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HomeNewsSupervised Consumption Site staff look back on two years of service

Supervised Consumption Site staff look back on two years of service

It’s been nearly two years since the Mobile Safe Consumption Site opened its doors in Grande Prairie, and officials with Northreach Society say despite an up and down 24 months, they’re proud to be a continued part of the community.

Between its official opening day on March 11th, 2019, and February 28th, 2021, the SCS has been used by 321 people, for a total of 17,499 visits. Staff have had a hand in 209 overdose interventions provided onsite, with 141 of those including oxygen use, and 57 taking advantage of Naloxone.

SCS Clinical Lead Tracy Pelgrim says she is most proud of the work they’ve done with referral services, with 1172 external, and 383 internal referrals to Northreach programs for wraparound support.

“Having that communication and that connection is what makes us so successful, and what has our clients keep coming back,” she says.

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“Our biggest goal is to refer clientele to different organizations to help them get their ID to start opioid dependency programs, detox, housing, or even supporting them with medical care.”

Pelgrim says despite a bit of a rough start when it comes to blowback from the surrounding community, she feels residents in Grande Prairie have at least come to understand what the program is in place for, even if they don’t agree with it.

“I’m a firm believer that it’s all about education, and people understanding what we do.” “We aren’t there just to have people come in and consume their drug of choice… we are there to get the things they need to get their lives back on track,” she adds.

She says trying to predict the usage over the next two years would be next to impossible, but Pelgrim believes that the next step should see the mobile become permanent.

“I would love to see a fixed site, where we can have more wraparound services, and more hours to help our community and our clients out.”

Zero substance use-related deaths have occurred on-site since the SCS opened its doors to those looking for help.

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