Actions and Commitments

Call to Action # 18: Health (18-24)

Breaking ground on Siksika’s recovery community

June 28, 2024

NationTalk: Over the past five years, Alberta’s government has worked hard to build the Alberta Recovery Model. This model focuses on giving people facing addiction or mental health challenges an opportunity to pursue recovery. As part of this work, government has added 10,000 new treatment spaces, expanded the Virtual Opioid Dependency Program, and has begun building 11 world-class recovery communities across the province, two of which opened last year.

Siksika Recovery Community – Northwest View

Partnerships between Alberta’s government and Indigenous communities are an important focus when fighting the addiction crisis. Of the 11 recovery communities being built, five will be in direct partnership with Indigenous communities.

The Siksika recovery community is a $35-million investment that will add 76 long-term treatment beds in the region. In total, these beds will support 300 people every year in their pursuit of recovery. After working with Siksika Nation on site selection and building design, the recovery community is now entering the construction phase with completion expected in the fall 2025.

Siksika Recovery Community – West View

“Every person suffering from addiction deserves the opportunity to pursue recovery. This milestone is something to celebrate as lives can be rebuilt and people can be reconnected with their family, community and culture. Our government is proud to work with Siksika Nation as we move forward with this recovery community.”

Dan Williams, Minister of Mental Health and Addiction

“Siksika Nation is grateful for this support from Alberta’s government. Countless lives will be changed because of the partnership we have built around recovery.”

Chief Ouray Crowfoot, Siksika Nation

Siksika Nation will own and oversee the operation of its recovery community, which will be open to both Indigenous and non-Indigenous clients. Clients can stay at no cost for up to one year and take part in programming that improves health, relationships and skills to support their recovery and help them thrive in all areas of their lives.

“Siksika is very blessed to receive a recovery centre that incorporates learning from our people and our Elders. This will provide incredible change for all our people’s wellbeing and lifestyle.”

Frank Sitting Eagle, family support worker, White Buffalo, and coordinator for Siksika Men’s Warrior Program

“This facility will provide a safe, culturally supportive environment for individuals to work through their challenges and begin their healing journey. What an honor it is to have leaders who value the importance of this recovery center. Recovery is not a straight line, but it has given me a second chance at life that I never imagined possible.”

Nicole Wolf Leg, member, Siksika Nation

Indigenous Recovery Communities are also being built in partnership with the Blood Tribe, Enoch Cree Nation, Tsuut’ina Nation, and one more location to be announced. By funding these facilities, Alberta’s government is filling a gap of support left by the federal government. Treatment at Indigenous Recovery Communities will incorporate Indigenous ways of healing, knowing and doing. Elders will play an important role in Indigenous Recovery Communities, and the design may also incorporate spaces that allow for integration of spiritual and cultural practices into treatment.

“Our work to build recovery with First Nations is an opportunity to build stronger communities and support reconciliation. With this new recovery community, Siksika Nation will help their loved ones who are suffering from addiction in their pursuit of recovery.”

Rick Wilson, Minister of Indigenous Relations

“As the MLA for two of the biggest First Nations in Canada, I am very proud to support the Siksika recovery community and welcome it to this riding. This is more than just a building. It is a place for people to heal and overcome some of the toughest challenges anyone could ever face.”

Joseph Schow, MLA for Cardston-Siksika

Alberta’s government is making record investments and removing barriers to recovery-oriented supports for all Albertans regardless of where they live or their financial situation. This includes adding more than 10,000 publicly funded addiction treatment spaces, and expanding access to the Virtual Opioid Dependency Program, which provides same-day access to life-saving treatment medication.

Quick facts

  • With a total capital investment of nearly $350 million, including funding already provided, Alberta’s government is building 11 recovery communities across the province that will be able to support up to 2,000 Albertans each year pursue recovery. This includes:
    • Five recovery communities being built in direct partnership with Indigenous communities;
    • Two recovery communities already open in Red Deer and Lethbridge;
    • Two recovery communities in Gunn and Calgary opening in the coming months; and
    • Two recovery communities in Grande Prairie and Edmonton are being planned.
  • Albertans struggling with opioid addiction can contact the Virtual Opioid Dependency Program (VODP) by calling 1-844-383-7688, seven days a week, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily. VODP provides same-day access to addiction medicine specialists. There is no wait list.

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