Community Groups and organisations from Derry’s Outer Nort area have been working in partnership with ‘Drink Wise Age Well’ in a bid to encourage local people aged 50 and over to make healtheri choices around alcohol.
‘Drink Wise Age Well,’ which is funded by the Big Lottery Fund, is a national programme which is led by Addiction NI in Northern Ireland and delivers support, activities and training to individuals, families and front line staff.
It is delivered throughout the Western Trust area in partnership with the Bogside and Bandywell Health Forum, Arc Healthy Living Centre and Business in the Community.
Adrian Loughrey, Prevention and Campaigns Worker, explained more about the background of the project:
“Recent research shows that it is the middle-aged and older adult groups which have seen the most notable increases in alcohol consumption and in alcohol-related deaths. They are also more likely to drink every day and to experience certain life events, including retirement and bereavement, which makes it more likely that they will turn to alcohol as a coping mechanism.
“The project aims to specifically support those over 50 to examine and address any alcohol issues they may have.
“We do this in a range of ways including one-to-one home support, family and peer group support. In addition, we offer community-based education and awareness sessions as well as a six-week resilience programme.”
Ciara Ferguson, Manager at Greater Shantallow area Partnership, which represents community groups in the Shantallow, Galliagh and Carnhill areas, welcomed the work of the project in the area:
“It’s great to see ‘Drink Wise, Age Well’ working in the area.
“Alcohol misuse and addiction remains a serious problem in this community and throughout our city and we support ‘Drink Wise Age Well’ in their efforts to address it. It is important that services like this tie in with local groups so that we can assist with identifying the issues and signposting to those in need. We look forward to working together in the future.”
Those who would like any further information on ‘Drink Wise Age Well’ or are concerned about their own or someone else’s drinking, if that person is 50 or older, can contact the organisation on 02871 160236, alternatively, find the group on Facebook (DrinkWise Age Well NI) or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.