Tuesday, 9 June 2020

Duchess Kate Urges Those Struggling With Addiction To Seek Support

During a virtual tour of Action on Addiction's Clouds House in Wiltshire, the Duchess of Cambridge spoke about the importance of those struggling with addiction to reach out and seek support. The messages comes as a YouGov survey commissioned by the charity found a quarter of adults are drinking more during lockdown. Fifteen percent revealed they were experiencing physical alcohol withdrawal symptoms as well as problems relating to financial worries or relationship issues. 


Speaking to Action on Addiction's CEO Graham Beech, Kate said: "The worrying thing is, it is all those people who aren't necessarily reaching out who are struggling, who perhaps don't feel they can reach out. Or the fact that maybe they haven't realised that addictive behaviours have sort of established, particularly if it's the first time - and it's those people who aren't necessarily being vocal about it. It's making sure that they know they can reach out and that you are here to help and support them in this very difficult time."



'During the video call, Kate spoke with CEO Graham Beech, clinical lead Dr Simone Yule and treatment manager Anya Sparks and asked them whether they had noticed a difference in the number of people contacting them for emergency help.
Dr Yule said: "We are seeing more alcohol issues and in the community. I think definitely we know alcohol sales have gone up exponentially, so the rise in people that are now starting to seek treatment with lockdown gradually lifting, I think that is going to have a big impact."
Mr Beech told the Duchess their website was busier than ever and they were doing as much as they could to connect people digitally and also to let people know Clouds was still open.
He added: "We have done some polling and we have discovered that people are struggling during lockdown. More people are drinking and gambling but also we are concerned about the number of people who are struggling to maintain their recovery and are getting into relapse. We are particularly concerned about families and young people and the impact that lockdown and addiction is having."

During a conversation with resident Chris, Kate heard about his journey from rehab to lockdown. "There's always the fear of missing out and that kind of got taken away in a sense, so it was really nice for me, it felt gentle." The Duchess praised the work of staff and their efforts to provide services throughout the pandemic. "It's a lifeline for many people and you know and it's great that they are able to continue the support, whether remotely or those who are actually still receiving treatment now during lockdown and providing life changing support."


Kate also had the opportunity to speak to Lucy, whose mother received vital help at Clouds House. More from the Mail Online:

'The Duchess of Cambridge also spoke to Lucy, whose mother was previously a resident before the family embarked on a series of courses together to help her beat her addictions.
Lucy told the royal: 'We do it every few months or whenever mum feels she needs it, or whenever we feel we need it, and it's been game changing for our family - really beneficial to be in a room and talk so openly as we have done.' The duchess praised the holistic approach of Clouds and Action on Addiction.
'For someone who is suffering to take that one individual and ask them to go through it themselves is a real challenge,' she said. 'But if you can pull in family members or those around them to try and help them through, it is really extraordinary and actually I've heard in the past everyone learns a huge amount from it as well, so it's really fantastic.'

As the call and virtual tour wrapped up, Kate promised to pay a visit in the future. 


Kate privately visited Clouds House in 2012, in a private capacity, when William was deployed in the Falklands.


During a speech to mark the opening of a new treatment centre in Wickford in 2018, Kate recalled the visit saying: "It seems like a long time since I first got involved with Action On Addiction, I think it was six years ago, but they have a very special place for me and were really at the start of my learning, particularly now, with the development of my work into mental health. You are very special to me, so it's great to be here as well as seeing the development of where the charity has gone over the years gone past."


If interested in reading the results of the survey, please click here. Graham Beech also said of the findings:

“We know that addiction feeds on isolation, and the precautionary measures that are in place because of COVID-19 create the circumstances upon which addiction thrives. Yet, despite this, a significant number of people do not know how to access treatment, support or advice, and addiction remains hidden from view in public health terms.
The damaging consequences for individuals and families can often be traumatic, and it is vital that we get the message across that help is available to people who need it now and that they can kickstart a person’s recovery during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Whilst, of course, not everyone – whatever their behaviour during lockdown – is developing an addiction the picture from a public health and social perspective is one of concern. Crucially, the findings signal that problems of addiction are growing in both volume and complexity, and are not confined to one substance, one activity, or one small section of our society. Our survey also highlights a much-neglected area of public policy, that of the paucity of provision for children and young people who are showing signs of addictive behaviour –or experiencing a full-blown addiction – at an early age. Action is urgently needed to ensure that young people and families are better supported and that they have access to information, advice and guidance, and specialist interventions where needed.'

The Duchess wore a vibrant red shirt for the call, I'll update if it's identified. It also looks like Kate accessorised with her Daniella Draper hoops. The hoops were originally part of the shamrock earrings she wore in Ireland. 


