New Calgary treatment centre focuses on women with addictions

A new, intensive outpatient program designed specifically for women struggling with addictions will open in Calgary later this month and will be the first of its kind in the city.

The CARE (Co-occurring Addiction Recovery Essentials) for Women program will offer specialized treatment for women with addictions and mental health issues.

The woman-only program will be run by Recovery Acres and crews are completing renovations on one of the organization’s existing facilities to accommodate the new program.

Officials with Recovery Acres say they wanted to fill a gap in specialized care for women and help cut down on wait times for treatment.

“The first thing that I think this program will do is alleviate wait times for many women and at an affordable rate for treatment. This program has been designed all the way through to be accommodating and so women will be able to get into this program at an expedited fashion so they’re not going to need to wait four, six or eight months, which is sometimes the case here in Calgary,” said Dr. John Streukens, Recovery Acres Program Developer. “When people call and want help, they want help now. If they’re asked to wait four months, three months, if they’re asked to wait one month, the likelihood of that person wandering away and simply fading back into their addiction, the statistics for that go through the roof.”

Janine Copeland is the program director and says the program allows women the flexibility to work and care for their children while getting the help that they need.

“It gives women who have jobs, who have other responsibilities, time to come to treatment, do the treatment program and then get back to whatever their responsibilities are, which just makes it more accessible to a lot more people,” said Copeland. “Other professionals in the community are so excited and are already referring women here because we have the child minding service. They’ve already flagged that as being one of the benefits of our program.”

The program costs $1750 for three months of treatment but is free for those who qualify for financial help thanks to a grant from the Calgary Foundation.

Treatment combines psychological testing, assessment and therapy with 12-step recovery foundations and the longest wait for treatment will be two weeks.

“That’s one of the things this does is the longest, key word longest, is two weeks. For some of them it might just be a matter of days before the next program initiates up its start date and they’ll be able to be involved, however, they’ll be engaged even beyond that, when they call, they’ll get engaged through the in-take process and so even though they’re not necessarily in group, they’re already engaged with the staff here,” said Dr. Streukens.

The first session begins on September 12th. For more information on the CARE program, click HERE.

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