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Becoming a Golden Hawk means more than just cheering on our (really good) varsity teams – it means being a student who cares about your community, who works hard in the classroom, and who takes advantage of all the learning opportunities that can happen outside the classroom, too.


Held in-class in Kitcheneronline or through a combination of both, the Addictions certificate is designed for anyone who wants to build on their knowledge and skills in the field of addictions. Two required workshops provide a solid foundation of knowledge about substance use, abuse and addiction. A variety of electives allow you to create a program of study that fits with your career path and interests. Some of the topics covered in this program include:

  • An understanding of what an addiction is and what causes addictions.
  • Factors that can impact an addiction, such a families, trauma and concurrent disorders.
  • The various types of addictive substances and how they affect the body and brain.
  • Tools and skills that can be used in assessment, intervention and relapse prevention.

Upon completion, participants will be better able to assist clients facing addiction issues.

To complete the Addictions certificate, you must take a minimum of 84 course hours, including two required courses and 60 hours of electives. You can complete this certificate in as little as one year or take up to seven years.

You do not have to be working toward the Addictions certificate to take any of these courses.

CACCF Credits

All courses in the Addictions certificate program are approved for a specified number of continuing education hours (CEUs) through the Canadian Addiction Counsellors Certification Federation (CACCF). See course descriptions for the number of CEUs each course is eligible for.

For information about the CACCF or how to become a certified Addictions Counsellor, visit www.caccf.ca.

In-Class Workshops

Addictions workshops are also available online.

Required Courses (24 Hours)

Fundamentals of Addiction

Winter 2020

This workshop offers an overview of addiction and addiction treatment to assist you in developing a holistic understanding of the bio-psycho-social nature of this universal phenomenon. Participants will discuss key terms in the addiction field and be introduced to the theories pertinent to the field and the range of treatment options available to assist those with an addiction issue, including harm reduction and the stages of change model along with an overview of the addiction treatment continuum of care.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this training, participants will:

  • Have a holistic understanding of the phenomenon of addiction.
  • Be able to distinguish between biological, psychological and social theories pertaining to addiction.
  • Be aware of the interventions that are currently in use with people with addiction issues in Canada.
  • Understand the stages of change model.
  • Have an understanding of the treatment continuum in the addiction field including harm reduction options, methadone maintenance, withdrawal management, outpatient counselling, residential treatment, addiction supportive housing, relapse prevention and self-help/mutual aid support groups.
  • Have an understanding of the association between oppression and addiction.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Pharmacology

This workshop will provide the participant with a solid foundation on the unique attributes of the range of psychoactive drugs from alcohol and cannabis to bath salts, crystal meth and oxycontin and how each in turn affects the brain and human behaviour. The four groupings of psychoactive agents depressants, including opioids, stimulants, hallucinogens and psychotherapeutic agents will be examined including the active effects on a user along with withdrawal. The social context of drug use will also be discussed providing a frame regarding how drugs are deemed licit or illicit in Canada as will the relationship between drug use and sleep.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Electives (60 Hours)

Behavioural Addictions: Gambling, Gaming and Technology Overuse

Behavioural addictions are garnering increasing attention in both clinical contexts and in addiction research. There have been two significant changes that have happened recently that have put a spotlight on behavioural addictions. In 2013, the DSM-5 reclassified pathological gambling from an impulse control disorder to an addiction and in 2018 the World Health Organization (WHO) proposed adding Gaming Disorder to the eleventh revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-11). These changes, informed by advancements in neuroscience, exemplify an evolving understanding and acknowledgement of behavioural processes as having similar features to that of substance abuse.

Day one of the two-day workshop will focus on problem gambling and day two will focus on gaming and technology overuse. This series on behavioural addictions will provide participants with an overview of problem gambling, gaming and technology overuse and will explore the similarities and differences between behavioural addictions and substance abuse. This interactive two-day workshop will include several types of media, such as lectures, videos, music, case studies, and engaging exercises to create a robust learning experience.

