Resilience Learning Partnership Trainee and ‘Health & Wellbeing at The Hard Edges’ Project Participant , Jamie McMillan, wrote this great article on finding help with recovery in Clackmannanshire.

Are you contemplating finding recovery from your alcohol or drug addiction but don’t know where to start? Tried to stop using alcohol and/or drugs in the past on your own and haven’t been able to maintain sobriety/abstinence? First things first, you should know your Rights In Recovery!

Rights, Respect and Recovery – The Scottish Government (2018)
Rights, Respect and Recovery: Action Plan – The Scottish Government (2019)

Within the above downloadable documents you will find what your rights are and how the Scottish Government hope to implement these rights into action now and in the future, by 31st March 2021. Here is quick summary of their Vision…

Scotland is a country where “we live long, healthy and active lives regardless of where we come from” and where individual, families and communities:

  • have the right to health and life free from the harms of alcohol and drugs
  • are treated with dignity and respect
  • are fully supported within communities to find their own type of recovery

And here is a brief summary of their proposed Action Plan:

The Action Plan is based around four Ministerial priorities which map on to the chapter headings within Rights, Respect and Recovery. These cover:

  1. Education, prevention and early intervention on alcohol and drugs
  2. A recovery orientated approach which reduces harms and prevents alcohol and drugs deaths
  3. A whole family approach on alcohol and drugs
  4. A public health approach to justice for alcohol and drugs

Now we’re a little more familiar with our rights when it comes to our recovery, where do we go to seek help and advice on becoming drug free?

Within Clackmannanshire there are multiple avenues we can choose to go down. If you’d prefer one-to-one support then Change Grow Live (CGL), based in Alloa, may be the organisation to help you. CGL also have offices within Stirling and Falkirk town centres for those within the Forth Valley seeking their services.

Change Grow Live Recovery Service – Forth Valley
Telephone: 0808 196 2188

For those who seek connection and mutual aid as part of their recovery then Forth Valley Recovery Community cafes and activities may suit you better or work alongside one-to-one support. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, they have had to suspend their regular meetings and activities. However, they are now delivering their services digitally, through daily Zooms calls. You can find out more over on their Facebook Page.

Normally, FVRC are very active and have in-person cafe-style meetings, where people come together in a group setting, with the added bonus of some hot drinks and food. They also host SMART Recovery meetings, discussion and other activities, such as quizzes and table tennis. SMART stands for Self-Management and Recovery Training, these are mutual aid meetings where we help each other in recovery from many forms of addictive behaviour. The four main points focused on within a SMART Meeting are; Building and Maintaining Motivation, Coping with Urges, Managing Thoughts Feelings and Behaviours and Living a Balanced Life.

FVRC have a newly developed app which can be found and downloaded from Google Play Store and Apple App Store called Forth Valley Recovers. Within the app you can find; advice and information regarding you First Steps, Recovery, Alcohol and Drugs and a Recovery Plan as well as other Useful Info.

FVRC also offer other outdoor and indoor activities during the week out with the cafes, these include; Fitness Fridays at The Peak, Recovery in the Wild every second Sunday as well as other days throughout spring, summer and autumn and Recovery Ramblers three days a week in Clackmannanshire, Stirling and Falkirk areas throughout spring, summer and autumn. FVRC are keen to take on suggestions from community members regarding activities within the community and implement them where possible.

Fellowship meetings and the 12 Step Programme are another option when seeking recovery from addiction. Forth Valley hosts a multitude of Anonymous meetings such as Alcoholics Anonymous, Cocaine Anonymous and Narcotics Anonymous, times and places for which can be found with a quick google search.

Recovery within Clackmannanshire and Forth Valley is possible, and there are options out there for everyone seeking support and advice in this sector. It’s knowing where to find help and finding a place to start with your recovery that can be daunting, but I hope after reading this that you are able to take even just one step and help yourself find the support you need in order to take control and beat your drug/alcohol problems.

No one should have to suffer alone and reaching out to a service or attending a meeting is often the first step in what can be a fulfilling life, free of addiction. It is out there and waiting for you to take advantage of, here in Clackmannanshire and beyond!

This article was written on the 25th of February 2020. In light of the current COVID-19 pandemic, some support services have changed the delivery of their services. You can still access their services, however they may be slightly different than as described here.