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Stonehenge Therapeutic Community is 45

Fundraising and story gathering.

Stonehenge Therapeutic Community has helped countless people overcome addiction, achieve a healthy lifestyle and restore confidence over the years. It is celebrating it’s 45th anniversary this year.  

Since the not-for-profit health provider’s beginnings, it has helped families and communities impacted by substance use and concurrent mental health challenges.

“There is always a need for addiction services, unfortunately,” said Marc De Vos, Stonehenge logistic manager, explaining the agency’s longevity. “But the culture here at Stonehenge and the treatment mode of the therapeutic community are all things that help sustain it. It’s such a unique program.”

To celebrate four-and-a-half decades of offering gender-specific addiction treatment services for adult men and women, the publicly funded agency has launched a fundraising campaign aimed at further enhancing what it does. At the same time, it is gathering 45 success stories from those years in celebration.

“The treatment modality is definitely unique,” De Vos said. “Our primary residential program is a therapeutic community in which the people do their own cooking, cleaning and yard work, with built-in life skills along side the treatment.”

He said the program is an intensive one from morning to evening, but with a balance of work and leisure.

“We are on the end of the treatment continuum, often getting the hardest cases,” he added. “A lot of our clients have already tried and failed the shorter term programs. In some cases, this is their last chance or last stop. So it is an intense, four- to six-month program for that reason. They are here long enough to unearth the trauma that caused some of the addiction.”

Based in Guelph, Stonehenge was founded in 1971 by Dr. John Dougan. It began as a small abstinence-based residential program that flourished and grew into a host of community-based programs. Addiction supportive housing, specialized outreach services, addiction support coordination and court support are among those programs.

The agency is funded by the Waterloo Wellington Local Health Integration Network, Correctional Service Canada, and the Ministry of Community Safety and Correctional Services.

The 45th anniversary fundraising effort began earlier this year and will have an official launch at the agency’s invite-only annual general meeting on Tuesday, June 28th at the University of Guelph. Donations can be made by mail, or online at