Recovery Acres was in Metro News this week. Jeremy Simes interviews our program staff and describes a bit about how it works:
New Calgary women’s addictions & mental health treatment facility launches
Hearing, “Addictions is addictions and recovery is recovery,” never sat well with Janine Copeland. At the end of the day, she says, women are different.
On Tuesday, the Recovery Acres Society unveiled a new facility — called the Co-occurring Addiction Recovery Essentials (CARE) for Women — that aims to help women suffering from addiction and related mental health issues.
People who have mental health and substance abuse disorders are general diagnosed with co-occurring disorders.
Copeland, CARE’s program director, said women are socialized differently, and have different hormonal cycles and triggers. Women also face financial and access barriers, where there are few programs that offer child minding, she added.
“Everybody needs to have a tailored plan that’s going to work for them,” she said. “This program is structured to reduce those barriers.”
The program is an intensive out-patient treatment program, meaning women can continue to go about their daily lives while receiving treatment.
The facility includes clinical psychological assessment, therapy, psycho-educational programming and relapse prevention in two phases over three months.
The program was developed by Dr. John Streukens, a co-occuring disorders expert with experience in mental health and substance abuse.
Streukens said programs, like CARE, are especially needed, as the number of people suffering from mental health is “significant.”
“And the resources are being stretched dramatically,” he said.
Copeland said more outpatient programs for women are needed in Calgary, noting high wait times.
“We do have some residential treatment centres. They’re wonderful but they’re maxed,” she said. “I know it’s sometimes four to six months to get into those treatment centres, so the odds of them waiting that time, abstinent, are slim to none.”
Associate Health Minister Brandy Payne, who was in attendance at the unveiling, said waiting lists are an issue brought up by stakeholders.
“Long waiting times can mean life or death, especially with the fentanyl crisis,” Payne said.
However, she said the government will address health care needs based on what local communities require most, adding the province’s indigenous people face the largest gap for treatment.