Residential Program

Caritas School of Life provides residential treatment to individuals experiencing addiction concerns. This includes substance abuse or dependence issues, problematic gambling issues and hyper sexuality addiction. This is a long term (6 to 24 months) treatment program that consists of four unique therapeutic phases. This is a non-medical program and functions within a therapeutic community framework; legal and medical appointments are facilitated. The program offers intensive individual and group counselling, work therapy, animal therapy, life skills building and ongoing case management to ensure that participation in residential treatment does not interfere with pending matters on the outside.

Caritas School of Life provides an opportunity to heal, discover and rebuild.

Program Approach

Caritas treatment provides space for the individual to collaborate in their recovery approach. Individuals can pursue an abstinence-based approach and additionally have the option to seek withdrawal management support within the residential setting through opioid agonist therapy including methadone and suboxone maintenance.

Therapeutic Community Treatment Setting

Caritas Residential Program functions as a Therapeutic Community. This is a recovery modality which views an individual as a whole person, made of multiple components. This includes our physical health, mental-emotional health, cognitive health and our family and social self. When an individual is experiencing an addiction, it impacts all elements of one’s life. Therefore, to embrace recovery means to make changes to our life in its entirety, not simply abstain from active addiction.

The Therapeutic Community is a safe space for each individual’s unique recovery journey to unfold. In this space you will live among peers with whom you will engage in various therapies and activities. Through these relationships, therapy and activities, you will engage in the ongoing process of change through reflection, support and growth.

Residential Setting

There are two living settings that form the therapeutic community at Caritas. Both facilities are large home settings that provide comfort and safety. At each location there are meeting rooms, kitchen, dinning area, recreational space and bedrooms as well as large outdoor grounds.

Each location has its respective duties which residents will carry out and maintain on a daily basis. These include cooking, cleaning, and various other indoor home duties in addition to outdoor needs such as landscaping and animal care. A great deal of recovery is embedded in exercising these everyday responsibilities that revolve around healthy life skills, routine, hygiene and peer collaboration in maintaining the home.

Both locations are within the GTA and are in rural spaces. One of the locations is a working farm. Individual’s will move between the two throughout the course of their programming.

Program Length

Caritas residential program takes a long-term approach to recovery. Simply put, transformation takes time. A long-term program allows you the opportunity to not simply learn about recovery, but also to implement it and practice it in everyday life.

The program length combined with the various therapies provides sufficient time for healing and discovering change. The 24 months are divided into four unique phases.

Program Phases

open road

Time to See

Phase 1 (6-month duration)

Any serious process of the revision of Life starts with an awareness free of denial. The first step is to see with humility and truth. This phase usually takes place at the centre in Woodbridge where it is easier to address outside pending issues that you may have at the beginning of your recovery, such as pending legal matters, medical issues, etc.

people outdoors digging

Time to Accept

Phase 2 (6-month duration)

You begin to understand how living in the Caritas Community assists in your recovery process. At this point you will begin to make connections (painful at times) to your own life, setting off the growth process. This phase usually occurs in our farm community environment.

caritas sign

Time to Make Changes

Phase 3 (6-month duration)

Accepting the truth and taking responsibility for it will eventually open the door to the possibility of change. At this stage you are entrusted with responsibilities within the community which include helping and guiding those residents in Phase 1 and 2. “Walking the talk” provides you with an opportunity to practice honesty and consistency.

people gathered outdoors

Sense of Balance

Phase 4 (6-month duration)

You were once a problem person lost in “SELF” and “ME”. You are maturing, and you can start appreciating the selfless moments of happiness arising from simply helping and caring for others in the community – “WE”. Mistakes are made in approach and judgment which can lead to attitude adjustment and developing and maintaining a sense of balance. During this phase there is an additional focus on re-establishing a relationship with your family. Soon the road back home becomes a teacher. It is about the road and about becoming human. It is about rebuilding your soul in the right environment. It is about bringing together all the important ingredients to a seed so it can grow into a healthy tree.