Drug and alcohol workers come from a range of backgrounds, often having worked in nursing, counselling, social care, or the criminal justice system – a key attribute is the ability to work calmly with vulnerable people.
Another common route into the profession is through experience, paid or unpaid, and many organisations offer volunteering placements to gain this. ‘Experts by experience’ – people who have overcome addiction problems themselves – have become a valued part of the workforce.
Several universities and colleges also offer professional qualifications. A list of these can be viewed here.