TLA’s unique Carr Beck scheme which helps women drinkers with multiple complex needs reduce their alcohol intake and turn their lives around has been recommissioned for a further three years.

Providing accommodation plus round the clock support for women with alcohol dependency and other complex needs, Carr Beck celebrated its 25th anniversary last year and is believed to be unique in the UK.

It has six self-contained flats in Leeds and takes a person-centred approach, encouraging residents to draw up and follow personal alcohol management plans to enable them to reduce their alcohol dependency, regain their independence, refocus on a healthier lifestyle and engage with education, training or employment opportunities.

In the last 25 years around 118 women have passed through Carr Beck’s doors and returned to their communities, friends and families to live more fulfilling independent lives. Now, thanks to the extension of their contract from Leeds City Council, the service is looking forward to supporting many more.

Turning Lives Around’s CEO Janet Spencer commented: “The issue of alcoholism amongst women which was an issue 25 years ago when Carr Beck was set up, remains a key – and growing - concern today. The number of women dying in Leeds because of their alcohol misuse is still rising and reports show increased high risk drinking amongst both young and middle-aged women.”

A highly specialist service, Carr Beck aims to support residents as they gradually decrease the amount they consume as they wean themselves off alcohol. Alongside this, the support team works with partner organisations such as healthcare providers and the benefits agency to help with health, wellbeing, budgeting and money management as well as helping clients and their families re-establish relationships which have become estranged.

“We have proved this approach works and always have a long waiting list of women in need of our support. Alcohol addiction does not discriminate – it can happen to anyone. Many of those referred to us have previously owned their own homes, raised families, had professional careers and been a respected integral part of a community, becoming at risk of homelessness due to eviction, domestic abuse or poor health relating to self-neglect,” explained Janet.

“Carr Beck is there to help manage addiction and enable residents to move forward with their lives and we are delighted that Leeds City Council has recognised the value of that by extending our contract so we can continue to provide this much needed support.”

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