A FOOTBALL tournament designed to help people recovering from addiction and homelessness has taken place.

The ‘Homelessness to Recovery’ tournament attracted teams from across the North East area and even a team from Liverpool made up of people who had experienced addiction and life on the streets.

This afternoon’s event at the Graham Sports Centre, in Durham, was set up by project worker Mark Tunney, is in partnership with sports charity Northeast Athletic, homelessness charity Changing lives and Durham University.

Mr Tunney said: "We came up with the idea of having a homelessness to recovery football tournament every few months where we invite different teams from all over the region and the idea is to promote recovery from addiction, homelessness and social exclusion through sport.

"The whole purpose of this is to promote unity within the recovery community. This gives people an opportunity to interact with people who are on the same journey as each other. It makes them feel accepted."

Manager of the recovery sports charity, Northeast Athletic, David MacCormak said: "This is massive for a lot of them. It’s the only chance they get to interact with each other and make new friends and actually feel like they belong somewhere."

Player Kenny Andrew added: "I’ve been coming here for the last ten years and I participate because it gives all the lads here who are still on the streets that feel of community.

"A lot of people who come here have low self esteem, and this gives you something to look forward to and the opportunity to have a laugh."