Dorset Christmas Support

From everyone at Reach, we wish you a peaceful festive season

We are open for referrals throughout the Christmas period with the exception of bank holidays. Staff will be working hard to ensure the usual high leave of care, but you may have to wait longer than is usual for a call back, so please be patient.

Dependent upon where you are based, please call the following landlines before you visit us:
Christchurch (East) – 01202 482908
Gillingham (North) – 01747 825872
Weymouth (West) – 01305 571270
Or alternatively please call the freephone single point of contact number:
0800 043 4656

Please be advised that all offices are open as usual between 9-5 but are closed for the bank holidays on 25th and 28th December and 1st January

Harm reduction

Please stay safe over Christmas and remember we are here to speak to for confidential advice and information around harm reduction including safer injecting.

Harm Reduction (drugs)

  • Start low and go slow. Start with a very small test dose and wait at least two hours before taking more.
  • Stay with your friends and do not leave anybody who is intoxicated on their own.
  • Avoid mixing. Every time you mix drugs, including alcohol and prescription medication, you increase the risks.
  • If you are anyone you are spending time with are using opiates, please contact the office for a Naloxone kit.
  • Always hydrate with water but don’t drink over a pint an hour.
  • Avoid trying drugs or new types of drugs for the first time this Christmas.
  • You can overdose on stimulant type drugs. An overdose can be serious and could lead to death.
  • Get help. Don’t be afraid to get help if you or a friend become unwell or feel suicidal after using drugs. Call 112 or 999.

Harm Reduction (alcohol)

  • If you are dependent on alcohol, stopping drinking suddenly is extremely dangerous and could kill you. 
  • If you are dependent on alcohol, you can cut down and gain some control of your drinking by treating alcohol as a medicine. Please contact REACH so we can support you with this during Covid- 19.
  • Try to space out your drinks, particularly in the middle of the day while keeping your drinking at the start and the end stable. 
  • Keep a drinking diary; write down each drink you have and find out how many units it has in it. Start measuring your drinks if you are drinking from a bottle. 
  • Unit calculators can be found online such as 
  • Once you have stabilised your daily intake for one week (the lowest amount of alcohol that holds off uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms) you can start to cut down slowly. It is generally safe to reduce by a small amount (no more than 10%) approximately every 5-7 days (or slower) once any discomfort from the previous reduction has passed, until you are alcohol free. 

Additional Support for you

24 Hour Support Available During Together Closed Hours:

Talk to Frank – – text support 82111 – phone 0300 123 660.

Samaritans – 08457 909 090 (24 hour)

NHS Direct for Health enquiries and advice phone 111 (24 Hour)

Accident and Emergency Departments:

Poole Hospital (A&E)
48 Longfleet Rd, Poole BH15 2JA Tel: 01202 665511 (24 hour).

Dorset County Hospital (A&E)
Williams Ave, Dorchester DT1 2JY. Tel: 01305 255541 (24 hour)

Royal Bournemouth Hospital (A&E)
Castle Lane E, Bournemouth BH7 7DW Tel: 01202 303626 (24 hour).

Yeovil Hospital (A&E)
Yeovil District Hospital, Higher Kingston, Yeovil BA21 4AT Tel: 01935 384355

Food Banks:

Weymouth Foodbank is open 4 mornings a week at sites across the town:

– Monday, 10.30 am – 12.30 pm
Westham Methodist Church,103 Newstead Road, DT4 0AR

– Tuesdays and Fridays, 10.30 am – 12.30 pm
Weymouth Baptist Church, 18 The Esplanade, DT4 8DT

– Wednesday, 10.30 am – 1.30 pm
St Francis Church, Merriden Close, Littlemoor, DT3 6SB

Christchurch Foodbank
Closed on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day
St Joseph’s Church, 67 Purewell, Christchurch, BH23 1EH Tel: 07587 371088

Tuesdays, 10am – 12pm
Thursdays, 11am – 1pm
Fridays, 2pm – 4pm

Gillingham Foodbank
Closed on Boxing Day Bank Holiday, New Year’s Eve and Monday 4th January

The Old Library, 6 Station Road, Gillingham, SP8 4PY Tel: 01747 825611.

Open Monday 21st December, Thursday 24th December.
Opening hours are 10am until 12noon

Family Support (Dorset & National)

We have put together a list of support organisations for families which operate in Dorset and also some national online support which can be accessed anytime over the Christmas period. Please see the Group Timetable which is part of our service user Newsletter HERE.

Addiction Helper
Online – to access online chat support or 0800 024 1455

Group Support:

Parenting Group
14th and 28th December 
7.45pm – 8.45pm on Zoom (invite only.  Contact your worker for joining details)

AA groups

Weymouth AA meetings


Weymouth Methodist Church, 103 Newstead Rd DT4 0AR (entrance on the right hand side of the Newstead Rd main building)
Time: 19.30 – duration 1hr 30mins

Weymouth Lunchtime Discussion 


St Paul’s Church Hall, 58 Abbotsbury Rd, DT4 0BJ
Time: 13.30 – duration 1hr

Portland Big Book 


Easton Methodist Church, Easton Square, DT5 1BU
Time: 19.30 – duration 1hr 30mins

Dorchester As Bill Sees It 


Tolpuddle Room, United Church, 49-51 Charles St, DT1 1EE
Time: 11.00 – duration 1hr

Dorchester Lunchtime


Cerne Abbas Room, United Reformed Church, 49-51 Charles St DT1 1EE

Time: 12.00 – duration 1hr

Dorchester Discussion Online


Dorchester Day Centre, Social Services Office, Acland Rd, DT1 1EE
Time: 20.00

Dorchester Big Book Study Online


Quakers Meeting House, 8 Holloway Rd, Fordington, DT1 1LF
Time: 18.30- duration 1hr

Puddletown Online


Mtg on Zoom – ID: 842 457 8886 Password: 015709
Time: 19.30 – duration 1hr 30mins



Scouts Hall, Stanpit Rd, Stanpit, BH23 3LY
Time: 19.45 – duration 1hr 15mins



Blandford Forum Parish Centre, Meeting Rm, The Plocks, Blandford Forum, DT11 7DN
Time: 19.30 – duration 1hr 30mins

Gillingham Online


The Old Library, Station Rd, SP8 4PY
Time: 19.00 – duration 1hr 15mins


The Old Library, Station Rd, SP8 4PY
Time: 19.30 – duration 1hr 30mins

Harm reduction:

Harm Reduction Drugs:

  • Harm Reduction Alcohol:

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