This week is Alcohol Awareness Week and staff from Forward Leeds will be at Asda in Middleton on Friday (20 November 2015) from 10:30am-4pm promoting the Like My Limit campaign with advice, information and freebies.
Forward Leeds currently has over 1,500 clients in treatment for alcohol; 30% of the service’s total client base. The service has received over 52,000 calls since it launched just four months ago.
Forward Leeds Outreach Teams will be giving out information and advice to anyone regularly drinking over the recommended daily guidelines. Details of locations and timings stalls can be found on facebook.com/forwardleeds and @forwardleeds.
Contrary to common perceptions, adults living in households with the highest income are twice as likely to drink heavily as adults with the lowest incomes – 22% compared to 10%. The estimated weekly spend on alcoholic drinks in households in Leeds is approximately £4.5 million, a total spend of £232 million each year on alcohol in the city. Like My Limit hopes to encourage more people in Leeds to access support to cut down their drinking.
Alcohol related hospital admission rates in Leeds are above average for England and as a result, alcohol has been identified as a major issue by the city’s health leaders.
Dr Ian Cameron, Leeds City Council Director of Public Health, said:
“We know that one of the big influences on individual’s health is the amount they drink. Drinking can have a whole range of negative consequences on individuals and their friends and families. So we want people to keep an eye on their intake, enjoy any drink in moderation and take a tip from the Like My Limit campaign.”
Education, Training and Employment Coordinator at Forward Leeds, Joy, is fully behind the campaign. Having experienced her own difficulties with alcohol, she is all too aware how easy it is for those who are employed in demanding roles to come under both personal and professional pressure and exceed safe drinking limits.
After years of enjoying her teaching career Joy started in a stressful new post. She explains:
“I found it all too easy to drink at home to escape my unhappiness and I found that my drinking became problematic almost before I realised”.
16 years on, Joy has turned her life around and re-invented herself. Through “sheer will and determination, I was able to avoid falling into the vicious cycle of addiction. I changed career and started again from the bottom.”
Joy re-trained as a counsellor whilst working in a variety of roles with DISC, the lead charity in the Forward Leeds partnership.
She added: “The advice and information that the Like My Limit campaign is offering to the public is extremely helpful and realistic for people who are not dependent drinkers but could slip into addiction due to stress and pressure that come from working life.”
If you would like further information and support around alcohol then you can get in touch with Forward Leeds via email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone (0113) 887 2477 – the service is free and confidential for everyone in Leeds.