Learning Objectives

  • Develop an understanding of the overlap between gambling, gaming and technology overuse.
  • Increase awareness about prevalence rates across multiple demographic populations and at-risk populations.
  • Identify warning signs of gambling, gaming and technology use.
  • Explore how behavioural addictions impact major life domains and overall wellness (physical, emotional, mental, financial, social etc.).
  • Learn about screening methods to identify gambling, gaming and technology overuse in clients.
  • Increase understanding of the importance of mitigating harm by promoting responsible gambling and a balanced use of technology.
  • Discuss evidence-based treatment approaches.
  • Learn practical strategies, resources, tools and supports that can be used personally and professionally.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Engaging Challenging Clients: Working in Addictions with Specialized Populations

  • Dates: Nov. 4 and 5, 2019 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Cost: $330
  • Location: Kitchener
  • Instructor: Omer Vandevyver, MSW, RSW
  • Hours: 12

This two-day workshop will provide participants with a comprehensive understanding of specialized populations as well as practical tools to engage and successfully support these clients across a broad range of settings. Issues of addiction treatment with mandated clients including forensics, older adults, the homeless, those with trauma and borderline personality disorder will be discussed in an interactive forum. Using case examples this workshop will explore ways of working with pre-contemplative clients creatively and effectively. By combining stages of change, motivational interviewing and brief solution focused concepts, participants will come away from this workshop with new tools to engage challenging clients, whether leading to lasting change or "planting a seed." Attend this two-day workshop and become "complex competent" in working with those struggling with addiction issues.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Trauma and Addictions

Fall 2019

  • Dates: Nov. 14 and 15, 2019 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Cost: $330
  • Location: Kitchener
  • Instructors: Ian Robertson, MSW, RSW
  • Hours: 12

Spring 2020

  • Dates: June 17 and 18, 2020 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Cost: $330
  • Location: Kitchener
  • Instructor: Ian Robertson, MSW, RSW
  • Hours: 12

Recent research has confirmed what addiction treatment providers already knew to be true: the large majority of people who suffer from addiction issues also have a history of trauma and/or victimization. Experiences of trauma can cause lasting psychological and physiological effects including deficiencies in emotional regulation, problem solving and impulse control. This, in turn, can lead to the use of alcohol, drugs and/or addictive behaviours as a "functional fit" to cope with overwhelming emotions, physical dysregulation and other post-traumatic symptoms. This two-day workshop explores the connection between trauma and addiction with a focus on providing knowledge, tools and resources to effectively serve clients who are dealing with both trauma and addiction issues.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this training, participants will be able to:

  • Explain the link between trauma and addiction, including the neurobiology, physical and emotional responses of trauma and how they intersect with addictions
  • Impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences on future substance use dependency
  • Understand the impact of compassion fatigue when providing treatment to individuals with trauma/addictions
  • Being fully with the client, supporting connection, attachment and safety
  • The importance of integrating a trauma-informed care within organizations and service delivery model for addiction treatment
  • The impact of stigma, either visibly and invisibly, and how it operates within the structures of treatment for addictions and mental health
  • Understand addiction as a survival/coping strategy for traumatic memories and symptoms
  • The understanding and role of Structured Dissociative Approach within substance abuse treatment
  • Teach clients tools and practical strategies to regulate autonomic arousal and trauma-related emotions and body sensations without resorting to addictive behaviours
  • Explain and demonstrate strategies for flashback management
  • Review the of Seeking Safety Model and ATRIUM Model, supporting a trauma-informed care approach

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Motivational Interviewing in Addiction Treatment

  • Dates: Dec. 12 and 13, 2019 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Cost: $330
  • Location: Kitchener
  • Instructor: Angela Rolleman, MSW, RSW
  • Hours: 12

