Youth Detox opens in Kelowna

Young people and their families now have a place to turn when they are ready to stop using drugs. The Central Okanagan has been without youth detox services for over a decade since the closing of the Iridian Centre. The Bridge Youth & Family Services, in partnership with Interior Health, has now opened the doors to a 4 bed Withdrawal Management program for youth ages 18 years old and under.  

Program Coordinator Jamie McGregor explains that in the absence of this service, youth who wanted treatment had to leave their family and community to detox. YD33 will ensure that there is a compassionate, responsive and effective local option for young people experiencing problematic substance use in the Central Okanagan. “It’s part of an overall strategy from prevention and education through to harm reduction and treatment. A significant gap in service for our region has now been filled, “ says McGregor.

Young people withdrawing from a variety of substances will reside in a safe and supportive environment for 5-15 days. The program will begin to holistically address the needs of each participant with medical care and informational workshops along with individual and family counselling.  Community support planning will be a key component to helping the young person experience success upon discharge. 

The Bridge Youth & Family Services has almost fifty years of history in providing social services to the children, youth and families of this community and nearly 5 years of partnership with Interior Health in offering Adult Withdrawal Management Service and Adult Intensive Residential Treatment. “We have proven our facility to respond effectively and compassionately to individuals who have experienced, or are experiencing, poverty, addiction/ problematic substance use, family conflict, homelessness, mental illness, sexual exploitation, and physical abuse, sexual abuse, or other trauma, “ says Executive Director, Celine Thompson.  “We’re looking forward to extending this vital service to young people experiencing problematic substance use,” she says. 

Youth can be referred by their physician, counsellor or through service providers including The Okanagan Boys and Girls Club, and ARC Programs Ltd.  In addition, YD33 will be integrated and accessible through The Foundry when it opens in June. Individuals can also self-refer to the program; full details and referral forms are available on our website.


Media, for information:

Jamie McGregor

Program Coordinator for Youth Detox & Adult Supported Recovery



Celine Thompson

Executive Director, The Bridge