Keynote Presentation 1:

“Children who have not yet reached adulthood as affected by parental substance use and/or gambling: experiences and interventions (including whole family approaches) “

Professor Dr Michael Klein, Emeritus Professor of Clinical Psychology and Addiction Research, Catholic University of North Rhine-Westphalia, Cologne, Germany.

Professor Dr Michael Klein, Emeritus Professor of Clinical Psychology and Addiction Research, is a psychologist and cognitive behavioural therapist. Since 1994, he has taught clinical psychology and addiction research at the Catholic University of Applied Sciences Cologne and is head of the associated German Institute of Addiction and Prevention Research.”

Discussant for Presentation 1:

Professor Anne Whittaker, Professor of Nursing, Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport, University of Stirling, Scotland

Professor Anne Whittaker is Professor of Nursing and is a clinical academic in applied substance use and mental health research, based in the Nursing, Midwifery and Allied Health Professions (NMAHP) Research Unit, which is part of the Faculty of Health Sciences and Sport at the University of Stirling, Scotland. The NMAHP Research Unit is one of six research units in Scotland funded by the Chief Scientist Office (CSO), in the Scottish Government Health Directorate. She leads a programme of applied health and social care research related to the treatment and care of individuals and families affected by substance use, and previously served as academic lead for the ‘Families’ Research Theme in the Drugs Research Network for Scotland (DRNS). Her clinical background includes senior nursing and managerial posts in addictions, blood borne viruses, mental health and learning disabilities services within the National Health Service (NHS) and Local Authority Social Services. She was born and brought up in Australia, before moving to London and then Edinburgh to live and work nearly 40 years ago. Her primary research interests include interdisciplinary mixed methods research that aims to advance policy, service delivery and professional practice related to the care of parents and pregnant women who use substances and affected children and family members, with a focus on improving outcomes, reducing inequalities and promoting health and social justice.

Keynote Presentation 2:

“Strategies to both raise awareness (amongst the public, policymakers, etc) of the experience of Affected Family Members, and Overcome barriers (including stigma and self-stigma) to engaging family members in support: Policy, Practice and Research“

Dr. Sheila Gilheany, CEO Alcohol Action Ireland

Dr Sheila Gilheany is CEO of Alcohol Action Ireland (AAI), a non-governmental organisation which acts as an expert independent voice for policy change on alcohol-related issues. Over many years it has been highly active in ensuring the successful passage of the Public Health (Alcohol) Act 2018, the first legislation in Ireland to take a public health approach to the control of alcohol consumption with measure such as Minimum Unit Pricing, restrictions on advertising and labelling of alcohol products. AAI is now working to ensure the full implementation of the Act as well as advocating for a range of other policies in areas such as children who have grown up with alcohol harm in the home through its Silent Voices initiative.

Dr Gilheany joined AAI in 2019 and has extensive experience in policy development and advocacy. She has led a range of not-for-profit organisations in science, education and public engagement including the Institute of Physics in Ireland and the Irish Centre for Talented Youth. She is a member of the Public Health Alcohol Research Group established by the Minister for Health in Ireland to advise on alcohol policy evaluation research and is a Board member of the European alliance of alcohol policy NGOs, Eurocare.

She has a BSc Hons in physics and a PhD in astrophysics from Queen’s University Belfast.

Discussant for Presentation 2:

Dr Candice Groenewald, Senior Research Specialist, Human and Social Development Unit, Human Sciences Research Council, Durban, South Africa

Dr Groenewald is a senior research specialist in the Human and Social Development Unit of the Human Sciences Research Council in Durban. Although recently she has researched the impact of Covid, her main work has centred on research into adolescent drug misuse and dependence, and on how an individual’s substance use significantly compromises the well-being of those closest to them. Her PhD research investigated the subjective experiences of parents of adolescents with substance use problems, many of whom experience a lack of support, diminished hope and silent suffering. She has also researched the best approaches to support parents to cope with their own distress caused by their adolescent children’s behaviour, and how to provide support to the adolescents themselves. She has been a member of AFINet (Addiction and the Family International Network) for some years and is now an AFINet Trustee. She has also trained in the 5-Step Method, an intervention created to support affected family members; and she presented her work at the first international AFINet conference, hosted in the UK in November 2018.

