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Uniting over drugs

by: Leslie Bunder - Last updated: 2007-01-11



A Jewish community initiative to help people affected by drugs is to be rolled out to the Muslim community.

Drugsline, which was set up by Rabbi Aryeh Sufrin and is based in Ilford is to expand its counselling services which will allow it to offer the first UK crisis line to cater for both Jewish and Muslim communities at the same time.

The service, which started out and was aimed at the Jewish community has expanded over recent years to engage and work with all sections of the population.

“Drugsline has over 15 years experience of dealing with drugs and alcohol addiction issues," said Rabbi Sufrin. "This proposed partnership will not only add value to Drugsline’s existing work, but it will also enable us to provide bespoke services to parts of the community where drugs and alcohol addiction are often taboo, and little or no support is offered."

The expansion of Drugsline comes from a grant by the London Borough of Redbridge.

"This Partnership is an exemplary model of what is possible when communities come together in union, whilst simultaneously serving their community in a sensitive and appropriate manner," Redbridge Council leader Alan Weinberg.

Imam Haroon Rashid Patel of Ilford's Balfour Road Mosque will be working with Rabbi Sufrin in implementing the project to his community.

"We thank Redbridge Council for understanding the needs of our community and providing us with the funding to enable us to work with Drugsline to combat drug and alcohol addiction in the Muslim and wider community," he said.

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