Safer communities, healthier lives

First Stop Drug Services

This service has now closed. Services in Havering are now delivered by WDP

About the service

First Stop & CAT is a welcoming open access centre in Romford for anyone experiencing difficulty with drugs & alcohol, including friends and family who may be affected by substance use issues. The service is free and confidential for those living in the Havering Borough and who are18 years old and over.

The service is for people from all backgrounds and aims to offer a culturally sensitive approach to all. We have a number workers and volunteers with a range of language skills and we have access to interpreters.

This service is linked with the Community Alcohol Team

We take into consideration all the factors that may make a person reluctant to seek help or advice, including those who:

  • have children and may have social services involvement.
  • have mental health issues alongside their substance misuse problems
  • are involved with the criminal justice system due to their substance misuse

Service users will have opportunity to meet with experienced drug & alcohol workers who can offer support, advice and counselling. The service is non-judgemental, discreet, confidential and free, empowering people to find workable solutions and develop plans to deal with their problems.

We offer a range of interventions and support including:

  • Counselling
  • One to one and POD recovery support
  • Foundations of recovery group programme
  • Detoxification (for alcohol users)
  • Needle exchange
  • Complimentary therapies: acupuncture and relaxation
  • Mutual Aid: CA  & SMART
  • Peer led support
  • Service User Involvement
  • Support for Family and carers who may be affected by someone else’s substance misuse
  • Gender Specific services
  • Translation services are available on request.

Support to access a wide variety of other valuable services is also available and includes:

  • Education, training and employment services
  • Benefits and housing advice
  • Residential rehabilitation
  • HIV/Hep B & C testing and vaccinations
  • Medically assisted recovery.

Engaging with our services may enable you to make changes that can have a positive impact on other areas of your life, including:

  • Physical health
  • Mental health
  • Financial situation
  • Legal situation
  • Housing situation
  • Social/family/relationship situation
  • Education & employment

Make an appointment

If you would like to make an appointment, please come along to our first contact sessions held daily in our drop in service. Please contact the service on the number below for details.

If anyone attending the service is on medication, it's advisable to bring details of this as well as details of  their GP, particularly if they are wishing to be scripted and are to be referred onto our prescribing service (partnership agency).

Make a referral

Referrals can be made over the phone, by fax, email or in person. If an external agency contacts the service asking to make a referral, we would send them a referral form by email/fax or suggest they ask their client to attend daily drop in service to make self referral. 

Can’t attend your appointment?

Service user can text, telephone, email  or call into service. They can just explain who they were due to see and when and we will endeavour to arrange a new appointment as soon as possible.

(if client is a criminal justice referral it is important they call as soon as they realise they can not attend and provide evidence of why they can not attend ,e.g.GP/hospital appointment letter, , as there may be repercussions of them not attending if on a DRR  or an arrest referral for Required Assessment) 

Other sources of local support

The service is located in Romford Town centre. Can be  accessed by numerous  bus routes . Romford overground station in South street is a 5 minute walk away.  Unfortunately the service does not have parking facilities, but the Brewery car park and Angel Way car park are a 2 minute walk away.

The service is located at the bottom of Romford Market place, a few doors along from Poundland, service is next door to Bridal Shop. The words Ballard Chambers are in large letters above our door. There is an intercom system.  The black cab taxi Rank is immediately outside.

Ballard Chambers
26 High Street
United Kingdom
01708 747614

24/7 help line: 0800 6525898

CAT 01708 757235

01708 745395

This service is now closed. Drug and Alcohol Services in Havering are now delivered by WDP

A warm Welcome from our Service Manager

Hello and Welcome to CRI Havering. We provide tailored support to anyone in the borough with drug or alcohol issues that they would like to address. The staff team here are friendly, experienced and many of them have been working for the service for a number of years so know the area and what other services and support is available really well. The staff are dedicated to supporting people through their recovery and enabling you to achieve your goals. Our volunteers and peer mentors, many of whom are in Recovery themselves, are a major part of the teams in both First Stop and CAT, providing invaluable support to the service users as well as the team. Our priority is supporting you to see your potential and enabling you to get there at a pace that suits you. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch and speak to one of the team about how we can help.
Lynsey Buckles


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