Helping people to live free from addiction

ESRA is a vibrant and inclusive charity that welcomes and protects some of the most marginalised people in our community.

Almost all the staff at ESRA are in recovery themselves. This promotes a level of understanding, connection and trust with clients.This is especially important at the beginning of the client relationship when they will decide whether or not ESRA is the right place for them.

Adapting to Covid19

This is how we have adapted our in-person support services to suit our new circustances. Staying connected is still at the heart of everything that we do.

Support calls

ESRA staff call clients every day. They check in, see how people are doing and find out what they need. In this way our clients are supported, signposted or referred to our partner organisations. Safeguarding policies are put in practice as needed.

In the first month of lockdown, ESRA made well over 300 support calls to 135 individual clients in Eastbourne and Hastings.

Activity packs

We have been sourcing and delivering activity packs for our clients. These include a starter knitting along with an online tutorial, various art packs, mindfulness colouring books, puzzle books and collage boxes.

In the first month of lockdown, ESRA delivered 45 activity packs to our clients to alleviate the challenges of living in isolation.

Virtual groups

We have slowly started reintroducing our recovery groups and using Zoom. We have updated pur safeguarding policies to reflect the changing circumstances.

Well thank you ESRA and Cafe North for the group today. It was really good and thank you for all the support that you have given us over the last 7 weeks the art therapy things that we have received have been very much appreciated and I really want to say that if it was not for ESRA and the cafe I would not be here today. Thank you to you all for saving my life.

Thank you so much for having me in the meeting today, it really lifted my spirits! Just arrived home to and seen my art pack, sorry I missed whoever delivered them it’s great I’m chuffed to bits! Thank them for me and thank you to you all at ESRA for caring and reaching out to us who deeply rely on your services! Much love and stay safe!

Social media

Facebook is where we talk to our clients and they talk to us. It allow our clients to maintain social contact and to share what they have been doing. It also provides an opportunity for out clients to support one another.

Our volunteer programme

ESRA has always been peer-led, right from the start as a volunteer organisation, and also now as a registered charity. We always encourage clients to volunteer at ESRA so that we can continue that ethos, but not without as much training and support as each potential volunteer needs.

Of the 115 volunteers that have been trained at ESRA in Hastings since January 2018, 20 are now in paid employment. This shows that with the support available at ESRA, clients can get back on their feet and successfully reintegrate into the community.

Our volunteer programme is entirely consistent with our aim of supporting clients to the point where they can build a robust recovery and become self-sufficient.

ESRA volunteers Jason and Danny have been doing a magnificent job painting both recovery hubs.

Why we are different

At ESRA anyone can turn up and self-refer. Subject to a short induction, they can keep coming to ESRA for as long as they like. The lack of a stated end-date helps put clients’ minds at rest because there is no fear of having to leave before they are ready.

ESRA clients are supported practically, emotionally, and sometimes even medically. All staff have had first aid training and are also well trained and experienced in safeguarding practice. The safety and well-being of our clients’ mental and physical health is paramount, and we will refer them to other support agencies when necessary.

ESRA practices and promotes a broad and compassionate service that is not available anywhere else.

Why it matters

Hastings Hub is in Castle Ward which is ranked within the top 8% for deprivation on the IMD 2019. Eastbourne Hub is in Devonshire ward and located in the town centre which is ranked within the 10% most deprived set of wards on the IMD 2019 too.

According to the report, Change, Grow Live (November 2019), there is high demand for addiction services in our areas.

There are 638 people in Hastings and 604 people in Eastbourne accessing treatment.

For the same period 2017/18, the Public Health Profile shows that there were 779 people per 100,000 admitted to hospital for alcohol-related conditions in Hastings and in Eastbourne this figure was 660 people per 100,000.

Mental health and addiction also go hand in hand too – with many individuals suffering from significant mental health problems using alcohol and drugs to self-medicate. This is reflected in the suicide rates.

In Hastings 25.1 men per 100,000 took their own life between 2016 and 2018. This is significantly worse than the average rate for even the most deprived decile in England which is 9.6 per 100,000.

There are very few services in the two areas that provide the support, advice and guidance to people in recovery.

Do you need help?

If you are already in some kind of recovery and need some support, then please get in touch so that we can have a chat. 

Get in touch