THE 180 PROJECT
The 180 Project is a recovery programme in Lancashire and is one of the first of its kind in the UK, turning recovering addicts and alcoholics into “athletes”, breaking the cycle of substance abuse, crime and prison to help rebuild lives whilst also aiming to reach those people who are at risk of falling into this cycle as early as possible.
Officially launched in 2018, the idea for The 180 Project came from Lindsey and Robin Middleton and a few other individuals who attended CrossFit gym in Clitheroe and who worked in the fields of substance misuse, the national health service, the criminal justice system and people in recovery from substance misuse issues.
It was recognised that an adapted CrossFit (high intensity exercise) programme, combined with education, mentoring and peer support, had the ability to give focus and hope to offenders in the system and those recovering from addiction. Locally, based at Crossfit gym in Clitheroe, The 180 Project creates a new community that is safe encouraging and accepting. Excitingly, The 180 Project is now beginning to expand into other local towns as the benefits of this model of recovery are increasingly recognised.
St James’ Church is a mission partner with The 180 Project, seeking to bring Gods Kingdom to recovering alcoholics and addicts.
A number of St James’ Church are involved in The 180 Project in various ways. Caroline Sagar has taken on a full-time role in The 180 Project and recently this has been extended with Mark Dyer becoming The 180 Project Chaplain to provide ongoing pastoral and spiritual support and give people an opportunity to explore the Christian faith. So far this has included running two Alpha groups for The 180 Project participants and volunteers. This is now being extended to run the Prayer Course at the newly refurbished 180 Project premises behind the Crossfit gym, as well as developing a weekly meeting there for prayer and meditation.