Addressing alcohol and drug-related issues: Reducing harm and supporting positive change.


Addressing alcohol and drug-related issues: Reducing harm and supporting positive change.

Northern Ireland singer and social media influencer Janet Devlin has given her support to ASCERT’s RETHINK YOUR DRINK campaign having overcome her own battles with alcohol addiction and mental health.

Janet came home to Northern Ireland recently to show support for our campaign designed to raise awareness of the potential harm alcohol can cause.  RETHINK YOUR DRINK provides information about the effects and risks of alcohol and gives people tools encouraging them to be more aware of the amount of alcohol they are consuming by taking an Alcohol MOT or visiting the Virtual Bar.  If someone feels that they need further support then we can provide this to them free of charge and completely confidentially.

“All of us experience some type of challenges or pressure with our own mental health at some point in our lives. In fact, one in five people will have a mental health problem of some description during their life,” said Gary.  “When it comes to alcohol, that’s a different issue because around 80% of the population drink alcohol and a significant number of those drink at levels which are problematic for them.  Although alcohol is more socially acceptable, there’s still a great deal of stigma around reaching out for help if it has become a problem for you personally.”

In her interview with Gary, Janet explained how when she was younger, drinking alcohol was a positive experience for her as it helped her to overcome shyness, however it eventually took a destructive turn as she moved away from home and was living on her own aged 17.  Her relationship with alcohol turned darker as she reached 18 and combined with several negative events in her personal and professional life, she admitted to relying on alcohol to cope.

“I always had in my head that when it starts being a problem I’ll stop” Janet explained to Gary “but of course, it’s not that easy when you’re an addict”

Gary said how delighted he was that Janet was on board with ASCERT and sharing her lived experience which will inspire other people to reach out if they need support and to help empower them to ask for help when they need it.

“Janet has been very open, honest and inspirational about what she has gone through personally and the challenges she’s faced with her addiction and mental health issues.  Her experiences will relate to so many people because they demonstrate how quickly things can spiral out of control due to pressures going on in people’s lives, whatever the circumstances may be, and the message that Janet expresses with such honesty is that no matter how dark and difficult things are, there is always hope and always help to deal with those problems and get your life back on track”

To watch the full interview, click on the link below:

Gary McMichael, CEO, ASCERT in conversation with Janet Devlin – YouTube

To access our RETHINK YOUR DRINK resources