Together we change lives

Impact Report

Addaction: what we do

Addaction support people to make positive behavioural change. Whether that's a problem with alcohol, drugs, or emotional health and wellbeing – we’re here to help people make changes to their lives in ways they never thought possible.

Increasingly, that means not just helping people with one issue – like their drug use – but all the other interrelated issues in their lives too, like housing, employability, education, offending and relationships. And we do this by working in partnership with a broad range of other organisations to help the people who use our services to make lasting, significant life changes.

We recognise that some people struggle to get access to all the support they need and – for too many – the system just isn’t good enough. So we’re working to spark a better future for people in need of support. We’re advocating on behalf of people whose voices aren’t being heard and aiming to build a system that works equally for everyone.
SparkInro11_16vs1 We're radically improving what we do We’re creating more joined up services We want to make the system better We're working smarter to make things simple We really love what we do and you will too

How we help adults

It is an extremely brave step to admit a problem and seek Addaction’s help. But we know that we must do more than just wait for people to come to us, so we're piloting innovative projects to reach out to people with the most complex needs, too.

Last year we engaged 24,251 adults in substance misuse treatment.


We tested 1,000 opiate users for chest disease in Liverpool and diagnosed 50% with emphysema who have now been referred for treatment.


75% of people reported improvements in psychological health at discharge, 63.8% in physical health and 70.4% in quality of life.

Dancing_Adults11_16vs1 KIERON’S STORY “Dancing at a music festival was unimaginable before.”

"It was 30 years before I finally got the help I needed. I’d been in the police but lost everything after I was hit by car. I ended up on heroin to dull the pain. I lost my leg eventually too."

"It got so bad that I tried to commit suicide – just necked every pill I could find. That was the turning point. Waking up in hospital and seeing my daughter at the foot of the bed."

"At Addaction, I felt like I finally belonged. Now I work there, helping other people in the same situation. Just this past weekend I was at a music festival, dancing with my girl. That was unimaginable before. But life’s good now."

How we help young people

We support young people with expert early intervention work and a range of education and prevention programmes in schools, youth clubs and other friendly settings. We help young people to understand the effects of drugs and alcohol and work with them to build resilience in the face of life's challenges.

Last year Young Addaction engaged 4,139 young people in treatment and reached tens of thousands more through early intervention work.


Early results of the Amy Winehouse Foundation Resilience Programme, which we co-run, showed reduction in cannabis and alcohol use of up to 40%.


Our Mind and Body Programme has shown a 33% drop in self-harming thoughts and 26% drop in actual self-harm among participating young people.

Secret_YoungPeople11_16vs1 EMILY’S STORY “Letting go of my secret felt like unlockingsomethinginside.” SECRETS

"I was a lost teenager, I suppose. I felt I didn’t have much control over my life and emotions. Self-harming was the only way I could get some relief. I was convinced I was coping but I wasn’t, not at all."

"My school persuaded me to take part in the Mind and Body Programme and I’m so glad I did. Talking to someone who wasn’t afraid to discuss self-harm, knowing that there were people there for me, letting go of my secret – it felt like unlocking something inside."

"Everyone has been so caring and supportive. I can honestly say I loved every minute."

How we help families

Improving the quality of family life and relationships is at the heart of all of Addaction's services. Our programmes aim to improve parenting, support people through damaged or abusive relationships, reduce exclusions and truancy, anti-social behaviour and offending rates, and help people get into work.

Last year, we supported some 800 families.


Over 90% of those on our Breaking the Cycle programme reported improvement in their parenting skills.


Over half of parents who had shown signs of clinical depression when joining our Breaking the Cycle programme showed no such signs at completion.

Family_FamilyServices11_16vs1 “They helped me rebuildmy relationship withmum and dad.” RYAN’S STORY

"I used to have a pretty good relationship with my parents, but things started to fall apart when I was a teenager."

"I was smoking cannabis. I got in trouble for criminal damage and had problems with my temper, getting violent."

"But I wanted to change. I didn’t want to be like all the other kids around here. Going to Addaction helped – I could see an alternative. They also helped me rebuild my relationship with mum and dad."

"I’ve just got a place on a painting and decorating course at college and when I finish I’ll have a job at my dad’s painting and decorating business."

How we help people with their emotional health

We support people with their emotional health through Thinkaction. We provide a wide range of holistic treatments for people who are experiencing mild to moderate/severe mental health problems.

Last year, 9,851 people completed a course of treatment at Thinkaction.


Thinkaction services achieved a moving to recovery rate of 51%, well above the national average.


95% of our mental health clients reported a positive experience of their treatment.

Camera_MentalHealth “When I'm taking photos.It's a different head space.” CLAIRE’S STORY

"Before it all happened I relied on nobody. Then suddenly I didn't know where to go, how to be, how to fix this problem. It was a real nightmare."

"I had a breakdown. I lost my job, and the job centre was giving me nothing but hassle, which made me anxious and stressed. Then I was also losing my home, which really pushed me into a depression. It climaxed and became too much."

"My sessions at Thinkaction helped straight away. I noticed the change of wanting to do more, having a desire just to do more things, and that’s when I developed my photography practice."

"They’re similar in a way. Thinkaction makes me feel positive and relaxed, like when I'm taking photos. It's a different head space."

How we help people in the criminal justice system

We provide a wide range of substance misuse services in both prisons and young offender institutions. We work closely with the police and probation services in many locations and have led on a number of pilot projects and commissions to improve the support given to ex-offenders and help them resettle back into communities.

We offer supportive therapeutic interventions in eight prisons.


Our Trans4rm support programme in HMP Lincoln has a 90% successful completion rate.


Last year we ran over 200 therapy groups in YOI Feltham.

Footprints_CriminalJustice11_16vs1 “I’ve walked inthe same shoes.I can help othersavoid makingmy mistakes.” STEVE’S STORY

"I was against drinking for ages, but then I started to get into trouble. I was sentenced to a Youth Offender’s Institute and it was down to all that. Drinking, drugs and violence."

"When my ex then had our baby, I thought: I’ve got to sort myself out, man up and take responsibility for some things."

"Thanks to the Addaction staff inside, I learned to cope with what I’ll be faced with when I get out."

"I’m a peer supporter so if people want to talk about cannabis or Spice, they know they can come to me. I’ve walked a mile in the same shoes as them so I can help others avoid making my mistakes. I’d love to do the same thing when I get out."




Grant income 10.6%
Trading & other income 1.7%

Charitable activities
Young people 9.4%
Adult services 67.1%
Family services 2.4%
Mental health services 8.8%



Cost of generating funds 1.4%

Charitable expenditure
Young people 10.7%
Adult services 75.1%
Family services 2.9%
Mental health services 9%
Public policy and communication 0.9%

For more detail, please read our Annual Report & Accounts 2015-16.