About us

Alcohol Change UK is a leading UK alcohol charity, formed from the merger of Alcohol Concern and Alcohol Research UK.

Alcohol is a part of many of our lives. We use it for celebration, for comfort, to socialise, to wind down, to cope. We treat it differently to other drugs; it’s legal, socially acceptable, even encouraged.

Yet in the UK one person every hour dies as a result of alcohol. Alcohol harm – mental health problems, liver disease, one of seven forms of cancer, economic difficulties, and so much more – can affect any one of us, from any walk of life.

The harm doesn’t end with the individual; each of us who drinks too much is part of a family and a community who feel the effects too, whether through frequent use of emergency services, drink driving, violence or neglect.

We are Alcohol Change UK. We work for a society that is free from the harm caused by alcohol.

We are not anti-alcohol; we are for alcohol change. We are for a future in which people drink as a conscious choice, not a default; where the issues which lead to alcohol problems – like poverty, mental health issues, homelessness – are addressed; where those of us who drink too much, and our loved ones, have access to high-quality support whenever we need it, without shame or stigma.

The problem is complex, and so the solutions aren’t simple. But we’re ambitious. Driven by our belief that every person deserves to live a full life free from alcohol harm, we create evidence-driven change by working towards five key changes: improved knowledge, better policies and regulation, shifted cultural norms, improved drinking behaviours, and more and better support and treatment.

Our values

Truthful

We seek and tell the truth.

Compassionate

We care deeply about everyone seriously harmed by alcohol, whoever they are.

Ambitious for change

We are optimistic and determined.

What we do

Driven by our vision of a world with no serious alcohol harm, we work to create five evidence-based changes:

Improved knowledge

The more we all know about alcohol harm, the better we can reduce it. We want alcohol-related policy and practice to be developed on the basis of robust research evidence; new ideas about alcohol harm reduction created, tested and shared; and the knowledge base enriched by the experiences of those affected by alcohol harm. Find out more.

Better policy and regulation

The right changes to laws and regulation can make a difference to millions of real lives. We want to see a policy environment that prioritises the reduction of alcohol harms in all their forms based on robust and reliable evidence. Find out more.

Shifted cultural norms

We get people thinking and talking openly about alcohol to create more informed and balanced drinking cultures across the UK, with alcohol playing a less central role. Find out more.

Improved drinking behaviours

We work to help more people gain the motivation, confidence and ability to control their drinking, with less need for specialist support. Find out more.

More and better support and treatment

We work with organisations and practitioners on the treatment frontline to help build a vibrant and diverse treatment sector that is effective, properly funded, well commissioned and coordinated, and easy for people with drinking problems and their families to navigate. Find out more.

Our predecessor charities

Alcohol Change UK was formed from the merger of Alcohol Concern and Alcohol Research UK in April 2017. Our new charity launched in November 2018.

Alcohol Concern, founded in 1984, has a history of campaigning, working with the treatment sector, and supporting people directly. Alcohol Research UK (previously the Alcohol Education and Research Council) was founded in 1982, and has funded over 800 projects aiming to build the evidence base to reduce alcohol harm.

Our vision is of a world free from serious alcohol harm. Together we will work towards five key changes: improved knowledge, better policies and regulation, shifted cultural norms, improved drinking behaviours, and more and better support and treatment.

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Ac Lauch Report Front Page

Our launch report

Our launch report looks at alcohol in the UK today, and makes the case for key changes we must all work towards if we are to end serious alcohol harm.

Download the report (2.29Mb)

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Our strategy summary

Download our strategy (2.43Mb)

More on who we are