Rough Sleeper Drug and Alcohol Team

We are a multi-disciplinary team of practitioners who specialise in engaging service users who have drug and alcohol issues and experience challenges in engaging with mainstream addiction services. 

We work in the Greater Manchester boroughs of Bolton and Salford. Our teams consist of Consultant Psychiatrists, Neuropsychologists, Recover Coordinators, Non-Medical Prescribers, Mental Health Nurses, Health Care Assistants and Assertive Outreach Workers.

Who we work with

We work with rough sleepers and people at risk of rough sleeping. They will be experiencing drug and/or alcohol issues alongside a number of co-occurring needs such as:

  • Poor physical or mental health. 
  • Offending behaviours.
  • Social isolation.
  • Safeguarding issues.
  • History of trauma.
  • High risk/chaotic poly drug use.
  • A lack of appropriate natural support.

What we offer

We use a trauma informed assertive outreach approach to overcome barriers to individuals accessing treatment services. Key aspects of our work are:

Pre-engagement and outreach

  • We recognise that many people who are rough sleeping have had traumatic histories, and that this can make it hard for them to trust others and in turn may prevent them accessing treatment services. Alongside our partners Big Life, we work flexibly and to the service user’s pace to build a therapeutic relationship and rapport. This increases the chance of engagement in assessment and treatment. 
  • We adopt an ‘assertive outreach’ approach, recognising that people who sleep rough are unlikely to attend appointments in a clinic setting. We attend homeless support services, hostels and emergency accommodation for ‘drop-in’ clinics.

Engagement and assessment

  • We conduct assessments in accessible venues to understand the person’s current needs and to understand their personal history, and the overall impact on their life. 
  • We provide harm reduction advice and information and offer BBV testing, access to naloxone peer to peer training and needle exchange services. 
  • We offer access to medical appointments to explore substitute prescribing, assessment for detox and rehabilitation services and support to access mainstream treatment services. 
  • We have a dedicated non medical prescriber and consultants who will engage with clients on an outreach basis. We have specialist Mental Health practitioners who assess and support service users into mainstream Mental Health services.
  • We provide access to Neuropsychology who can assess for cognitive impairment and Alcohol Related Brain Injury.

Consultation and staff support

  • For people who are already in substance misuse and mental health services, we offer ongoing support should be provided by their current teams. However, we can liaise with these teams, offer a period of joint-working and provide consultation/ advice in order to help people stay engaged with services. 
  • We provide regular staff group reflective practice and individual staff support/supervision sessions. 
  • We deliver a programme of staff training on topics pertinent to homelessness, mental health and substance misuse. 
  • We participate in key homelessness multi-agency meetings in the borough, contributing expertise from a substance misuse and homelessness health perspective.
  • We attend and contribute to key professional meetings including safeguarding, child protection, MARAC, Mental Health inpatient ward rounds, CPA reviews, acute hospital discharge planning and rehabilitation reviews.

What we cannot offer

As a small team there are some things we cannot do, including:

Crisis/emergency response. In the event of a crisis or emergency outside of core hours, please contact urgent care emergency services.

Accommodation. Although we work closely with the Local Authority Rough Sleepers Initiative teams and can facilitate enagagement with housing services, we do not provide housing ourselves.

Counselling/talking therapy. If someone is ready, willing and able to engage in counselling/therapy, then we can help them to access this.

How we get involved


To make a referral to our service please contact:
Tel - 0161 271 0058
Email -

As a patient

As a service user, relative or carer using our services, sometimes you may need to turn to someone for help, advice, and support. 

Find resources for carers and service users  Contact the Trust