New Alcohol projects will provide vital support in Belfast Trust Area


Health Minister Edwin Poots has officially launched four new projects in the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust area aimed at addressing the harm related to alcohol misuse.


Through Big Lottery Fund’s Impact of Alcohol Programme, the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust has developed a co-ordinated and strategic portfolio of projects in partnership with four community-based agencies – Opportunity Youth, ASCERT, FASA and Addiction NI – that will see £1.5 million invested in alcohol services over the next four years.


Launching the projects Health Minister Edwin Poots said: “Alcohol misuse has a devastating impact on our society – first and foremost to the individuals directly affected, and their families and communities. But it also has a major impact on the health service, on social care, on the economy and on the criminal justice sector. Drug misuse often gets the headlines but alcohol remains our drug of choice.

I therefore welcome the fact that both the Belfast Trust and the Big Lottery Fund have recognised the impact that alcohol misuse has on our society, and I believe the comprehensive and strategic portfolio of projects that has been developed by the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust has the potential to have a positive impact on the lives of many people in the area."

The four projects launched at the event are as follows:

  • A Crisis Intervention Service – delivered by Opportunity Youth/DAISY. 
  • Alcohol Brief Interventions for those drinking hazarSTRIdously or harmfully, and for their family members – provided by ASCERT 
  • Youth Information Advice Centre – operated by FASA. 
  • Older People’s Project for those aged 55+ – operated by Addiction NI.

Speaking at the launch Colm Donaghy, Chief Executive, of the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust said; “The Impact of Alcohol projects has given the Belfast Trust the opportunity to work in partnership with the Big Lottery and the community and voluntary sector to develop services which will target alcohol misuse. It is a partnership about investment in the future health for the people of Belfast and to which all the partners are fully committed to ensure best practice and interventions are maintained at a high standard for all.

"It is only by working in partnership with users, individuals, families, carers, communities and other agencies, that we will successfully address health inequalities. The Trust will continue to build partnerships based on mutual trust and equal ownership, to achieve shared goals regarding the reduction of alcohol misuse within the greater Belfast area.”

Pictured: Edwin Poots, MLA Minister for Health Social Services and Public Safety, talking to Martin Fitzpatrick, Service User