Indigenous teen treatment center in Quebec revamps program – APTN News

Sep 06, 2023

Walgwan Centre went through renovations and reassessment before opening its doors again.

The Walgwan Center has been a place of transformation since 1996 for Indigenous youth struggling with addictions. Now, it’s undergoing its own transformation.

The center was formed as part of a federal effort to address the solvent abuse crisis. It’s one of the ten treatment centers across Canada funded under the National Youth Solvent Abuse Program. Located in the scenic seaside Mi’gmaq community of Gesgapegiag in eastern Quebec, it’s nestled among the woods.

A flock of dreamcatchers suspended in the lobby made by previous clients greets you upon entering and past clients’ artwork line the walls.

“There’s a piece of them that remains with us after they have journeyed with us,” said Walgwan’s executive director Pamela Charlong.

The center has classrooms, a healing room, dorms, counselors’ offices, musical instruments and art supplies and traditional medicines. But in late August, it was devoid of any Indigenous teens in treatment.

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