On Tuesday 1st July, The Duchess of Cambridge will visit Blessed Sacrament School to see the progression of M-PACT Plus, a school based project which addresses addiction in families. The project was launched in Manchester in 2013 by Her Royal Highness and the comedian John Bishop.
The project, which is funded by the Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry, is also funded by Comic Relief who are also working closely with Place2Be and Action on Addiction to deliver the programme. M-PACT Plus provides early support for school children affected by a parents drug or alcohol misuse. The programme combines Place2Be‘s in-school counselling for children and parents with the expertise of Action on Addiction.
The Duchess of Cambridge will meet project co-ordinators and school head teachers to gain a real insight into the progress made since its launch last year, across all four project sites in Sunderland, Manchester, Essex and London. Catherine will then join a counselling session before joining John Bishop to meet M-PACT Plus practitioners, supporters and members of the Blessed Sacrament School community. Both will then hear speeches from a selection of people there.
M-PACT Plus is an initiative to support children, parents and families affected by parental alcohol or drug misuse and the project involves training school staff to identify children affected by a parent’s misuse of these substances. The deliverance of the project in schools is down to two charities of which the Duchess is Patron of, children’s mental health charity Place2Be and Action on Addiction, which is one of the UK’s leading voices on addiction.
The combined expertise of these two charities will help vulnerable families tackle the impact of drug and alcohol misuse on children. By identifying these issues in children in school, it aims to develop the children’s resilience, improve communications in families and equip them with coping strategies.
The project, which at the minute is being run as a pilot just to provide an indication as to how the school based intervention, may be delivered on a larger scale so that more of the three million children living with these problems receive the support they need. The project is already being evaluated to inform future, larger scale delivery of the programme in schools.
It appears that the Duchess of Cambridge is taking part in a lot more solo engagements as her overall engagement count keeps growing. Her most recent solo engagement was to Bletchley Park where she got the chance to see what work her Grandmother did during the Second World War.
Photo Credit: Governor General New Zealand