Through these separate campuses for young men and women, we offer comprehensive and evidence-based programming to address the unique needs of each individual we serve. Modalities include individual therapy, group counselling, academic programming, therapeutic recreation and psychiatric support.
Within a harm reduction context, client safety is our top priority. Therefore, our residential treatment facilities operate as 100% substance-free environments (including tobacco products). NOTE: Nicotine Replacement Therapies (NRTs) and smoking cessation programming is provided. For pregnant youth and those under 18 years of age, NRTs may not be provided without specific medical consent.
Adolescent Community Reinforcement Approach (ACRA)
The Adolescent Community Reinforcement Approach (ACRA) is at the core of our residential treatment practice. Within ACRA, our clinicians use proven cognitive behavioural techniques to investigate and plan how pro-social activities and the reinforcement they provide can and do replace the perceived benefits obtained by the use of alcohol and other drugs. Clinical staff are trained and certified in a series of directive but non-confrontational therapeutic procedures designed to facilitate discussion, life skill acquisition and goal attainment.
In individual, group and family counselling modalities, ACRA addresses topics such as:
ACRA also incorporates four (4) highly structured sessions for caregivers, with a goal of enhancing relationship harmony and understanding between caregivers and their youth. Out-of-town caregivers can be linked by videoconference services provided by the Ontario Telemedicine Network (OTN) to participate in these caregiver sessions.
The ACRA model is one of the few that has been repeatedly recognized over a substantial number of years as being significantly more effective than other clinical approaches. It has been reviewed and endorsed by the Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse (CCSA) and the Center for Substance Abuse Treatment (CSAT) at the US National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA). The following quote is an extract from The Canadian Network of Substance Abuse and Allied Professionals, a CCSA initiative:
“In nearly every review of alcohol and drug treatment outcomes, [A]CRA is listed among the approaches with the strongest scientific evidence of efficacy; however, it is not widely used or even known by many clinicians who treat individuals with addictions. Adding to this disconnect between research and practice is the fact that three of the four commonly-cited meta-analyses of alcohol treatment list CRA as one of the most cost-effective treatments available.”