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Northern B.C. society looking to create sober living program

Peace Serenity Wellness Society, not Northern Health, seeking to build sober housing project in Dawson Creek. 

Residents Tammy Mazanek and Kelly Little met with Dawson Creek mayor and council at their Nov. 27 meeting, clarifying that their proposed sober living initiative is not affiliated with Northern Health. 

However, they are both employed with Northern Health as addiction program coordinators. Mazanek and Little said their society is the Peace Serenity Wellness Society, and want to create a women’s and men’s sober living home in the South Peace. 

“So, we’re not affiliated with Northern Health, this was just a vision that me and Kelly both had. We love working in addictions, many of our skills are in addictions,” noted Mazanek. 

“We’re both very passionate about recovery and I’ve seen continually people come through programs and there’s no aftercare - it’s that gap,” said Little. “They go home and there’s not that much support.” 

A letter of support from the city was requested, which the two say would help in their application for federal funding towards the initiative. 

“Our vision is to create sober living houses in Dawson Creek. The point of the houses is to empower and nurture individuals that are struggling with addictions,” said Mazanek. 

Skills learned in treatment would also be built upon, added Mazanek, helping people transition home, as the risk for relapse is high. 

The homes would be four to six bedroom houses, and a portion of the program would be peer-led, with lived experience individuals assisting, in addition to counsellors and other supports. 

“If they had something in between, where they could maybe possibly change their home environment, rebuild those relationships before heading home, that their recovery would be more successful,” Mazanek said.