Rideauwood’s Treatment Approach

With more than 35 years of treatment experience we recognize that there are many factors that can contribute to harmful use of alcohol, drugs or problem gambling, and that everyone is different and may have different treatment needs. We work hard to ensure that all staff are trained in a variety of approaches to serve our clients. Services are periodically adapted to provide appropriate treatment for clients matched to client’s readiness for change. Services are modified regularly to keep up with evolving client needs, research and technological change.

There are however, several principles we espouse that have remained steadfastly constant in our 30 plus years of operation. Here is a summary of those principles.


  • All clients, regardless of their histories, their culture, beliefs or lifestyle, their personality, or their willingness to change, are worthy of our best possible service, our understanding, patience and respect.
  • The longer a person has been struggling with an addiction problem, or the earlier in life it began, the more sustained help they are likely to need to recover. We believe that addiction services need to be provided to most clients for as long as they are needed. We structure our programs accordingly. This approach is compatible with what is considered ‘best practice’ by experts in the field.
  • Where an addiction is present, there is substantial benefit in treating the whole family. We believe that by working with family members and parents for their own good, the person with the addiction problem has a better likelihood of addressing their own problem effectively. We believe also that even if the person with the addiction is unable to change, that the family dynamic can be healed sufficiently to lower the children’s risk of addiction in the future. This, too, is considered a ‘best practice’.
  • Regardless of what may have caused the addiction, it nearly always needs to be addressed first before related or contributing issues or at the same time as other issues. Once abstinence is being maintained however, we believe other physical, mental, legal, family or life problems will need to be addressed to ensure a long lasting recovery. We believe that recovery is not just about abstinence or reduced use of alcohol, drugs, or gambling behaviour, but is about improved quality of life.


Language of Service

Rideauwood is primarily an English language service agency; however, we do make efforts to work with clients whose prefered language is other than English. We do this through informal partnerships with other local community service providers. We will also make accommodations to work with clients who are hearing impaired.

Prospective clients whose first language is French are usually better served in the French language. Consequently, Rideauwood typically makes referrals to Maison Fraternité for clients who prefer to receive treatment in French.

Rideauwood does, however, maintain a limited number of bilingual staff in all of its programs, and where possible will make its best effort to accommodate services in French.