Marsh Volunteer Award with Addaction

Addaction is the UK's leading specialist drug and alcohol treatment charity. They offer a wide range of addiction services in England and Scotland, which are free and confidential. Addaction not only help individuals recover from their dependency but also offer support to those closest to them. Working with families and loved ones is a major part of Addaction’s treatment ethos.

We run this Award to recognise the volunteers who work with Addaction to help them achieve this and transform the lives of people affected by drug and alcohol problems.

The 2015 winner is David Lee

David Lee

During his time volunteering with Addaction, David has taken on many roles, the most influential of which is in educating people about Hepatitis C. He delivers a talk that highlights five key messages about Hepatitis C, which incorporates his own personal story. He delivers these talks to all of the groups in Addaction, as well as travelling to most of the Rehabilitation Centres and staff in his local area and also a Homeless Shelter. Dave makes sure that he revisits all the organisations every 6-8 weeks, to capture new residents that come in for residential treatment. Since August 2014 David has delivered over 30 presentations and talks, which has helped people to make the decision to get tested and then go on to make an informed choice about their treatment and successfully complete treatment. On average, David donates around 40-60 hours a month and really demonstrates his passion for Hepatitis C to be eliminated.

Dave is also the lead volunteer that delivers Multi-Aid Partnership meetings, oversees the gardening project and will help with anything if possible. Dave has to travel a fair way to arrive at Addaction to volunteer. He demonstrates great commitment, enthusiasm and really does make a difference to so many people he comes into contact with.

South West – Mark Merrifield

Mark volunteers for the mid-team in Truro, St Austell, Falmouth and Newquay and has a long list of accomplishments from his time with Addaction. He was the first to become a volunteer tutor for Addaction’s Learn My Way online training, he set up an arts and crafts group, supports the delivery of the service, he co-delivers the pilot Life Skills accredited course Life Skills In-Action and is part of the Like Skills presentation team in the quarterly review to the commissioner of the Drug and Alcohol Action Team. Mark’s skills lie not only in the running of the teaching groups, but also in understanding clients, recognising any fears they may have and providing a kind, friendly learning environment.

Through his journey with Addaction, Mark has developed his own education and training by achieving Level 3 IAG qualification, an Award in Education and Training, EDCL Level 2 and a Certificate in Education and Training (Level 4). Mark began his time at Addaction as a Recovery Champion and then progressed to a volunteer and it was through his commitment to his recovery and the service that his learning began. He is an extremely reliable volunteer and puts a lot of time and effort into travelling to and from groups, despite having to rely on Cornwall’s public transport system which is not the most efficient.

North and West – Alexia Zavros

Alexia supports Liverpool Young Addaction by supporting the group sessions in schools and recently has begun to deliver sessions on her own, demonstrating how far she has come as a volunteer. She is very supportive of the young people and has a very approachable manner, she has built up a good relationship with them and they feel like they can approach her with any problems they may have.

Alexia always goes the extra mile in delivering Addaction’s services to young people in the community. She identified and arranged for the services to be delivered to young people who are in isolated areas. She also supports the new intake of volunteers and promotes the volunteer programme to them with good effect.

Alexia always acts in the service users’ best interests and puts people at ease so that they are able to get as much as possible out of the sessions. She is easy for the young people to engage with but also professional and knowledgeable in her approach.

Scotland – Billy Connor

Billy has volunteered at the North Glasgow Community Rehabilitation service for over a year, since getting into recovery himself in the service and has proved to be an invaluable member of the team. Billy supports the preparation of lunch for service users utilising the food provided by Fare Share and ensuring that there is a meal for everyone at lunchtime. He also volunteers at the local North West Recovery Communities and cooks for the volunteers there and catering for events and meetings.

Billy is reliable, flexible and always willing to help out when others are unable to. Billy has a great sense of humour and works well with everyone. He has also started volunteering at the Glasgow outreach services base. Last year he represented Addaction by travelling to Spain for a 6 week placement, working in the kitchen of a Care Home. He received a glowing evaluation and has returned once already, with plans to return again.

Pictured (l-r): Alexia Zavros, David Lee, Mark Merrifield and Billy Connor with their Awards


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