A model of peer support is being developed for families of ex-Service personnel with substance use problems due to funding of £108,713 by the Forces in Mind Trust…

Researchers undertaking the 15-month project, at the University of York, seek to better understand the experiences and needs of the families of veterans who have substance use problems (FVSUs) through a thorough review of existing literature, and conducting interviews, focus groups and online surveys, ultimately working with the charity Adfam in the design of a new, bespoke model of peer support.

These activities will involve ex-Service personnel with substance use problems, the families of veterans with substance use problems, and service providers, to ensure a full range of experiences, needs and context is gathered.

Ray Lock, Chief Executive, Forces in Mind Trust, said: “Evidence shows that peer support is a successful support mechanism for individuals and groups coping with difficult circumstances. The range of methods and the scope of this FiMT funded study will ensure that a peer support model is specifically designed for this particular cohort.”

Charlie Lloyd, University of York, said: “There is a lot of evidence showing that families can be greatly affected by a loved one’s substance use and we also know that a relatively high proportion of veterans have problems with substance use. However, we know very little about the particular problems experienced by FVSUs.

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