Why Georgia Strait

We believe that every client deserves to have a highly skilled, compassionate, and curious team of professionals to help them. We also believe our team must provide a very wide range of proven health treatments because, while some treatments help a lot of sufferers, no single treatment works for everyone. In our unique set up, we are able to offer the services of a large facility along with privacy and attention that you can only find in a smaller one.

Gender-Specific Facility

We found that allowing clients to be in a gender-specific facility greatly improves treatment focus and success. We also operate Sunshine Coast Health Centre, a high quality men’s health facility, and we built Georgia Strait Women’s Clinic out of our desire to provide the same advanced and specialized care for women that we do for men. Since 2004, our skilled team of medical and psychology professionals has cared for over 3000 men. We are a licensed and accredited residential mental health and addiction treatment program. Our philosophy is based on a non-12-step, meaning-centered methodology, which extends throughout our services including withdrawal management, trauma therapy, and PTSD treatment.

Our Philosophy

We are far more than an addiction treatment facility. Our non-12-step program methodology is unique. While other centres focus on abstinence or harm reduction, we focus on helping our clients solve the underlying issues driving addictive behaviour or mental health suffering. This allows clients for whom addiction is not their only challenge or who do not suffer from actual addiction, to get the full benefit of our program. 

  • Our Theory of Addiction 

    The foundation of our non-12-step program methodology for treating drug addiction, alcoholism, substance abuse, trauma, and PTSD, comes from Dr. Viktor Frankl’s proposition that the fundamental motivation in humans is the will to meaning. Individuals need to make sense of their lives and pursue a personally meaningful existence and when we can’t, we suffer real problems. In line with Frankl’s theory, we see addiction as a result of an individual’s persistently frustrated attempts to live a personally meaningful life.

  • Our Approach to Trauma

    The traumatology field is still in debate about what theory and resulting approach is most effective. For most people in treatment, exposure therapy is too destabilizing. We take a meaning-centered approach to trauma that accounts for all aspects of being a person – bio, psycho, social, and spiritual. We address a person’s particular symptoms from all these angles and help them build skills like self-regulation so that they may live a more fulfilling, embodied life that is meaningful and makes sense to them.

  • Addressing Food Issues

    Our staff partner with the client and their experience of disordered eating. Many of our clients are symptomatic of a diagnosed eating disorder but do not meet the criteria, which is a term reserved for an actual diagnosis made by a qualified mental health professional. We see disordered eating symptoms as an expression of deeper underlying issues, such as low self-esteem, perfectionism, impulsive behaviour, and interpersonal problems. Our approach seeks to treat the whole person, not just the disordered eating.

  • Principles of Our Therapeutic Approach

    Dr. Wong was heavily influenced by Viktor Frankl’s Meaning Theory and used ed personal meaning Our programs are based on the theory and practice of Meaning-Centered Therapy (MCT), developed by psychologist Dr. Paul T. P. Wong. Dr. Wong was heavily influenced by Viktor Frankl’s Meaning Theory and used personal meaning as a way to organize different therapies such as existential psychotherapy, cognitive-behavioural therapy, narrative therapy, and positive psychology into a unified therapeutic approach.  

Our focus on personal meaning requires us to make certain assumptions such as:

  • Our Clients are Whole Human Beings

    We do not treat an addict or an addiction. We treat human beings. We do not believe that a person with an addiction can be reduced to mere thoughts, feelings, or behaviours. As psychologist Jefferson A. Singer (1997) concluded, we must “take in the full dimensions of their lives – to see them as whole individuals struggling to achieve a sense of identity and community”

  • Our Clients are Growth-Oriented

    Our clients are inherently motivated toward growth where, if they can overcome barriers to the growth process, personal transformation is possible.

  • Our Clients are the Authors of Their Own Lives

    Much of our clinical effort is in helping clients take control of their lives, regardless of circumstances or personal and social limitations.

  • Our Clients are Not Their Problems

    Our staff recognizes that pathologizing addictive behaviours reinforces the stigma of addiction and disrupts our relationship with clients. Therefore, we refuse to treat clients any differently than we ourselves expect to be treated when seeking help.

With these assumptions in mind, we have designed a therapeutic program based on key principles of Meaning-Centered Therapy.

The Georgia Strait Advantage

We are the only women’s clinic of its kind in Canada, and this is just one of the features that makes our treatment center stand out from the rest. During your stay, you’ll also experience:

  • Medical and psychiatric teams who work closely with each client
  • An all professional counselling team with minimum of a graduate degree in counselling
  • Truly personalized recovery programs written for each individual
  • Comprehensive mental health assessment and treatment
  • Significant 1-1 counselling 
  • Individual accommodation including private baths and kitchens
  • Extensive fitness and recreation programs
  • Family counselling and virtual sessions for multiple family members
  • A high functioning and motivated all-female peer group
  • Long-term aftercare across Canada


Reach out anytime. We’re always happy to help!