After four years of fundraising, The Bridge Youth and Family Services will be opening the doors to phase one of the Youth Recovery House by the end of April 2021.
“Here we will care for and house people from the ages of 12 to 18 that want some reprieve from problematic substances,” said Celine Thompson, The Bridge Youth and Family Services executive director.
“Here we will support them not only to withdraw from substances safely; we will focus on treatment to allow them to work on their trauma, work on having fun with leisure and education and to just be safe.”
Thanks to funding from the provincial government, The Bridge is able to open five months earlier than planned and into a larger facility, where the final touches to the building are being made.
Now, 10 beds for participants at the first-of-its-kind facility in the Okanagan will meet the needs of youth struggling with addiction problems faster.
“Having it local means that our young people no longer need to travel four or five hours or out of province to get the services that they need,” said Thompson.
“Most of the young people that have had to wait and to travel would lose interest or get too afraid to access the services available. This way we can capitalize on any moment of courage at any time.”
Because of their age, the participants won’t need to stay very long. Thompson says that young people will only need to stay up to six months for treatment.
“To be able to intervene with young people before the addiction really becomes entrenched is key,” said Thompson.
“We can help the trajectory of some really chronic health and mental health issues that will just do nothing but grow and expand without intervention.”
The Bridge Youth Recovery house is still fundraising to open up its permanent location for phase two. In the meantime phase one will be open to participants by the end of April and youth will be able to take part free of charge and participation is voluntary.
For information about how to obtain recovery services visit www.thebridgeservices.ca