News & Events

2022 Year in Review published

in News
6 Dec 2022

Odyssey House NSW has launched a self-checking online tool as new statistics show that alcohol remains the principal drug of concern for clients seeking treatment.

The 2022 Year in Review for Odyssey House NSW show 40 per cent of clients report alcohol as their principal drug of concern, followed by 30 per cent of clients who single out amphetamines such as ice.

To be more specific, the 2022 data shows a sustained increase in alcohol, with a slight overall decrease of methamphetamine. This year’s data also shows a continued drop off for opiates.

Within our residential program, for 10 years in a row, the principal drug of concern remains methamphetamine (45%) followed by alcohol (34%), while in our community programs, the principal drug of concern is alcohol (41%) followed by methamphetamine (29%).

Odyssey NSW CEO Julie Babineau said the warning about dangerous alcohol consumption is timely with Christmas and the festive season coming up.

“Many of us can drink alcohol in moderation, but the reality is that some of us can’t,” she said. “Seeking support early is vital to prevent what can be catastrophic events on the lives of individuals.

“I urge anyone with concerns to use our tool and discover what they can do to curb their drinking before it’s too late.

There has been a significant and sustained increase in demand – overall we’ve seen 15% more clients in the years since COVID-19.”

Additionally, we’re seeing clients more times. As an example, on average, Community Programs clients came to 22% more sessions with us. We do know that this is very important for good client outcomes.

On average, 65 per cent clients coming to Odyssey have a recorded mental health diagnosis. There has been a sustained increase in anxiety while depression is dropping by similar amount. Odyssey prides itself in treating both addiction and mental illness simultaneously.

The report reveals three important events that occurred in the second half of 2022.

The construction of a new Family Recovery Centre at Eagle Vale began in early 2022 and will be opened by the end of 2022. Our first priority is to transfer families from temporary accommodation to the new Family Recovery Centre and the plan is to begin accepting external admissions in early 2023.

“This new centre will allow us to support twice as many families through our Parent’s and Children’s Program and establish Odyssey as a centre of excellence in reconnecting families,” Ms Babineau said.

The second was the commencement of the multicultural services previously delivered by the Drug and Alcohol Multicultural Education Centre (DAMEC) in Blacktown and Liverpool.

The service caters to Cultural and Linguistic Diverse (CALD) communities across western and south-western Sydney and will operate under the name of ‘Odyssey Multicultural Programs’.

Odyssey House NSW will be funded to deliver the support services for two years to June 2024.

Finally, the NSW Government announced a four-year $500 million investment into alcohol and other drugs services in response to the Ice Inquiry recommendations.

“This substantial investment will deliver positive outcomes for priority populations, particularly Aboriginal people and communities, people in regional and rural NSW, families and young people,” Ms Babineau said.

“This money is a significant boost to our sector, and we are optimistic that Odyssey House NSW may be able to play a part in this significant initiative.”