Saint-Malachie, August 7, 2015 – Sixty residents from Portage’s addiction rehabilitation centres for youth in Québec, New Brunswick, and Ontario gathered at Portage’s beautiful Saint-Malachie location for the 17th annual Portage Olympics over the past week.
The annual gathering is a great opportunity for the youth from different parts of the country to come together and share their stories and experiences in rehabilitation treatment, all the while practicing the teamwork skills that they learned in therapy and getting some exercise. Teams from the different centres faced off in volleyball, ball hockey, flag football, soccer, and street dance competitions. Basketball was added to the menu this year, and was played on Portage Saint-Malachie’s brand new basketball court, which was donated by Opération Enfant Soleil.
“We’re very proud to welcome the youth from other Portage centres to Saint-Malachie, now the official site of the Portage Olympics,” stated Bruce Ferguson, Director of Portage Saint-Malachie. “With the renovations we’ve completed over the past few years, our centre is perfect place to celebrate this great event.”
Mr. Daniel Paré, President and Executive Director of the centre intégré de santé et de services sociaux (CISSS) for the Chaudière-Appalaches region, attended the event to encourage the youth and to preside over the medal ceremony.
“It’s so great to see these youth – who have experienced so much hardship in their young lives – having fun and making new supportive friendships that will help them on the road to recovery from addiction,” he stated. “We’re very grateful to have a Portage centre located in the Chaudière-Appalaches region, to provide our youth in need with a place to get well and to gain confidence and hope for the future.”
Since 1970, Portage has helped tens of thousands of people overcome their substance abuse issues. The organization offers a multitude of services tailored to the needs of adults, adolescents, drug-addicted mothers with young children, pregnant addicts, and addicts with mental health problems. It operates seven drug addiction treatment centres across Québec: in Montréal, Québec City, Prévost (the Laurentians) and Saint-Malachie (Chaudière-Appalaches). Two other centres serve the populations of Ontario and Atlantic Canada.