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Substance Misuse

Drug and alcohol misuse pose a significant risk to a young person’s physical and psychological health and development. In particular the adolescent brain is known to be particularly susceptible to alcohol

Different people take drugs for different reasons. Some people want to experiment and are curious about what drugs are like, whilst others use drugs to escape social or personal issues. Some people try drugs because their friends are and they don’t want to be left out.

When some people take drugs they might experience a short-lived period of feeling happier, more energetic, more relaxed, more empathetic (in tune with others), or of unusual altered perceptions. It can be very tempting to try and re-live these experiences and this might lead people to continue to take drugs.

Young people who are worried about drug and alcohol misuse can contact Catch 22.  Support includes:

  • Comprehensive assessment and specialist care with planned one-to-one support and treatment interventions
  • Alcohol, drugs and sex and relationships education (SRE) workshops for young people
  • Consultancy and training for professionals working with young people using and/or at risk of using substances, either in-house or on a multi-delegate basis.


Using a single point of access, a young person’s needs are assessed and a support plan developed that includes shared goals to improve family life and supports building resilience. Young people are then supported according to their individual needs, such as through one-to-one work, drop-in sessions, peer support and awareness-raising training.

The team builds relationships with young people that seek to increase their engagement in diversionary activities, such as health based activities, DJ workshops, photography, urban dance and football, that support the reduction in the use of substances, promote sexual health and positive healthy choices.

Support for parents and carers

Recognising the important role of the family and carers in a young person’s journey, Catch22 in Merton also offer advice and support to parents and carers in a number of different forms, such as through training, awareness raising, peer support, group work and one-to-one sessions.

Support for professionals

In addition, the experienced team offers training and support to professionals working with young people across Merton. Through a commitment to partnership working across the borough, staff seek to achieve a seamless delivery for the young people using the service and their families.

Service user involvement

Young people are offered the opportunity to be actively involved in the delivery of the service, enabling them to participate in meaningful ways, such as through recruitment and volunteering.

The name C22 DiSC (DA EDGE, information, Substance Misuse, C-Card) was chosen by young people in Merton.

Referral options for this service

  • You can refer yourself
  • You can refer family or a friend
  • You can refer a client

Referrals can be made by completing the referral form and emailing it to

Referrals are accepted directly from young people, from parents/carers and from other people who are concerned about a young person. Staff work proactively with partner organisations across Merton to ensure there are clear referral pathways.