Motivational interviewing (MI), developed by clinical psychologists William Miller and Stephen Rollnick, is a person-centred approach used to elicit and strengthen clients’ motivation for positive behaviour change while addressing the common problem of ambivalence about change. This approach has been established as an evidence-based practice for the treatment of individuals with addiction problems. Clinical trials have found that clients exposed to MI (vs. more directive treatment interventions) are more likely to enter and complete addiction treatment, and have substantially higher abstinence and reduction rates in their substance use. This two-day interactive workshop will introduce participants to the clinical method of MI and provide opportunities for hands-on practice with applying this approach to motivate clients to change problematic substance use and other addictive behaviours.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this training, participants will be able to:

  • Describe the basic concepts of MI, including its spirit and essential strategies.
  • Understand the relationship between motivational interventions and the stages of change.
  • Implement motivational interviewing strategies to resolve clients' feelings of ambivalence or resistance to changing addictive behaviours.
  • Recognize fundamental client language cues indicating readiness to change.
  • Strengthen empathic counselling skills.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Counselling Techniques in Addiction Practice

  • Dates: Feb. 20 and 21, 2020 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Cost: $330
  • Location: Kitchener
  • Instructors: Jennifer Will, BA, RP
  • Hours: 12

This interactive two-day workshop explores counselling techniques for treating addiction in an individual counselling setting. We will learn about the ways in which the treatment of addiction was conceptualized over time and consider our own theoretical leanings around the nature of addiction. Participants will have an opportunity to augment their counselling skills with hands-on practice in a variety of techniques with emphasis on brief solution focused therapy and cognitive behavioural therapy. The focus of this workshop is on the application of theory to the counselling setting and there will be many opportunities for participants to practice face-to-face skill development.

Learning Objectives

  • To become aware of personal beliefs of the nature of addiction and understand how this has an impact on treatment.
  • To practice, practice, practice various counselling techniques.
  • To learn a variety of skills in order to tailor treatment to the individual.

This workshop will not include detailed information on Motivational Interviewing, Relapse Prevention or the Indigenous population, as these topics are covered in other workshops offered in the Addictions Certificate program.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Addiction and the Family

Addiction affects everyone in the family. Family system theory suggests that individuals in families cannot interact without impacting the whole. This two-day workshop will explore just how each member may be impacted by addiction. At times, loved ones may resort to using coping skills that are maladaptive and are not helpful to them or to their loved one who is struggling with addiction. Family members who have lived with addiction may learn to not feel, not trust and not talk. Working with both family members and their loved one can be a challenge. This workshop will provide tools to help facilitate this process in an interactive and practical manner.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this training, participants will:

  • Be able to discuss various family theories, including family roles and rules and how addiction can interfere.
  • Have insight into various treatment modalities and tools to help support families.
  • Know how to assess family members living with addiction and provide treatment planning.
  • Understand how family involvement and recovery can help prevent relapse for both the family members and the person struggling with addictions (including how to support families when their loved one is pre-contemplative about changing).
  • Increase knowledge about various community supports, and resources available for family members.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Understanding Relapse Prevention

Relapse prevention (RP) is a broad term that refers to a wide range of therapeutic techniques that aid in the prevention of lapses and the relapse of addictive behaviours. The term relapse was initially used in the medical field to refer to those people who re-experience a disease stage (Marlatt and Donovan, 2005). In the addiction field, this term is commonly associated with returning to addictive behaviours/substances after a period of abstinence.

RP is essentially cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) with a focus on the maintenance stage of addictive behaviour change that has three main goals:

  • Prevent a return to addictive behaviours/substances.
  • Prevent a slip or lapse from turning into a relapse.
  • Stop relapse quickly should it occur.

RP aims to increase the client’s awareness of high-risk situations and increase coping skills, self-efficacy and control of internal and external triggers that may make the client more vulnerable to relapse. Relapse prevention is highly educational and a specialized skill set that is integral to addressing all types of addictions.

