Monday October 23 , 2017

Gillian Ford

Gillian is an experienced family worker with personal experience of alcohol and drug dependency in her own family.

She began her career with a bank in the City of London before changing direction to work firstly, with young people at risk of offending, and later with a drug and alcohol service for families.

“Discovering that someone I loved had an alcohol problem was like finding myself in a parallel universe. This motivated me to seek help for myself which was invaluable. Eventually I began helping other families.

“My own life had been affected by my partners’ alcohol problem and later, my own child’s drug use. (My child has been clean and sober now for several years). Learning how to be safe and well yourself whilst also understanding and learning about a loved one’s struggles is a balancing act”.

“It is amazing how a few simple changes in how you deal with the problems of other people who are close to you can change your own life. It can be empowering and uplifting”.

“My experience led me into volunteering with organisations with a family focus, and then to develop my own professional skills.”

Gillian’s experience and skills:

  • Banking (City of London) administration and credit control.
  • Life and Social Skills training for Young People (Commissioned by Manpower Services Commission)
  • Volunteered on helpline for families of people who have an alcohol or cocaine problem
  • Morley College Access Course in Social Psychology, Anthropology and Social Science
  • Two years at Roehampton Institute (Psychology and Counselling)
  • Two years at Croydon Alcohol Counselling Service
  • Alcohol and drug rehabilitation key and group worker
  • Facilitator in guided meditation and relaxation on Retreats
  • Speaker on the effects on the family of addiction
  • Businesswoman: set up a small business on her own.

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