Russell Brand launches fund to raise money for drug and alcohol treatment ‘recovery communities’

The Give it Up Fund, which will be managed by Comic Relief, aims to provide financial aid to help people remain free of substance misuse

Russell Brand has announced a fund to develop recovery communities for people leaving treatment for drug and alcohol abuse.

The Give it Up Fund, which will be managed by Comic Relief, aims to provide financial aid to help people remain free from substance abuse by setting up support groups in three pilot areas.

Russell Brand Accused Of Homophobic Slur At Cambridge Union Address

"It's integral that people entering a life of abstinence after the chaos of addiction have stability, support and a role to play in the wider community," he said.

"With this fund we have the opportunity to perform a kind of social alchemy turning hapless (often smelly) junkies into helpful busy bodies, pottering about and contributing. It's the sort of scheme that even the Daily Mail could support."

Recovery communities aim to provide an individual with all the local services they need to sustain abstinence – including providing help with housing, career support, peer support and health support – so that they can continue to make lasting changes to improve their quality of life.

Gilly Green, Head of UK Grants at Comic Relief said: "Comic Relief has supported those facing addiction for many years. We’re looking forward to finding out more about the potential of recovery communities through these pilots and hearing more inspiring stories about how they can help people to recover from addiction."

Russell Brand with Tessa Jowell MP on BBC Question Time Russell Brand with Tessa Jowell MP on BBC Question Time Brand, who himself is a recovering heroin addict and alcoholic, has become a voice for those in recovery and a frequent talking head on the subject.

Russell Brand Calls David Cameron A 'Filthy, Dirty, Posh W**ker'

Speaking on Question Time back in June 2013, he said: "I don’t think drug laws are working because people take drugs all the time. People will take drugs because of social, psychological and emotional reasons.

"For me it’s not about the drug laws, it’s about treating people with addiction issues in a compassionate and empathetic way."

"As a recovering drug addict myself, when I was using drugs I didn’t care if drugs were illegal.

"If I need drugs because I’m in pain inside, I’m taking drugs and I know this to be true of drug addicts all over our country.

Brand, who himself is a recovering heroin addict and alcoholic, has become a voice for those in recover. "If you criminalise them and marginalise them, you place an industry in the hands of criminals and you make it difficult and shaming for them to get treatment. That is the wrong way to handle the situation."

Russell Brand Joins Anonymous Million Man March

"I cannot accurately convey the efficiency of heroin in neutralising pain," he wrote for The Spectator on heroin abstinence and addiction in March. "It transforms a tight white fist into a gentle brown wave, and from my first inhalation 15 years ago it fumigated my private hell.

"A bathroom floor in Hackney embraced me like a womb, and now whenever I am dislodged from comfort my focus falls there.

"It is ten years since I used drugs or drank alcohol and my life has immeasurably improved. I have a job, a house, a cat, good friendships and generally a bright outlook."

Brand will be speaking at The Recovery Group UK (RGUK) and Give it Up’s conference ‘Creating Recovery’, aimed at  health commissioners, those working in the drug and alcohol treatment system and police and crime commissioners, at the London Film Museum today.



PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Compensation and Benefits Manager - Brentwood - Circa £60,000

£60000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Compensation and Benefits Manager - Compensat...

Finance Manager - Recruitment Business (Media & Entertainment)

£28000 - £35000 per annum + negotiable: Sauce Recruitment: We have an exciting...

HR Advisor - North London / North West London

£30000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Advisor - North London...

Finance Manager - Recruitment Business (Media & Entertainment)

£28000 - £32000 per annum + negotiable: Sauce Recruitment: We have an exciting...

Day In a Page

Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

A Syrian general speaks

A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities
‘A bit of a shock...’ Cambridge economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

‘A bit of a shock...’ Economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

Guy Scott's predecessor, Michael Sata, died in a London hospital this week after a lengthy illness
Fall of the Berlin Wall: History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War

Fall of the Berlin Wall

History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War
How to turn your mobile phone into easy money

Turn your mobile phone into easy money

There are 90 million unused mobiles in the UK, which would be worth £7bn if we cashed them in, says David Crookes
Independent writers remember their Saturday jobs:

Independent writers remember their Saturday jobs

"I have never regarded anything I have done in "the media" as a proper job"
Lyricist Richard Thomas shares his 11-step recipe for creating a hit West End musical

11-step recipe for creating a West End hit

Richard Thomas, the lyricist behind the Jerry Springer and Anna Nicole Smith operas, explains how Bob Dylan, 'Breaking Bad' and even Noam Chomsky inspired his songbook for the new musical 'Made in Dagenham'
Tonke Dragt's The Letter for the King has finally been translated into English ... 50 years on

Buried treasure: The Letter for the King

The coming-of-age tale about a boy and his mission to save a mythical kingdom has sold a million copies since it was written by an eccentric Dutchwoman in 1962. Yet until last year, no one had read it in English
Can instilling a sense of entrepreneurship in pupils have a positive effect on their learning?

The school that means business

Richard Garner heads to Lancashire, where developing the 'dragons' of the future is also helping one community academy to achieve its educational goals
10 best tablets

The world in your pocket: 10 best tablets

They’re thin, they’re light, you can use them for work on the move or keeping entertained
Lutz Pfannenstiel: The goalkeeper who gave up Bayern Munich for the Crazy Gang, Bradford and a whirlwind trawl across continents

Lutz Pfannenstiel interview

The goalkeeper who gave up Bayern Munich for the Crazy Gang, Bradford and a whirlwind trawl across continents
Pete Jenson: Popular Jürgen Klopp can reignite Borussia Dortmund’s season with visit to Bayern Munich

Pete Jenson's a Different League

Popular Klopp can reignite Dortmund’s season with visit to Bayern
John Cantlie video proves that Isis expects victory in Kobani

Cantlie video proves that Isis expects victory in Kobani

The use of the British hostage demonstrates once again the militants' skill and originality in conducting a propaganda war, says Patrick Cockburn
The killer instinct: The man who helps students spot potential murderers

The killer instinct

Phil Chalmers travels the US warning students how to spot possible future murderers, but can his contentious methods really stop the bloodshed?
Clothing the gap: A new exhibition celebrates women who stood apart from the fashion herd

Clothing the gap

A new exhibition celebrates women who stood apart from the fashion herd
Fall of the Berlin Wall: Goodbye to all that - the lost world beyond the Iron Curtain

The Fall of the Berlin Wall

Goodbye to all that - the lost world beyond the Iron Curtain