Keynote Presentation 3:

“How do we help Affected Family Members – different approaches“

Dr Gallus Bischof, Senior Researcher, University of Lübeck, Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Ratzeburger Allee 160, 23538, Lübeck, Germany (CRAFT)

Dr. Gallus Bischof is a Senior Researcher, Cognitive Behavioral Therapist and Member of the Motivational Interviewing Network of Trainers (MINT). He is Chair of Trustees in AFINet and Head of the German Association of Addition Psychology. His experience in the addiction field started in 1993 when he began working in a rehabilitation facility for individuals with drug use disorders that provided family therapy. Since 1998 he is working as a researcher, teacher and clinician at the Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy at the University of Luebeck. As a scientist, he has conducted an RCT on CRAFT in Germany and has been involved in several projects on Family Members affected by Addiction (FMAs), including mixed methods research and a systematic review on Interventions for FMAs.

Ms Sandra Holmes, Founder: Families Campaign for Change in Scotland, Facilitator: the Midlothian Family Support Group for Family's Affected by Drugs and Alcohol, Scotland (Peer Support)

Sandra Holmes facilitates the Midlothian family support group in Edinburgh, Scotland, and also founded the group: Families Campaign for Change #DRUG reform, in Scotland. She is a mother of 3 adult addict children, and therefore has both lived and living experience of addiction in her family, as well as in the support groups that she facilitates. She has secured their first Families Conference at Stirling University in March this year. Families Campaign for Change has been in existence for 2 years now, and their aim is to create change in both services and drug policy in Scotland by having families' voices heard, and to help make these changes. It is families who are often on the front line: the first emergency service when dealing with addiction in our families.

Professor Dr Joël Tremblay, Department of Psychoeducation, Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières, Québec, Canada (Couples Therapy)

Joël Tremblay, Ph.D., psychologist, is a full professor in the Department of Psychoeducation of the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières and scientific director of the RISQ (Recherche et intervention sur les substances psychoactives – Québec) research team. He is interested in the role of a person’s entourage on the efficacy of treatment for addiction, including projects that assess the efficacy of couple interventions with gamblers and substances users. He also focuses on model performance for the organization of services and the assessment of population needs for these services. He is co-author of My Choices, a program aimed at attaining controlled used of alcohol, cannabis, and other substances that is widely used in the francophone countries. He also works on developing tests, such as screening tools (DÉBA-ADJ, DEP-ADO), and directs the development and validation of a battery used in addiction services in Quebec, Canada.

Professor Dr Richard Velleman, Addictions Research Group, Sangath, Goa, India/ Emeritus Professor of Mental Health Research, University of Bath, Bath, UK (5-Step Method)

Richard Velleman is Treasurer and a founder-Trustee of AFINet. He is both a practicing clinical, and an academic, psychologist; he has worked in the addictions and mental health fields in the UK for over 45 years and has developed theory and practice in relation to resilience in children who have lived within problem families; and in relation to adults who are Affected Family Members (AFMs), dealing with the addiction problems of a close relative. He is one of the developers of the Stress-Strain-Information-Coping-Support model, and of the 5-Step Method which was developed from that, both of which are used extensively with understanding and helping AFMs.

Other Confirmed Presenters:
Symposium on the Challenges in Implementing the 5-Step Method in different countries

Jan Larkin, Head of Psychology, Turning Point, UK and Head of Psychology for Addictions, South London and Maudsley NHS Trust, London, UK

Fionnuala O’Brien, C&F Training, Dublin, Ireland

Wendy Schaap, Preventiewerker, Project Leider Naasten, Jellinek, Utrecht, The Netherlands

Pauline Stewart, Executive Officer and Founder of Family Drug Support Aotearoa, New Zealand

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