Family Support at Christmas
Friday 29 December 2017

For Forward Family Support client Angie, Christmas can be a difficult time.

“I have been with my partner for five years and have only had one Christmas together, he seems to prefer prison food. I was looking forward to Christmas at home together but unfortunately, after less than a year out of prison, he is now back in prison for this year’s Christmas dinner. This year will be a lonely but relaxing Christmas for me”

For the families of people in prison or in active addiction, Christmas can be a lonely time, Forward’s family support team supports people who are affected by someone else’s drug or alcohol use during the festive season. For Tony, who has a son in active addiction Christmas is a time of worry:

“I always worry where my son is mentally, Christmas is somewhat dulled by worrying about him and overthinking, which is my own worst enemy.” 

Forward brings people together who have similar experiences to offer 1:1 counselling and group sessions to ensure that they have the tools to manage their family relationships. Jackie, who has been using the Family Service in Hull told us what the service does for her:

“It’s given me the tools I need to stay strong, as well as to support my husband in his recovery. I’ve stayed friends with some of the people in the group, and two of us now do informal drop-ins at the Bricworks Recovery Café once a month. Bricworks is a safe space for family members of people who have issues with addiction to have a chat and share our experiences of how the service has helped us.”

For Forward clients who are tackling their addiction whilst serving a prison sentence, Christmas can be a particularly difficult time, especially when they have children. Our Family team in HMP Standofrd Hill have been working with the prison staff and local business to ensure that Children who visit their Father’s in prison over the festive period also have a gift from Santa waiting for them. Kasia, a Forward Family Support worker said:

“Family Workers at HMP Standford Hill have to rely on the generosity of prison staff and local partners to ensure that each child can get a gift. The reward for all of our work is the happiness and smiles on children faces which Santa’s visit and gifts evoke.”  

For more information on Forward's Family Support Service please visit 

https://www.forwardtrust.org.uk/our-services/family-support/