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Wauzhushk Onigum Nation celebrates grand opening of new Migisi treatment facility

Press Release

From: Indigenous Services Canada

June 15, 2022

Today, the Migisi Alcohol and Drug Treatment Centre (Migisi) is celebrating the grand opening of a newly renovated and expanded treatment facility.

At today’s grand opening, Wauzhushk Onigum Nation Chief Chris Skead, past clients, and guests joined Migisi staff and the Board of Directors for a barbecue luncheon, ribbon-cutting ceremony and drum performance. In May, Migisi held a traditional opening with the Board of Directors and staff to open the building in a good way before accepting its first intake of clients in the new facility, which is nearly double the size of the previous building.

The expansion and renovation of the treatment centre supports culturally safe spaces where community members will get quality care that meets their needs.

Indigenous Services Canada supported the construction of Migisi’s new treatment facility with $3,429,202 in funding, which was provided in fiscal years 2019-20 and 2020-21. A commitment to value and use Indigenous healing practices in the treatment of Indigenous patients, when desired by patients, responds to Call to Action #22 of the Truth and Reconciliation Final Report.

Migisi runs a four-week drug and alcohol treatment program that is based on traditional teachings and prioritizes culturally appropriate care. In addition to psychological support and counselling, practices such as morning smudges, visits with Elders, drum teachings, sharing circles and sweat lodges support clients in recovery. The Medicine Wheel and 12 Steps form the basis of Migisi’s program, enabling individuals receiving treatment at Migisi to connect their journey in recovery to their lived experiences as Indigenous people.

Purpose-built for Migisi, the renovated facility has a number of design features that enable staff to better serve clients. Upgrades like doors requiring key cards for access, a designated area to store client files, and staff-only rooms make it easier to perform administrative work efficiently and provide space where employees can decompress. These changes mean that staff can be more fully present when engaging with clients to provide the best possible care.

Quotes

“The act of colonization through displacement, discrimination and systemic racism has caused intergenerational trauma for Indigenous Peoples. Keeping Indigenous care in Indigenous hands is an integral part of our work toward reconciliation, and we are so pleased to support the Migisi Alcohol and Drug Treatment Centre in providing a safe space for Indigenous people facing addiction to recover. The Government of Canada will continue these important investments in traditional Indigenous healing practices.”

The Honourable Patty Hajdu
Minister of Indigenous Services

“The process, the time and the work that has brought us to this monumental event has not always been an easy one, especially during a pandemic, but standing here looking up at this beautiful new facility in this location surrounded by water, it has been worth the wait, the struggles and hard work. And I can stand here knowing that for years to come, it will meet the needs of the individuals that enter our program, and we will be able to help so many of our Anishinabe people who struggle with mental health and addictions.”

Cheyenne Bunting
Executive Director, Migisi Drug and Alcohol Treatment Centre

Quick facts

  • The Migisi Alcohol and Drug Treatment Centre is located in Wauzhushk Onigum Nation.
  • Up to 14 clients are part of each intake. Both men and women are treated at the facility, but intakes are separated by gender.
  • While anyone is welcome at the facility, Migisi prioritizes individuals from Treaty 3 communities.
  • Migisi’s previous building was constructed in 1983 and was 509 square metres. The new building adds 345.7 square metres, for a total of 854.7 square metres of space.

Associated links

Contacts

For more information, media may contact:

Alison Murphy
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Patty Hajdu
Minister of Indigenous Services
[email protected]

Media Relations
Indigenous Services Canada
819-953-1160
[email protected]

Cheyenne Bunting
Executive Director
Migisi Alcohol and Drug Treatment Centre
807-548-5959 or 1-888-223-2284

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