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Portage Ontario News - Fresh Start 2011

Fifth annual Fresh Start Dinner & Auction demonstrates power of investing in the mental health of youth

Portage Ontario News - Fresh Start Committee 2011In the garden of Dr. Peter and Mrs. Susan Schaal, 182 guests, including Toronto Chief of Police Bill Blair, gathered on May 31st for the Fifth Annual Fresh Start Dinner & Auction to raise awareness and funds in support of the Portage Ontario Youth Treatment Fund. This fund provides youth access to residential treatment beds that would not otherwise be immediately available or affordable to their families.  Through generous donations and auction purchases, the event successfully raised over $120,000 to give youth in need the chance to change their lives at Portage this year.

The evening included powerful addresses by a Portage Elora graduate and a resident, who spoke about their experiences at Portage. Caitlin, a graduate of Portage, shared, “Portage taught me that I deserve to be loved and cared for, and that everyone needs help sometimes. I owe my today, and my future, to Portage and to the Treatment Fund.”
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Success of Portage Ontario’s 2010-2011 Annual Campaign 

Thanks to the generosity of donors and the exceptional support and leadership provided by the Ontario Board and Campaign Committee, Portage Ontario is very proud to report that it has exceeded its annual fundraising goal of $300,000. Funds raised through the annual campaign support three main areas of need: the Portage Ontario Youth Treatment Fund, the Family Aftercare Program, and the Outward Bound Program.
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Youth an important focus in Provincial Mental Health and Addictions Strategy

Portage Ontario applauds the newly released Comprehensive Mental Health and Addictions Strategy by Minister of Health and Long Term Care Deb Matthews, which focuses on children and youth for the first three years and aims to support over 50,000 youth with quick and easier access to the right mental health supports.

“Portage knows firsthand that an investment in the mental health of our youth is a sound investment in our province’s future, so we are glad that the government is taking this issue seriously and putting resources where they are desperately needed,” said Jennifer Blunt, Director of Corporate Affairs and Development for Portage Ontario.  “At Portage, we see so many youth who would have benefited from earlier identification and interventions.”

 

PORTAGE ONTARIO IN THE NEWS

June 27, 2011 – Toronto Star
Reaching new heights on the road to recovery

It’s often said that the best things in life are free — like the smell of a pine forest after the rain, a sprinkle of stars sparkling in the night sky, an achievement that was only once a dream.

Sarah Connolly has seen how life’s freebies have helped “soothe the savage beast” in teens as they face their addictions and forge a new path in life. Connolly, who is Portage Elora’s new Outward Bound coordinator, is working with youth 14 to 18 to help them on their way.
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Portage Ontario News - Outward Bound Cliff
NEWSBITES

Another series of successful Outward Bound expeditions
Portage Elora’s Outward Bound Coordinator is headlong into summer trips, having gone on two canoe trips with the boys’ community and having just got back from one with the girls’ community.  Despite the heavier-than-normal bug population, the trips were a great success, where the residents learned more about themselves and about their journey towards sobriety.  A highlight for all was the discovery of some beautiful waterfalls, where the group took a refreshing swim.

Portage Ontario News - Outward Bound Waterfalls

Portage Ontario News - Canoe Portage

Throughout the program, I began to see that I was as valuable as anyone else. I have learned how to understand others and how to ask for help. I know that I can’t do it by myself, but because of the family I’ve gained at Portage, I know I won’t have to.
Cardier, Portage Elora resident

The Portage Treatment Program presented at Addictions Ontario conference

Portage Ontario News - Addictions Ontario ConferenceOn May 31st, 2011, five Portage representatives delivered a presentation entitled “The Portage Program: a multi-dimensional, strength-based model for the treatment of addictions” at the 43rd Annual Addictions Ontario Conference in Toronto.  Peter Vamos, Executive Director of Portage, Pierre Toussaint, Research Coordinator at Portage, and facility directors Patrick Culver (Portage Elora in Ontario), François Bourdon (Portage Prévost in Québec), Geordie Gould (Portage Cassidy Lake in New Brunswick) took the audience through the Portage Program and therapeutic approach, and then looked more specifically at the Portage Elora centre and how it is helping Ontario youth from all regions to overcome their substance abuse issues and go on to lead productive, drug-free lives.

It was the first time that Portage has delivered a presentation at the Addictions Ontario conference and the Portage team was very well received.

Portage Canada
The Therapeutic Community

By beginning a substance abuse rehabilitation program at Portage, residents become members of Portage’s therapeutic community. As such, they share their daily lives with a group of people who are experiencing similar substance abuse problems and who have undertaken to help one another overcome these difficulties.
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About Portage

Portage is a non-profit organisation dedicated to helping people who are suffering from substance abuse-related problems to overcome their dependencies and to live healthy, happy and productive lives. Portage is a vital and progressive force in the drug addiction treatment field in North America, with service centres in Québec, New Brunswick, Ontario, and British Columbia. Through drug addiction treatment best practices and the therapeutic community approach, Portage helps residents develop their self-esteem, confidence, and the competencies necessary to overcome addiction. Portage has been operating drug rehabilitation centres in Canada for over 38 years. Portage Ontario was established in 1985.

Read more about Portage’s mission, vision, and values.

INFORMATION

For admissions information, please contact our centre in Elora, Ontario:
Tel. 519-846-0945
Fax 519-846-5703
info_adoon@portage.ca

For the Portage Ontario Board, Campaign, and volunteer activities, please contact:

Jennifer Blunt
Director of Development
Portage Ontario
416-531-1333
jblunt@portage.ca

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