Breaking the Cycle

Addaction is one of the UK's biggest drug and alcohol treatment charities. We work with all kinds of people from all walks of life, and we know that addiction doesn't just affect individuals - it also causes pain and problems for their friends, their family and, more often than not, their children.

In fact, at least 1.3 million children - the size of the population of Kent - are living with families where one parent has a drink problem. For these children, drug and alcohol problems become all too familiar, and growing up in such situations means they are seven times more likely to become addicted themselves as adults. Also, a parent's drug use is a depressingly common factor when children are taken into care.

Breaking the Cycle is Addaction's innovative approach to this problem.

Our experience tells us that most parents (or carers) with drug or alcohol problems really do want to change, but find the support isn't there to help them do so. Addaction is working in partnership with the Zurich Community Trust to provide that support, to give parents and families the chance to get their lives back on track.

Addaction workers provide an individually designed care package, which takes into account the needs of the whole family. This package includes a wide range of services to help people overcome their problems (such as personal counselling, or help with accessing other services, such as housing associations or health clinics).

Our current Breaking the Cycle sites are:


South West

  • Devon
  • Cornwall
  • North Somerset
  • Bournemouth

North West and Midlands

  • Sefton
  • St Helens

East of England

  • Tower Hamlets
  • Brent
  • Kingston Upon Thames
  • Lincolnshire

Interventions used by our coordinators include:

  • prioritisation, assessment and care planning
  • a range of motivational and solution-focused interventions
  • advice and information
  • one-to-one and family support
  • group work
  • family mediation
  • signposting
  • advocacy
  • home visits
  • work with children through coordination with partner agencies and schools
  • systemic family therapy