SAINT JOHN (GNB) – The provincial government will contribute $485,000 through the Regional Development Corporation towards renovations of the Sophia Recovery Centre’s new location at 238 Metcalf St. in Saint John’s north end. It is a non-residential centre providing continuing care for women in recovery from addiction.

“The programs and services offered by Sophia House provide hope for those looking to live a healthier life, and for the families and friends who love them. When someone you love has an addiction, the shame, guilt, and powerlessness can be overwhelming,” said Arlene Dunn, minister of Economic Development, minister responsible for Opportunities New Brunswick and Immigration. “It is important to educate ourselves and realize that addiction is not a choice. If there is anything we could all use a little more of in our lives, it is education, empathy and understanding. Sophia Recovery provides that, by taking away the judgement, the stigma and replacing them with a safe, healthy, supportive place for women to flourish.”

Dunn spoke on behalf of Réjean Savoie, minister responsible for the Regional Development Corporation.

“Women who receive support from the centre will now have the benefit of a new larger location on Metcalf Street,” said Health Minister Bruce Fitch. “With 90 per cent of the women who engage in the programs reporting sustained recovery and other health and wellness improvements, we consider this an important investment given the widespread reach of addiction in the community.”

The Department of Health is providing Sophia Recovery Centre with operational funding of $465,000 this year, an increase of about $120,000.

The announcement of the new location was made today at the Sophia Recovery Centre’s annual general meeting.

The women’s not-for-profit organization hopes to be in their newly renovated home by the end of December and has launched a Buy a Brick campaign that will build a gratitude wall in the new building to provide an opportunity for members of the public and the business community to support the move.

“The Gratitude Wall will be our way of paying tribute to the community that came together to create a safe place for women to recover and be well,” said Julie Atkinson, executive director. “Although a number of partners and donors have already stepped forward, we still need significantly more funding to make this move. Our waiting list continues to grow, and we are not able to provide the support these women need from our current location.”

Sophia Recovery Centre first opened in uptown Saint John in 2008. It has since added locations in St. Stephen and Rothesay to meet growing demand. In 2022, more than 300 women visited the centre with more than 5,075 appointments made for counselling, peer check-ins, and group programs.

More information about the Buy a Brick campaign is available online or by calling 506-271-5278.