Course Objectives

  • Create an understanding of relapse as an unfolding process rather than an event.
  • Develop an understanding of relapse terminology.
  • Review key philosophies and theoretical approaches (Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention).
  • Understand the role of relapse in the stages of change model.
  • Identify the three most common high-risk situations that precipitate relapse.
  • Understand the role that seemingly unrelated decisions (SUD) play in the relapse chain.
  • Explore how healthy lifestyle changes aid in RP.
  • Increase understanding about the power of distraction in coping with cravings.
  • Learn about the value of a support system.
  • Address common myths associated with relapse.
  • Increase the helping provider’s confidence in engaging in a discussion about the essential components of relapse prevention: high-risk situations, urges and triggers.
  • Learn and apply practical skills that will assist the client in developing an individualized relapse prevention plan.

Supplementary Resources

For additional learning, the following books are recommended by instructor:

  • Structured Relapse Prevention: An Outpatient Counselling Approach (2nd Edition) by Marilyn A. Herie and Lyn Watkin-Merek
  • Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention for Addictive Behaviours, A Clinicians Guide by Sarah Bowen, Neha Chawla, G. Alan Marlatt
  • Mindfulness Based Relapse Prevention for Problem Gambling by Peter Chen, Farah Jindani, and Nigel E. Turner

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Exploring Harm Reduction as an Essential Skill Set in Substance Use Treatment

  • Dates: April 23 and 24, 2020 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Cost: $330
  • Location: Kitchener
  • Instructor: Colin McVicker, BA, MA, RP
  • Hours: 12

During this two-day workshop, learners will have the opportunity to gain a deeper understanding of the philosophy of care when it comes to harm reduction and how this philosophy differs from traditional approaches in substance use treatment. Building your skills in applying the harm reduction method will allow learners to better engage individuals experiencing stigma. Learners will be introduced to critical skills in creating harm reduction goals for treatment and have the opportunity to practice applying these skills.

Learning Objectives

Key objectives for this workshop include:

  • Harm reduction as part of the larger treatment process in addictions treatment.
  • A systems approach to harm reduction -- opportunities and challenges.
  • Demystifying harm reduction and building a culturally sensitive lens to enhance addictions treatment.
  • Quantifying success through the eyes of a harm reductionist.
  • Building familiarity with harm reduction supplies and safe consumption sites.
  • Exploring tangible ways to build harm reduction into clinical practice.
  • Hearing impact of harm reduction from the lived experience perspective.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Behavioural Addictions: Sex and Shopping

  • Dates: May 4, 2020 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Cost: $210
  • Location: Kitchener
  • Instructor: Lisa Pont, BSW, MSW, RSW
  • Hours: 6

There are certain pleasurable behaviours that are necessary parts of daily living; however, when engaged in excessively, these behaviours can have a negative impact on people’s lives. This workshop will explore the etiology of two of these behaviours; sex and shopping, including risk factors as well as signs, consequences and implications for treatment. This training will address screening and assessment tools and strategies along with the current treatment landscape for shopping and sex addiction.

Learning Objectives

After this workshop, participants will be able to:

  • Describe how people can become addicted to sex and shopping.
  • Identify risk factors for developing sex and shopping addiction.
  • Understand signs and consequences of sex and shopping addiction.
  • Identify and use screening and assessment tools for these client populations.
  • Discuss the current treatment options available for sex and shopping addiction.

CACCF: 6 continuing education hours.

Concurrent Disorders

  • Dates: May 13 and 14, 2020 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Cost: $330
  • Location: Kitchener
  • Instructor: Stephanie Kersta, MSW
  • Hours: 12

Individuals with substance use disorders are three times more likely to experience mental health issues in their lifetime. Similarly, individuals with mental health disorders are 20-50% more likely to experience substance use disorders. As a result of these significant rates, it is imperative to gain an understanding of the unique ways mental health and substance use co-occur and explore the unique challenges that individuals with concurrent disorders face in order to provide effective treatment. This two-day workshop examines the interplay of mental health disorders and substance abuse, with a focus on assisting participants in developing an increased awareness of concurrent disorders including how they are understood and detected, as well as which therapeutic approaches are best suited to effective treatment.

