Portage Recognition ceremony: A new beginning for 159 residents of the Portage program

    MONTREAL, Nov. 4 /CNW Telbec/ - Portage this afternoon paid tribute to
159 graduates of its various drug-addiction treatment programs. The
Recognition ceremony took place in Théâtre Maisonneuve de la Place des Arts
and was attended by the Honourable Pierre Duchesne, Lieutenant Governor of
Québec and by Portage President, Peter A. Howlett, and Executive Director,
Peter Vamos. The Lieutenant-Governor declared in his address to the graduates:
"We have reason to be proud of these people who manage to see hope after
having been through a difficult period in their lives. By our presence, we
want to show our support in their effort". Mr. Vamos commended the efforts of
the adults, adolescents and mothers who successfully completed their
respective programs. "It's always highly encouraging and deeply moving to see
families reunited with members who have overcome their dependency and can now
become participants in our community," he said. "We're proud of all our
    This ceremony also provided an opportunity to highlight the work of young
Portage graduates who took part in the It's time project. It involved six
youths producing a stageplay and taking part in each stage of the creative
process to help them apply, absorb and build the numerous skills learned in
the Portage program aimed at finding employment or reintegrating the school
system. Today each received a $1,500 bursary for their participation and
determination in carrying out the project.


    Since 1970 Portage has treated over 33,000 substance abusers and their
families, establishing an outstanding record of success. Portage provides help
for some of the most vulnerable members of the community: young people, the
mentally ill chemical abusers, substance-abusing mothers and their children
and pregnant addicts. Portage graduates can benefit from the services offered
by the MIRE (Mouvement pour l'intégration et la rétention en emploi) program
organized in association with Fondation Lucie et André Chagnon.
    Portage operates eight drug addiction treatment centres across Québec: in
Montréal, Beaconsfield, Québec City, Prévost (the Laurentians) and
Saint-Damien-de-Buckland (Chaudière-Appalaches). Two others serve Ontario and
Atlantic Canada residents.

For further information:

For further information: Colette Taylor, Senior Director, Development,
Portage, (514) 939-0202, ext. 123, Cellular: (514) 946-8798; Jade St-Jean,
Consultant, HKDP Communications & Public Affairs, (514) 395-0375, ext. 235,
Cellular: (514) 716-7530, jstjean@hkdp.qc.ca

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