Welcome to our Stars national initiative

Young male sitting outside

We are a hub of information, guidance and resources on parental drug and alcohol misuse, and the impact it has on children and families.

Through our work we promote the voices of children and young people, seek to influence policy and practice, and undertake training and consultancy work.

Our resources

We provide a wide range of information and practice tools around hidden harm and have created a number of bespoke resources including: 

View our full range of practice resources 

Our policy work

Our aim is to raise the profile of children and young people who live in families affected by drugs and alcohol. We join with others to shine a light on these hidden lives and work together to bring about change.

Examples of our work:

I think you need someone to show you what help there is: We were commissioned by the Office of the Children's Commissioner to carry out research with children and families affected by parental alcohol misuse. The project aimed to develop an approach to discovering the needs of children affected by parental alcohol misuse at a local level and included a model for the mapping of children’s routes to help, a model of good practice in local arrangements for supporting children and families and a proposal for early intervention. The report, published in 2014, includes a children and young people’s version.

Download the reports

National review of young people's specialist alcohol and drug services: Public Health England commissioned The Children’s Society to undertake scoping research in early 2016, to understand some of the opportunities and challenges currently facing those now responsible for commissioning and delivering young people’s specialist substance misuse services and to outline some critical good practice principles. The published review aims to assist commissioners and providers when improving provision.

Read more about the review

Manifesto for Children of Alcoholics: We gave evidence at the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Children of Alcoholics. The APPG was set up to represent and give a voice to the one in five British children living with a parent who drinks too much. It aims to champion the cause of children of dependent and hazardous drinkers, conduct research, raise issues of concern and make recommendations to government and other policy makers. In February 2017, the APPG launched the first ever Manifesto for Children of Alcoholics.

Read the manifesto 

Watch MP Liam Byrne, chair of the APPG, and Children of Alcoholics blogger Josh Connelly talk about the manifesto launch below.

Parental drinking and its impact on children: We provided evidence to the Alcohol and Families Alliance Inquiry into parental drinking and its impact on children. While there is a significant amount of research on the impact of chronic drinking on families and children, far less is known about the impact of ‘moderate’ or ‘lower risk’ drinking. This project aims to address this by investigating the impact of alcohol on children across a range of drinking levels and patterns.

Read more about the inquiry

Lobbying for change: Alongside leading representatives from the alcohol harm reduction, children’s and homelessness sectors, we have called on the chancellor for action to be taken on the harm done by cheap alcohol.

Read the letter to the chancellor

Who we work with:

We work with a range of organisations focusing on children, families and substance misuse, including Adfam and Nacoa. We provide representation on The Advisory Council for the Misuse of Drugs Recovery Committee, The Alcohol and Families Alliance and host The Pan London Parental Substance Misuse Forum.