Learning Objectives

  • Examine theory, assessment, and intervention commonly used to address concurrent disorders.
  • Review which mental health disorders have a strong co-morbidity with various addiction concerns.
  • Explore best practices in working with concurrent disorders.
  • Recognize the ways in which concurrent disorders impact vulnerable groups.
  • Increase awareness of oppression and stigma experienced by individuals/families living with concurrent disorders.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Understanding Youth and Addictions

  • Dates: June 5, 2020 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Cost: $210
  • Location: Kitchener
  • Instructor:  Julia Read, MSW, PhD (c)
  • Hours: 6

This one-day workshop aims to help participants gain an understanding of the unique considerations of working with youth who are experiencing addiction issues. This workshop will explore how substance abuse can influence the developmental stages from adolescence to young adulthood. Through interactive learning modules and case studies, an overview of bio-psycho-social approaches to assessments, interventions and treatment modalities will be discussed.

Participants will be provided with information about resources and treatment options currently available.

Learning Objectives

  • Understand the difference between youth substance use, misuse, and abuse.
  • Describe the developmental stages from adolescence to young adulthood.
  • Understand different treatment modalities.
  • Understand the stages of change model for youth.

CACCF: 6 continuing education hours.

Indigenous Peoples: Addiction and Recovery

  • Dates: Next offering February 2020
  • Cost: $330
  • Location: Kitchener
  • Instructors: TBD
  • Hours: 12

This workshop is facilitated by Indigenous social workers with many years of practice in Indigenous communities. Participants will gain an overview of the issues Indigenous peoples experience with addictions by exploring the cultural and historical contexts. Further to the challenges of addictions this workshop will add personal touches with the stories and experiences of both Kathy and Hilton. Participants will have opportunities to engage in culturally based methods of learning about addictions and recovery. Participants will take away an understanding of reasons why addictions are so prevalent in Indigenous communities. This understanding will aid social workers or service provides to more effectively service Indigenous peoples. Participants will also be provided with resources and materials on Indigenous treatment approaches and healing centres.

Online Workshops

There are currently eight Addictions workshops available online, allowing you to complete the certificate program on your own schedule and from your own location. Each online workshop takes six weeks to complete and will require approximately two hours of work per week. Instructors will use a variety of learning methods, such as discussion boards, videos, quizzes and PowerPoint presentations to provide a rich learning experience.

Required (24 Hours)

Pharmacology (Online)

Winter 2020

Spring 2020

This online workshop will provide the participant with a solid foundation on the unique attributes of the range of psychoactive drugs from alcohol and cannabis to bath salts, crystal meth and oxycontin and how each in turn affects the brain and human behaviour. The four groupings of psychoactive agents depressants, including opioids, stimulants, hallucinogens and psychotherapeutic agents will be examined including the active effects on a user along with withdrawal. The social context of drug use will also be discussed providing a frame regarding how drugs are deemed licit or illicit in Canada.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Fundamentals of Addiction (Online)

Winter 2020

Spring 2020

This online course offers an overview of addiction and addiction treatment to assist you in developing a holistic understanding of the bio-psycho-social nature of this universal phenomenon. Participants will examine what addiction entails, be introduced to distinct theories of why addiction arises, the range of treatment options available to assist those with an addiction issue including harm reduction and the stages of change model along with an overview of the addiction treatment continuum of care.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this training, participants will:

  • Have a holistic understanding of the phenomenon of addiction.
  • Be able to explain why addiction arises from three distinct lenses.
  • Be aware of the interventions that are currently in use with people with addiction issues in Canada.
  • Understand the stages of change model.
  • Have an understanding of the treatment continuum in the addiction field including harm reduction options, methadone maintenance, withdrawal management, outpatient counselling, residential treatment, addiction supportive housing, relapse prevention and self-help/mutual aid support groups.
  • Have an understanding of the association between oppression and addiction.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Electives (60 Hours)

