Charity holds community open day in Mile End

Former drug and alcohol addicts came together at a special open day to celebrate getting their lives back on track.

About 100 members, volunteers and supporters of East End-based charity Friends Together met at Mile End Park on Saturday to give speeches, read out poetry and play music.

Pharmacist Chris Okworu, who founded the charity two years ago, said: “The atmosphere really was electric. People spoke about what it was like being on drugs and how they got out of it. I’ve seen a lot of lives changed.”

Doctors, social workers and counsellors are among the volunteers keeping the charity running and food, accommodation advice, counselling and activities are offered.

Mr Okworu, who is based in Mile End and is also a minister, added: “I meet a lot of addicts at the pharmacy. Mile End has a drug problem but we see huge changes when we give them counselling, discipline and encouragement.”

The charity works with many other agencies such as the Salvation Army, rehabilitation centres and is now forging links with the police.

Cllr Rachael Saunders, Labour member for Mile End East, also turned up to see the postive work the charity is doing.

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Food was donated from Lidl, Budgens and Tesco for Saturday’s bash.

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