(This article is promoted by Orchard Recovery Center)
When Will T. came to the Orchard Recovery Center on Bowen Island, he thought he would spend 42 days getting sober from drugs and alcohol then go back to his life, managing sobriety on his own.
“At the Orchard, I had access to caring addiction counsellors and supportive staff. It was the perfect, tranquil environment where I could focus on getting healthy, but I had no idea of the challenges that lay ahead of me. The 42 days were just the foundation for a lifetime of recovery,” Will says.
Executive Director Lorinda Strang echoes Will’s experience: “The Orchard Recovery Center provides a full complement of treatment options to build a solid foundation for recovery. The goal for our clients is to leave feeling emotionally strong, personally accountable, and enthused about lifelong recovery.”
Heading back to his old life and the triggers that came with it became the next challenge for Will. “I was worried that I was going to be all alone, but the Orchard Recovery Center had programs for every step of the way. I realized it wasn’t just a place to sober up, the Orchard was going to be there the rest of my life.”
Not only did Will have access to weekly and monthly check-ups from recovery coaches, he could also call for support 24/7. “There were definitely a couple times in my early recovery where the Orchard was a lifeline that saw me through some very difficult moments.”
Will became a familiar face at the weekly meetings in West Vancouver called Friends Of The Orchard, and once a month, he would make the journey back to Bowen Island to take part in Alumni Days—a time for past clients to share stories, support those in primary care, and fill their plate with exceptional food, all while surrounded by friends.
In early 2015, work commitments moved Will out of British Colombia. “I was really worried that I would lose contact with the Orchard, so I stayed connected using their online support system, Orchard Connect.”
Launched in 2013, Orchard Connect is designed to give clients online support wherever they are. With access to 12-step support, daily reminders, discussions, and forums, clients can feel confident in the support the Orchard gives them.
I would start chatting with other alumni from around the world. We created our own recovery chat-group to help support each other. It was fantastic.”
When asked what was the most important thing about recovery, Will doesn’t hesitate: “It’s important to focus on yourself, but you can’t do it alone. It’s about having someone on your side in your recovery journey. And luckily for me, I have the Orchard Recovery Center.”