Counselling Techniques in Addition Practice (Online)

Fall 2019

Spring 2020

This interactive workshop explores counselling techniques for treating addiction in an individual counselling setting. The way we think about addiction will impact the way we treat addiction and so we will learn about the ways addiction has been conceptualized over time and consider our own views that shape our treatment approach. Participants will have an opportunity to augment their counselling skills with practice in a variety of techniques using brief solution focused therapy and cognitive behaviour therapy. The focus of this workshop is on the application of theory to the counselling setting and there will be many opportunities for participants to practice skill development.

Learning Objectives

  • Become aware of personal beliefs of addiction and understand how this has an impact on treatment.
  • Provide an overview of BSFT and CBT and the use of interventions in treating addiction.
  • Practice, practice, practice various counselling techniques.
  • Learn a variety of skills in order to tailor treatment to the individual.

This workshop will not include detailed information on Motivational Interviewing, Relapse Prevention or the Indigenous population, as these topics are covered in other workshops offered in the Addictions Certificate program.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Trauma and Addiction (Online)

Fall 2019

Spring 2020

Recent research has confirmed what addiction treatment providers already knew to be true: the large majority of people who suffer from addiction issues also have a history of trauma and/or victimization. Experiences of trauma can cause lasting psychological and physiological effects including deficiencies in emotional regulation, problem solving and impulse control. This, in turn, can lead to the use of alcohol, drugs and/or addictive behaviours as a "functional fit" to cope with overwhelming emotions, physical dysregulation and other post-traumatic symptoms.

This workshop explores the connection between trauma and addiction with a focus on providing knowledge, tools and resources to effectively serve clients who are dealing with both trauma and addiction issues.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this training, participants will be able to:

  • Explain the link between trauma and addiction, including the neurobiology, physical and emotional responses of trauma and how they intersect with addictions
  • Impact of Adverse Childhood Experiences on future substance use dependency
  • Understand the impact of compassion fatigue when providing treatment to individuals with trauma/addictions
  • Being FULLY with the client, supporting connection, attachment and safety
  • The importance of integrating a trauma-informed care within organizations and service delivery model for addiction treatment
  • The impact of stigma, either visibly and invisibly, and how it operates within the structures of treatment for addictions and mental health
  • Understand addiction as a survival/coping strategy for traumatic memories and symptoms
  • The understanding and role of Structured Dissociative Approach within substance abuse treatment
  • Teach clients tools and practical strategies to regulate autonomic arousal and trauma-related emotions and body sensations without resorting to addictive behaviours
  • Explain and demonstrate strategies for flashback management
  • Review the of Seeking Safety Model and ATRIUM Model, supporting a trauma-informed care approach

Note: There is quite a bit of overlap between this workshop and Foundations of Trauma, so we don’t recommend taking both Foundations of Trauma and Trauma and Addictions.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Concurrent Disorders (Online)

Fall 2019

Spring 2020

It is estimated that 70-80% of people seeking help for substance use, and 15-20% seeking help for mental health, are experiencing concurrent disorders (CCSA, 2013). Co-occurring substance use and mental health problems present challenges for people in accessing comprehensive support and services as, historically, the treatment options have been largely compartmentalized. This course is designed to help participants gain the skills and knowledge to better provide an integrated treatment approach for people with concurrent disorders, ensuring a more positive and effective experience for clients.

