Cash reward for projects

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THERE is just one week to go until nominations close in the Healthy Places awards, so if you know a project that boosts health and could do with a cash reward, now is the time to put them forward.

One group who will be applying for a share of the £8000 prize pot is the Free From Addiction Project, a Chesterfield based support group that offers advice and help on an informal basis for anyone battling issues around alcohol.

Gary Topley founded the group in 2010, after finding a lack of support for alcohol related problems in the area.

He said: “The Freedom from Addiction project is very important for the health of members, because you meet people who are in and out of hospital all the time because of their drinking.

“I met a young lad last week who had been in hospital four times this year, and he feels very sick all the time.

“At the other end of the spectrum, there are people who have beat the addiction who come to the group and help the others get through it.”

Gary has set up diversionary activities for members of the project, including the development of an allotment for their use. He would use funding to improve these facilities.

He added: “If you put these activities in place, it helps them build skills and gives them a sense of pride that they are creating something.”

For more information on the Free From Addiction project, visit The deadline for nominations in the Healthy Places Awards is December 9. For details and to download an application form visit