Mentor UK to cease activities with immediate effect

For over 20 years Mentor UK has been the country’s leading voice in alcohol and other drug prevention. We are proud of all that we have achieved, in particular the dedication and compassion of our staff, and are honoured by the high regard that their work is held in.

We have worked alongside young people, their families and carers, governments, schools, communities, and other organisations as partners, and we believe that we have made a difference. As part of the Mentor International Foundation we have been part of a network that has worked across 80 countries, and has supported over 6 million children.

Through our programmes we have provided young people in the UK with the support needed to help them develop the skills and confidence to make healthier choices. Our groundbreaking work on the ADEPIS programme has allowed many schools to develop their own drug education and school policies. Teachers can be confident they are providing young people with the best possible prevention responses to substance use and other risk behaviours.

We believe that our commitment to delivering prevention work has changed the prevention landscape in the UK for the better. We have helped to shape national drugs policy, have made sure that decision makers take prevention more seriously and have changed the way that prevention activities have been delivered. We believe that this commitment to high quality prevention work is shared by others and that they will continue to ensure that young people receive effective prevention that is ethical and evidence-based, and helps them to navigate a changing world.

Despite our successes and all that we have achieved, the prevention field, and the substance use sector more generally, is facing major challenges.  Although evidence shows that substance related harms are increasing, funding at both national and local levels has been scaled back. As a result, local areas are struggling to meet all of their commitments and are having to make very difficult decisions about what activities to prioritise. An uncertain macroeconomic environment has also led to a reduction in sources of private, unrestricted, funding.

Unfortunately, despite the determined efforts of everyone concerned, for Mentor UK, these headwinds have proved too strong. Its board has therefore taken the difficult decision to immediately cease Mentor UK’s activities with a view to the charity being placed into liquidation later this month.

We would like to thank everyone who has supported Mentor UK over the last 20 years and wish the very best outcomes for everyone it was our mission to help.