Rochdale project celebrates second year having helped almost 60 residents break the cycle of offending behaviour

Date published: 11 January 2021

A Rochdale-based supported accommodation project recently celebrated its second anniversary having helped around 60 individuals overcome addiction in its first two years.

Redwood House, operated by Acorn Recovery Projects, is an eight-bed project aimed at supporting individuals trapped in repeated cycles of offending behaviour due to addiction. By working with experienced recovery workers, residents are given support to change their old behaviours and move away from chaotic lifestyles and offending.

The centre delivers a holistic range of services to give clients the greatest opportunity to succeed once their residential stay is over. Training courses are provided to help the residents back into education, employment, and independent living. Of the clients supported, over a third have secured training, voluntary work, paid employment, apprenticeships, or educational placements.

Currently, several residents are volunteering with Rochdale homelessness service, Sanctuary Trust, delivering food parcels for those struggling during the pandemic and helping to get the charities shop back up and running following closure during the first lockdown.

As with most services within Acorn Recovery Projects, part of The Calico Group, staff bring their own lived experience of addiction to help aid others in recovery.

Redwood House caretaker, Andrew Cassin is a former resident, overcoming homelessness and addiction to become a paid employee. This lived experience provides staff with unique insight and residents with powerful motivation.

Originally opened in 2010, Redwood House was the first facility of its kind in Rochdale. The centre re-opened in 2018 following an extended period of closure to help a new cohort of clients complete their drug and alcohol recovery.

A former Redwood House resident said: “Without this support from all the staff at Redwood House I genuinely believe I would be back in prison, they have shown me a new way of life.”

Sarah Tattersall, Operations Manager Communities and Prisons, Acorn Recovery Projects, said: “We are proud to provide a safe and stable supported housing environment. Despite the pandemic, we have continued to be there for those who want to break the cycle of repeated offending behaviour and focus on their recovery.

“As we look to the future, we will keep working with our partners in the prisons and probation services to continue the amazing results our service delivers.”

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