Lancashire's Police and Crime Commissioner Clive Grunshaw has heard how funding from his fund, dedicated to tackling reoffending and helping make sure former prisoners get out of a life of crime, has supported a project helping ex-offenders reintegrate into the community.
The joint project between Delphi Medical, Horizon Drug and Alcohol Treatment Service and Mulberry Community Project Blackpool, works to support ex-offenders on the Fylde coast
whose offending has at least in part been driven by substance misuse.
This is done through group and 1 to 1 support from Mulberry Community Project, with other support including referrals to specialist services, links into community activities and other
networks, in addition to the safe and stable accommodation.
The commissioner met the team delivering the project, along with people who have benefited from the support being provided to move away from substance misuse.
He said: "It was really inspirational to hear stories from people taking part in this and making a positive change in their lives, with support from this project and the other fantastic work
being done across Blackpool by the Horizon team, Delphi Medical and Mulberry Community Project.
"A safe and reliable place to live is such an important part of making this change and this project takes into account that recovering from substance abuse is a journey which needs
help and support along the way.
"This is a clear example of how my Reducing Reoffending Fund is making a real difference within the Blackpool community but also across Lancashire, in our neighbourhoods and in
the lives of the people who live there.
"Tackling crime and reoffending is a key priority in my Police and Crime Plan and by working with partners to support the delivery of these projects we are delivering value for money, whilst helping people turn their lives around."
Keith Stevenson, founder of Mulberry Community Project, said: "This is a real example of how multi-agency working can help the most disadvantaged in Blackpool.
"It not only helps reduce reoffending but helps rebuild people’s lives and sets them on course for a productive satisfying life without mind-altering substances and all the misery that causes both to the individual person and their families."
Paul, who has benefited from the project, said: "The Mulberry Project, specifically the Low Dose House, saved my life. On February 26, I was discharged from hospital and had 24 hours to stay clean of illegal substances and to get into the low dose house.
"I was a prolific offender and literally a day or two away from living on the streets. Without the low dose house I would have been in prison, offending or dead by now. Mulberry and the low dose house are exactly what Blackpool needs."