Speaker presentations

recovery festival

Day one, Housing

Dr Marcus Roberts, DrugScope

Marcus is CEO at DrugScope. He has worked in the voluntary and community sector since 1998, including eight years with a specific drug and alcohol focus. He was DrugScope’s director of policy before becoming CEO, and was previously Head of the Policy and Parliamentary Unit at Mind and Policy Manager at Nacro.

Outlining the challenges and opportunities for the housing and drug treatment sectors.


Ron Dougan, Trent and Dove housing association

Ron has been CEO of Trent and Dove Housing for the past ten years and has worked in housing in the north west for nearly 30 years. He was awarded the National Housing Federation (NHF) national leadership award in 2006 and Chartered Institute of Housing/Inside Housing chief executive of the year award in 2009 and was the first person in the housing association sector to be appointed to a Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) board.

Sharing examples of best practice from a housing provider that works closely with the treatment sector.


Bill Randall, Inside Housing/Brighton and Hove Housing Committee

Bill is chair of Brighton and Hove Council’s Housing Committee. He was the first Green councillor to be elected as mayor of Brighton & Hove, and the UK’s first Green council leader. He is an award-winning freelance writer and the founder editor of Inside Housing magazine. Bill is also a former chair of Shelter’s National Housing Aid Trust, and a former board member of the Family Housing Association (London), Shelter’s Public Health Advisory Service, Age Concern (Brighton, Hove and Portslade), The Campaign for Bedsit Rights, Shelter and Same Sky.

A local perspective on addressing the housing needs of Brighton’s growing homeless population with drug and alcohol problems.


Susan Fallis and Amy Webb, St Mungo’s Broadway

Susan is Director of Real Lettings and Property Services at Amy Webb is Real Lettings Manager and St Mungo’s Broadway.

Presentation of an innovative scheme that engages with private landlords, allowing them to rent to people in recovery without risk.


Jeremy Swain, Thames Reach

Jeremy is CEO of Thames Reach, a charity working with socially excluded people, many of whom have suffered homelessness, and providing them with a range of services. Jeremy started work in the homelessness sector in 1980, moving to Thames Reach in 1984 where he spent four years as a street outreach worker before progressing to housing services manager, then chief executive in 2001.

The benefits system, and the challenges for people looking for long-term stable housing.


Karen Biggs, Phoenix Futures

Karen is CEO of Phoenix Futures. She has worked in the voluntary sector for 24 years, firstly as a volunteer for a homeless charity in Bury St Edmunds then with Stonham Housing Association, working with homeless young people. As chief executive of Phoenix Futures, she has continued its growth from a pioneering residential service to a national organisation with services across community, prison and residential settings.

The view from the treatment sector.


Day Two, Employment

Annette Dale Perera and Alan Butler, CNWL/Max Glatt Unit

Annette is Strategic Director of Addiction and Offender Care for Central & North West London NHS Foundation Trust. She is a member of the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD) and co-chair of the Recovery Committee. She was previously Director of Quality at the National Treatment Agency (NTA); Director of Policy at DrugScope; a research fellow at the Centre for Research on Drugs and Health Behaviour (Imperial College), a coordinator of a community detoxification service and a practitioner in adolescent and drug residential rehabilitation units.

Alan is an NHS Peer Support Worker on the Max Glatt Unit and has successfully completed a university accredited peer mentor course at CNWL recovery college.

Employing recovery champions in the NHS.


Ben Willmot, CIPD

Ben is Head of Public Policy at the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), leading a team that works to inform and shape debate, government policy and legalisation in order to enable higher performance at work and better pathways into work for those seeking employment. He started his career in regional journalism and before joining the CIPD was news editor and employment law editor at Personnel Today magazine.

The need for a written policy on drug and alcohol issues, and creating the right corporate culture to implement it.


Martin Blakebrough and Rondine Molinaro, Kaleidoscope Project

Martin is CEO of Kaleidoscope, one of the largest drug and alcohol services in Wales, and one of the first services to provide needle syringe exchange and computerised methadone dispensing. The organisation has always had a commitment to harm reduction and developing a range of services throughout Wales, and Martin is a fervent advocate of effective drugs education. Rondine Molinaro is Service Manager at Kaleidoscope.

How a partnership with Tata Steel is preventing drug and alcohol problems in the workplace.


Catherine Sermon and Philip Richards, BITC/Freshfields

Catherine is Employability Director at Business in the Community.

Philip is a senior partner in Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, one of the world’s largest law firms, and a member of Business Action on Homelessness

‘Ban the Box!’ Why criminal record disclosure policy needs to be changed – for the benefit of employers as well as jobseekers.


Daniel Farnham and Lester Morse, East Coast Recovery

Lester is Managing Director at East Coast Recovery. He began his own personal journey into recovery in 1991 and has since had much experience with all levels of addiction and addiction treatment, from outreach on the streets to working within the prison system and residential rehabilitation. Dan is CEO at ECR. He has been in recovery since attending his first mutual aid meeting (CA) in 2005 and has been at East Coast Recovery since its formation in 2008. He is a key driver in the pathways to education and employment being championed at East Coast.

The role of social enterprise and the work that providers do with clients to ensure that they are ‘work ready’.


Selina Douglas, Turning Point

Selina is Managing Director of Substance Misuse Services at Turning Point and has had extensive experience in adult social services and health management. She has developed integrated substance misuse services, including leading on clinical governance in the transfer of social care and health responsibilities from the statutory sector to the third sector. Selina has been part of a number of national steering groups and has contributed to DH guidance documents.

The view from the treatment sector.


Don Shenker, Alcohol Health Network

Don is the Director and Founder of the Alcohol Health Network, which he set up in 2012, recognising that evidence based practice in primary health care could be used to benefit workforce and public health in the private and public sectors. With more than 20 years’ experience in the alcohol harm reduction sector as a policy analyst, Government advisor, research manager and addictions counsellor, he is recognised as one of the foremost policy experts on alcohol issues in the UK and is former CEO of Alcohol Concern.

On the resources available to individuals for monitoring their own alcohol intake.