If you would like to donate to Action on Addiction or find out more about the range of supports they offer please click here.

20 comments:

  1. The Lady in red to the rescue. Never was support for those suffering with addiction needed more. People cantget to meetings and their support networks. People unfortunately are drinking more and taking more pills for anxiety, depression ect. Yet again the Duchess shines her light on a very worthy cause. Both her and her husband seem to know exactly where they are needed most. They are the very best of British.

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    1. So true on all counts! Bravo Will & Kate! :)

      Becca USA

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  2. So even though both her and William are doing these virtual visits and looking drwssed up I have to wonder if they are wearing sweat pants or leggings.

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  3. Great to see the Duchess interacting with the participants today. She is very sweet. a lcoley post. Thanks Charlotte, I want o encourage you for all the great work you have done in the past.

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  4. Valerie in Arizona9 June 2020 at 14:52

    I can't help thinking that after all of these Zoom calls, K & W's list of places to visit is getting longer and longer :) I wonder if these calls are showing them the work ahead, the boots on the ground follow ups that they will want to/be expected to make?
    Again, it's lovely that there are these positive community calls being publicized. So wish we could have that kind of representation over here in the U.S. but we are a much larger country. I can only compare it to someone in the Arizona gov't reaching out to we Arizonans....

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  5. The need for these programs could not be greater and so very glad they exist to provide support to people in need. I like that we are hearing more from those involved with and in the program. Very hard to believe that her initial work with Action on Addiction was eight years ago, the Duchess has definitely evolved these past several years; I envision these initiatives will receive her steady attention and will be her lifelong work in years to come. A very worthy cause and we owe a debt of gratitude to the key volunteers who help keep it that way. cc

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    1. Zora from Prague10 June 2020 at 21:42

      Well said, CeCe! Kate has definitely been making progress; looking back at her beginnings in her role of a patron for various charities, one can see the development. She was always sweet and engaged but has grown and become more confident.

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    2. Thanks Zora! Hope you and your family are doing well?! Enjoying these Zoom engagements with Kate, it has given us such insight to her. Was thinking, it would be great if somehow we could all Zoom on this blog....lol..it would be fun for a day!!! Take care. cc

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    3. Zora from Prague13 June 2020 at 22:30

      "Ah wouldn't it be loverly!" 😃 I love your Zoom idea for DKB readers, CeCe!!
      We are well, thank you, lockdown measures are being eased and everything is almost back to normal (although the normal is not quite the same as before). How about you? If you want, CeCe, here is my e-mail address - I'd be happy to hear from you. freiovi@email.cz

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  6. It is just so lovely to see her. Am missing the royal round :(

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  7. I rarely comment, but have really been enjoying seeing these video calls. I have often thought about how much they must do behind the scenes, and these calls show that they do have a connection with their charities and projects, which, to me, shows a lot of background involvement.

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  8. It is wonderful to see how hard she works for the people in need.She can only due so much, the willingness to extend ones hand only goes so far the people in need of help must also accept the offer of help and I hope they do. Nice red outfit,one can't see to much of it.

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  9. Thanks Charlotte for keeping us updated. I still check daily for your posts. Praying for everyone around the world to be safe and well during this time.

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  10. Cara, Australia9 June 2020 at 22:31

    Very powerful hearing Catherine talk about the establishing behaviours of addition - that we may not realise we are laying the foundations for something deeper. So many people I know (including myself) have been using alcohol and food as a coping mechanism and while we joke about it, sometimes I find myself thinking about alcohol in ways I didn’t prior to the Covid pandemic. Thank you Action for Addiction for all the work and support you provide.

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  11. even its virtual zooms meetings are so great i love the duchess addressing and expressing concern to the participants and those talks are encouraging ones bringing those people in mental health and anxiety these global pandemic is a encouraging one

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  12. Great work Duchess Kate, anyone out there struggling or finding it harder to cope. Pick up the phone or get chatting online. Strange times but clouds pass. I personally feel like the late Princess of Wales is guiding both of them.

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  13. Caroline in Montana11 June 2020 at 20:03

    though I do miss seeing her literally in action, there is something about watching her move about that I miss, I feel like I have not heard her talk this much all these years and I feel like it rounds her out even more, hopefully that makes sense? love her in red and love that they will be keeping up with all these places when they are able to move about freely again. such an asset to the BRF.

    with all the press for Prince Philips birthday and how him and the queen have been secluded together for what, like 2 months? more? I keep thinking to myself, I bet this is more time than they have spent together in...how long?? must be odd for her to have no engagements everyday, doubt that's ever happened, at least for this long, during her reign? sometimes there is a silver lining. hope everyone is staying healthy. thanks Charlotte!

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    1. Lovely comment Caroline! Great thoughts! :)

      Becca USA

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