AFINet was set up in 2014 with support from a grant from the Society for the Study of Addiction (SSA).  

The small group of UK-based people who founded AFINet had been working in the area of ‘addiction and the family’ since at least the early 1980’s, and had led collaborations between the NHS and academic institutions in the cities of Bath/Bristol and Birmingham.  The group was known as the ADF Group (Alcohol, Drugs and the Family) and key members were: Jim Orford, Richard Velleman, Lorna Templeton and Alex Copello, although many others, in a number of countries, participated in and made significant contributions to the group’s research over the years. 

The ADF Group was primarily interested in research and its implications for practice; its research followed two directions:

  • Obtaining detailed information about the experiences of family members affected by addictive-type problems; and  
  • Applying this knowledge, both to help health and social care workers / practitioners respond to the needs of family members, and to develop a clearer perspective on theory, practice, research and policy in this area.

Creating AFINet as an International body to take these interests further was a natural next step. We used some of the SSA grant to employ Laura Nice to help create AFINet.

Some of the work that the ADF Group undertook resulted in the development of both the ‘Stress-Strain-Information-Coping-Support’ Model and the ‘5-Step Method’, and hence when AFINet was created, it also became the ‘home’ of both of these.”

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