Earning a high school diploma while recovering from substance abuse
Montréal, June 20, 2013 – Eighteen adolescents, currently in treatment at the Portage Beaconsfield substance abuse rehabilitation centre, were recognised today for their success at Portage Academy, the centre’s on-site school. Surrounded by family and friends at a special ceremony, five of these young people received their high school diploma, while the others were recognised for having completed their secondary 3 or 4 at Portage Academy.
“It took a lot of work to get this diploma and I’m so proud to have done it,” said Kayla, a Portage Beaconsfield resident. “It makes me really happy to be celebrating this success with the other residents who have supported me throughout my journey at Portage, as well as my family and all the counsellors and teachers here at the centre.”
Unique in Québec
Portage’s unique academic program, provided in each of its rehabilitation centres for youth, encourages residents to get their education back on track. The program is adapted to the needs of the residents by dedicated teachers, and is recognised by local school boards.
“The success that we are celebrating today is made possible by the partnership between Portage Beaconsfield and the Lester B. Pearson School Board,” stated Portage Beaconsfield Director Ernesto Felaco. “Many of our residents have struggled with school in the past, so we are very proud to highlight their efforts and how far they have come.”
Over a hundred and thirty guests were in attendance at the graduation ceremony, including Geoffrey Kelley, MNA for Jacques-Cartier, Máire Whitley, representing Francis Scarpaleggia, MP for Lac St-Louis, Wade Staddon, representing Mayor David Pollock, and Beaconsfield City Councillors Pierre Demers and Roy Baird. Lester B. Pearson School Board representatives Chris Fuzessy, Cyndy Finn, and John Brennan were also present, as well as Jean-Pierre Levy, SPVM officer, and Caroline Tison, General Manager at West Island Community Shares.
Since 1973, Portage has helped thousands of people to overcome their substance abuse issues. It provides a variety of services tailored to the needs of its specific clienteles: adults, adolescents, mothers with young children and pregnant women, and people suffering from both drug addiction and mental illness. Portage operates seven substance abuse treatment centres in Québec, in Montréal, Beaconsfield, Prévost, Québec City, and Saint-Malachie. Three other establishments serve the adolescent populations of Ontario, British Columbia, and Atlantic Canada.