Learning Objectives

In this course, participants will:

  • Develop an understanding of the complex nature of concurrent disorders.
  • Identify needs and barriers as a special population.
  • Learn to screen and assess next steps in treatment.
  • Start to assess risk and how to intervene in crisis.
  • Explore strategies to facilitate recovery and maintain optimal mental health.
  • Be informed of best practices and increase clinical knowledge.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Engaging Challenging Clients: Working in Addictions with Specialized Populations (Online)

Winter 2020

Spring 2020

This online course is designed to provide participants with a comprehensive understanding of specialized populations as well as provide some practical tools to engage and support these clients across a broad range of settings. This course will be subdivided into six weekly modules that will use various methods to facilitate meaningful dialogue and learning. Upon completion of this course individuals will have the knowledge to help generate foundational skills in ensuring a client centered practice, whether leading to lasting change or "planting a seed".

Learning Objectives

Topics of the course will include:

  • Delivering addiction work through a trauma informed lens.
  • Engaging mandated clients in a change process.
  • Exploring substance use issues among older adults.
  • How to use harm reduction as a therapeutic intervention tool in addictions work.
  • Working with individuals experiencing complex concurrent issues.
This course will use a stages of change informed approach in helping clinicians develop effective clinical engagements with a wide range of clients experiencing complex needs.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Addiction and the Family (Online)

Spring 2020

Addiction affects everyone in the family. Family system theory suggests that individuals in families cannot interact without impacting the whole. This online workshop will explore just how each member may be impacted by addiction. At times, loved ones may resort to using coping skills that are maladaptive and are not helpful to them or to their family members struggling with addiction. Family members who have lived with addiction may learn to not feel, not trust and not talk. Working with both family members and the person struggling with addiction can be a challenge. This online workshop will provide various tools to help facilitate this process in an interactive and practical manner.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this training, participants will:

  • Be able to discuss various family theories, including family roles and rules and how addiction can interfere.
  • Have insight into the various treatment modalities and tools to help support families.
  • Know how to assess substance abuse/dependence in families and provide treatment planning.
  • Understand how family involvement and recovery can help prevent relapse for both the family members and the person struggling with addiction (including how to support families when their loved one is pre-contemplative about changing).
  • Have an increase in knowledge about the various supports and resources available for family members.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours.

Understanding Relapse Prevention (Online)

Spring 2020

Relapse prevention (RP) is a broad term that refers to a wide range of therapeutic techniques that aid in the prevention of slips, lapses and relapses. The term relapse was initially used in the medical field to refer to those people who re-experience a disease stage (Marlatt and Donovan, 2005). In the addiction field, this term is commonly associated with returning to addictive behaviours/substances after a period of abstinence. RP is essentially cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and has three main goals:

  • Prevent a return to addictive behaviours/substances.
  • Prevent a slip or lapse from turning into a relapse.
  • Stop relapse quickly should it occur.

RP aims to increase the client’s awareness of high-risk situations and increase coping skills, self-efficacy and control of internal and external triggers that may make the client more vulnerable to relapse.

Learning Objectives

By the end of this course you will be able to:

  • Define and describe relapse, the relapse process and a variety of relapse terminology.
  • Summarize theoretical perspectives and explain the contributions each has made to furthering our understanding of relapse prevention.
  • Identify and describe common high-risk situations that precipitate relapse.
  • Describe a variety of coping strategies that can help manage high-risk situations and urges/cravings.
  • Explain the role of seemingly irrelevant decisions (SIDS) in the relapse process.
  • Explain how the clinician’s attitude and approach can impact the relapse process in a positive and negative manner.
  • Explain common myths associated with relapse.

Supplementary Resources

  • Structured Relapse Prevention: An Outpatient Counselling Approach (2nd Edition) by Marilyn A. Herie and Lyn Watkin-Merek
  • Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention for Addictive Behaviours, A Clinicians Guide by Sarah Bowen, Neha Chawla, G. Alan Marlatt
  • Mindfulness Based Relapse Prevention for Problem Gambling by Peter Chen, Farah Jindani, and Nigel E. Turner

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours

Contact Us:

Lynne Jordan, Coordinator, Professional Development

E: ljordan@wlu.ca
T: 519.884.0710 x5265

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