We seem to have been very busy this year with many parents whose sons and daughters are struggling with using Cannabis calling us. Where possible we have been to see them to offer our support or alternatively offer some empathy over the phone or via email. It may be that we are able to sign post callers to an organisation which is best able to support them and in their local area, it may be that the caller is a carer for someone with ongoing addiction problems, we have been there and appreciate how difficult this is, seemingly to be on a permanent roller coaster. Some of our callers are from further afield than just the Yorkshire area. and where possible we go try to link the caller in with a support group nearer to them.
We have had a busy year visiting schools in the Yorkshire region, not only to speak to pupils but parents and teachers. We normally speak to year 9 pupils about 12 yrs of age and it never ceases to amaze us how attentive the pupils are, it may be that they know someone in the family or a friend with addiction problems. Usually after talking to the pupils for around 45 minutes, explaining how devastating drugs can be and the effect on families, we ask the young people if they have any questions. As you can imagine it is a difficult subject and not easy for anyone to get up in front of their peers and ask questions especially if the subject is close to home if they have an older sibling or uncle who has addiction problems: this can be very upsetting. We always offer to stay behind a short while so that pupils can come up to us individually allowing them a bit of privacy if they feel the need. We have had very positive feedback from the schools – teachers and pupils as well as parents, which is encouraging, and it is our hope and intention to continue with this work.
It is of course coming up to a very difficult time of the year for many of our members and also not easy for families battling addiction as well as bereaved through addiction. As usual the Luke and Marcus Trust will have our usual small Christmas Service at St Anne’s Cathedral in Leeds, followed by a lunch. The whole event is very special to us and although quite sad we usually manage a lot of laughs, the odd glass of wine helps.
As well as the above we continue to support our members having monthly meetings and supporting as much as we can.
May we take this opportunity to thank our members and friends who continue to help us with this work and also to the many very generous donations we receive during the year to help us keep going.