Community Mental Health & Addictions Worker Program

  • Delivery Method: In-Class
  • Duration: 60 weeks, including an 8-week practicum
  • Starts: Twice per year (April and October)
  • Credential: Diploma
  • Wages: Up to $20.71/hour

Are you looking for a rewarding career where you can make a difference in the lives of people struggling with mental health and addictions issues? Consider a career as a Community Mental Health & Addictions Worker.

Community Mental Health and Addictions Workers assist individuals with mental health, housing and addiction challenges by encouraging and supporting them in their daily lives.

The Community Mental Health & Addictions Worker program is unique, offering both theory and hands-on experience, and is a true collaboration with partners Lookout Emergency Aid Society; and Portland Hotel Society (PHS) – two agencies supporting persons with mental health and addictions issues. Stenberg’s Community Mental Health & Addictions Worker program includes a weekly in-field experience component, allowing students to become comfortable in the environment and apply their classroom learning in real-life situations.

Admission Requirements

  • Completion of Grade 12 or mature student status
  • Passing Stenberg College Entrance Examination
  • Passing Stenberg College Entrance Interview
  • Successful completion of a short written essay
  • Passing Verbal Test of English if English is a Second Language
  • Evidence of a minimum of 12 volunteer hours (community support / street level service experience)
  • A minimum of 2 years of sobriety for those with addiction issues
  • Completion of a Criminal Record Consent Form under the Criminal Record Review Act

Prior to Program Admission, Program Advisors will outline practice education requirements for the program. Upon enrollment, students will be informed of next steps and timelines. Non-compliance could result in program dismissal. Requirements for practice education placements include:

  • Acceptable Criminal Record Search under the Criminal Record Review Act
  • Proof of Immunity Status as required by industry
  • Acceptable Medical Examination Form completed by a Physician

Program Advisors will work with students to obtain the following:

  • Proof of 12 volunteer or paid hours in community support / street level service experience
  • Reference letter stating suitability to work with mental health clients

NB: Additional criteria may be required to fulfill industry guidelines; students will be informed in advance of any requirements that need to be fulfilled for placements

Financing Your Education

You could be eligible for Employment Insurance funding for education, government student loans, as well as other financing options; the Stenberg College Financial Aid Officer would be happy to provide further assistance.

Student Stories

Read stories from our students and grads about their experience with the Community Mental Health & Addictions Worker program at Stenberg.

Justine Flynn

Stenberg’s Community Mental Health and Addictions Worker program was designed, in part, to accommodate students with “lived experience,” those who have experienced mental health and/or addiction issues in their own lives. The program not only offers support and hope for those still suffering, but also to those who have suffered and now want to use their experience, strength and hope to help others. At just 22 years of age, Justine Flynn has more life experience than most people twice her age and enough heartache to last several lifetimes. After getting clean and sober three years ago, Justine wanted to “be the change” and offer support and hope to those still suffering. No longer defined by nor constrained by her past, Justine’s transformation is inspirational.

Justine grew up in poverty, surrounded by dysfunction and addiction. By the time she was 13, she had attended over 22 elementary schools and had never lived in one place for more than 6 months…growing up I had no safety, and experienced all forms of abuse.”

Justine fell into addiction herself, and from the ages of 13 – 19 drank excessively and took drugs on a regular basis. After hitting rock bottom on her nineteenth birthday, Justine decided to get sober and moved to a treatment facility, where she supported other women who were working to get sober.

Justine decided to enroll in a counselling program, and chose Stenberg because of it’s focus on lived experience. She excelled academically, and after completing her first practicum placement, was sure she had made the right career choice.

“For anyone who thinks there is no hope left in this world I dare you to spend time with people like the women I have met [in the shelter.] They are shining examples of hope, courage and strength.”

Today, Justine is a 22 year old college graduate with a purpose. “I find myself overwhelmed by choice, choices that I didn’t think I had a few years back. I know today that no dream is too big, no step too small. I can be anything and go anywhere if I set my mind to it.”

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