Lottery grant saves Mansfield charity for recovering addicts

A charity for recovering drug and alcohol addicts that has a base in Mansfield has been rescued from closure at the 11th hour.

Wednesday, 19th May 2021, 2:19 pm
Sutton mum Claire Hannah with her two daughters. She says Double Impact saved her life.

Double Impact Services, which has provided a lifeline for hundreds of people over the last 23 years, was on death row waiting to hear if it would receive a National Lottery grant to keep it going.

But now it is full steam ahead for the future after a bumper award of £479,805 for the next four years from the Lottery’s Community Fund.

The news was music to the ears of former addict Claire Hannah, of Sutton, who insists Double Impact saved her life.

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A session at the Double Impact academy in Mansfield before the Covid pandemic.

The 36-year-old mum-of-two lost her job and home and was refused permission to see her children after becoming an alcoholic.

At her lowest ebb, she even had to live in a Wendy house in the back garden of a friend.

But she was transformed by the help she received from the charity at its academy on St John Street in Mansfield

Claire said: “It is fabulous news, and very exciting that people in the Mansfield and Ashfield area will continue to get support.

How Double Impact adapted to Zoom meetings online during the pandemic.

"It will definitely save people’s lives. When everyone was being told Double Impact would shut, they went into panic mode. They were asking: who do I see, where do I go?

"You could tell they had lost motivation, and that is worrying because I know what it leads to – the cycle of addiction.

"It is fantastic that the service is to keep going, and a lot of people are really impressed.”

Double Impact, which has its headquarters in Nottingham, offers a unique service that helps people recovering from drug or alcohol addiction to rebuild their lives.

It gives them access to education, jobs and personal-development opportunities so they can regain not only their health but also their dignity, confidence, purpose in life and their place in society.

The grant will fund a new service called Recovery Links Nottinghamshire, which will offer a combination of web-based and telephone information, peer support groups and connections to community-based help.

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There will be less of a face-to-face approach, but from the Double Impact academy in Mansfield, Recovery Links will serve recovering addicts across the county.

Steve Youdell, director of operations for the charity, said: “We are very excited that we can move forward with our plans.

"We were very fortunate to receive emergency Covid funding during the pandemic, from the Lottery and also from the Coalfields Regeneration Trust and the Police and Crime Commissioner’s Office.

"The pandemic has had a big impact on people’s mental health and, unsurprisingly, using alcohol and other substances has been one way for many to cope.

"We have adapted our original plans for the new service in light of what we have learned over this past year or so.

"We believe Recovery Links Nottinghamshire will meet the increased demand for information and support which we have experienced.

"It will also provide the accessibility that people these days not only expect but really need, especially in large rural locations.”

The National Lottery Community Fund was created from the £30 million raised each week by players of the Lottery.

Since 2004, it has awarded more than 200,000 grants worth a total of £9 billion to good causes and community projects.

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