The Prince Albert YWCA is now able to provide more support for those going through addictions treatment.

On Tuesday the provincial government officially announced funding for eight additional addiction treatment beds located at Our House.

Four of the beds are for people who are getting ready to enter addictions treatment while the other four are for people who have completed treatment and are in need of a safe place to stay.

Prince Albert Northcote MLA Alana Ross said the beds will be filling an important need in the city.

“We haven’t had access to beds in the past for this pre and post treatment for addiction, so this is a very needed and appreciative announcement and initiative that we have in our city now,” she said.

YWCA Prince Albert CEO Donna Brooks echoed some of Ross’s comments. Brooks explained being able to provide support to people who are getting ready to enter treatment is something which can be especially important.

“With addictions, its imperative, you have a very, very small window to get that person somewhere safe or they will use again, that’s what the pre beds address, they will be able to provide a safe supportive bed until the person can get in to treatment,” she said.

In regards to the post treatment beds, Brooks said they serve an important purpose as there are people who are leaving treatment who may not have a safe place where they can go and stay.

“They need a safe place to be able to transition too,” she said.

The funding to pay for the eight additional beds is part of $1 million which the province allocated in the 2019-2020 budget. In total the Government of Saskatchewan has provided enough funding for 50 additional treatment beds across the province.

Brooks said the YWCA already has people in the beds. She added they were happy to hear the news about the new funding as it in part helps to address the issue of homelessness.

“We were very excited for it, we knew there was need in our community, we knew we lost people through the cracks all the time in that lag, on both sides, both pre addiction, post addiction , where they just didn’t have that next step, or safe place to be,” she said.

(One of the new addictions beds/Michael Joel-Hansen)

(Top photo: Prince Albert Northcote MLA Alana Ross, left with YWCA Prince Albert CEO Donna Brooks)