About Portage


Helping thousands of people overcome substance abuse

Montréal, February 11, 2013 – A fortieth anniversary is a momentous occasion for any organisation, but forty years of helping people overcome substance abuse to once again become productive members of society is a real cause for celebration. This week, Portage is proud to be celebrating this contribution to society with current residents and graduates from over the years.

“Portage has changed my life and helped me find myself,” says Olivier Fournel, who completed the residential phase of his rehabilitation program a year ago. “I’m free from addiction now, have control over my life, and have good job.”

An official visit to the National Assembly
A delegation of graduates and staff members from several different Portage centres will be headed to Québec’s National Assembly on February 13 to attend a formal lunch with elected officials. The graduates will also sit in on Question Period, during which Mme Véronique Hivon, Minister of Social Services and Youth Protection, will pronounce an official declaration to highlight the forty years that Portage has dedicated to treating drug addiction in Canada.

“We’re very proud of all that Portage has accomplished as it has grown and evolved over the past forty years,” states the president of Portage, Peter A. Howlett. “It means a lot to us to be able to celebrate at the National Assembly, where Portage first received its status as a Centre d’accueil forty years ago.”

…and festivities at the very first Portage centre at lac Écho

On February 14, over three hundred staff members, residents, board members, and friends of Portage will gather at the site where Portage established its first rehabilitation centre in 1973. At that time, Portage lac Écho opened its doors to a dozen people who wanted to change their lives. Forty years later, this centre, located in the Laurentian mountains, is able to provide drug rehabilitation therapy to 130 residents at a time (ninety adults and forty youth).

“We are pleased to welcome the residents from the other Portage centres in Québec to lac Écho,” states François Bourdon, director of Portage lac Écho. “Portage’s treatment program has evolved over the years to become a profoundly humane therapeutic process, based on mutual support and sharing. As we listen to the testimonials of Portage graduates from every decade, we will celebrate the history of Portage, and how it has been turning people’s lives around for the past four decades.”

About Portage

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. Two other establishments serve the adolescent populations of Ontario and Atlantic Canada.

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