Mentally Ill Chemical Abusers
(MICA) Program

Helping men with mental illness to overcome substance abuse since 1995

Helping women with mental illness to overcome substance abuse since 2018

Portage’s Mentally Ill Chemical Abusers (MICA) Program is a residential drug addiction rehabilitation program for men and women suffering from both mental illness (primarily schizophrenia) and substance abuse, treating the two disorders as well as their interaction.

Through therapeutic groups and a supportive environment of peers who have been through similar struggles, residents work through the issues that caused their drug addiction problems and develop the skills and competencies to be able to better handle the challenges of everyday life.

Aftercare and Family Services reinforce the process by providing the client with a solid support network following treatment.


  • Eliminate abusive consumption of drugs/alcohol

  • Greater comprehension of mental illness
    (symptom management, medication compliance)

  • Decreased hospitalizations

  • Develop and acquire social competencies

  • Improve family relationships for better social support system

  • Social reintegration: back to school, work, or volunteer work

How does the program work?

Upon admission, new residents are welcomed by those currently in treatment, who help them understand how the program works. Under the supervision of a team of clinical staff members, residents support and encourage each other through the program, helping each other to acquire the necessary competencies and knowledge to move through the phases and eventually become role models to new residents. Read more


Typical Day

  • Breakfast
  • Morning meeting
  • Psycho-educational group
  • Seminar/Workshop
  • Lunch
  • Sport or cultural activities or workshop
  • Community groups
  • Dinner
  • Night meeting
  • Free time

Virtual Tour

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Who is this program intended for?

Portage welcomes men of 18 years and older who are addicted to drugs, alcohol or medication and who suffer from a chronic psychotic disorder (Axis 1 diagnosis). 

2. How long is the typical stay at the MICA program?

The residential program is approximately 6 months, depending on the individual’s needs, followed by a stay of 6 months to 2 years in a supervised apartment.

3. How much does it cost?

Portage’s MICA program has been made possible through the collaboration and the contributions of the EJLB Foundation and the Ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux du Québec. Clients only pay the accommodation costs.

4. Where is the program located?
The MICA Program is located in Montreal. Phone number: 514 935-3431
5. What languages is the program offered in?
It is a bilingual program with services offered in English and in French.
6. What is the admission process?

Admission to the program is voluntary. An interview is conducted prior to admission, during which the client’s needs and readiness are evaluated. It also gives the potential client a chance to visit the centre to get a better idea about the environment and the services that are offered.

Please contact the centre for more information.

7. Must clients be referred by health professionals?
No. Referrals to the program can be made by the clients themselves, their families or guardians, social service agencies, hospitals, community resources, courts, schools, and other treatment providers. The client must, however, have a medical team who will remain involved throughout the treatment process.
8. How often will I see my family?

Requests for family visits can begin after the resident has been at Portage for at least three weeks. During the fourth week, family members can visit the resident for 6 hours on Portage's premises. Following this initial visit, residents can leave the centre for 6 or 12 hours visits with their family every two weeks, accompanied by a more senior resident, until the resident reaches a certain level in their therapy where they are granted 24 hour visits with their families, without an accompanying resident.

The family visit schedule is subject to change, at the discretion of the resident’s caseworker.

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