year old Andy was referred to Finchale Veterans’ Services by his Community Psychiatric Nurse so that we could work with him to reduce his alcohol intake and social isolation.

Andy said: “I was stuck in a rut in the house, never saw anyone easier to have a drink and watch telly… ”   

It was a while before Andy would agree to an interview with a Finchale case worker but when he did he was pleased that the guy was a veteran who he could relate to. After an initial interview and a couple of home visits it was agreed that Andy would attend Finchale.

Andy initially was very irritable and tense about this as he did not know what to expect nor was he in control of what was going to happen. He said on more than one occasion that he wanted to turn around and head back home. But after an hour and half with a cuppa, lunch and a bit of banter with the other veterans, he wanted more and he began to attend Finchale on a regular basis. 

These regular visits enabled supported socialisation in a safe environment with fellow veterans. After a while he began to explore other avenues while at Finchale to assist with his mental and emotional wellbeing as well as his underlying anger issues. 

After further visits, Andy felt able to volunteer and get involved with Finchale’s Veterans’ Allotment in Newcastle. Andy’s case worker commented:

“Research has shown how gardening can have a therapeutic effect on mental and emotional wellbeing and we have used this successfully with other veterans in the past. The guys also enjoy the banter and team work aspects of it too…”. 

As a result Andy, with support, is self-managing his alcohol intake.  He is now applying for courses in track maintenance with the chance, on completion, of an interview.  He is a valued member of the allotment team encouraging others to get their hands dirty and takes delight in delivering the vegetables to community centres and food banks. 

 Andy said: 

 “I get out of the house now and meet up with other guys and I don’t get as angry anymore.  My drinking has changed and I now see a future for myself, the guys at Finchale helped change my life”

 His Community Psychiatric Nurse said: 

“This is a great result for Andy who was at his lowest…”