‘Magic’ is the word Addictions Counsellor, Brittany McDonald uses to describe the life-changing work that happens at Renascent Graham Munro Treatment Centre (Munro Centre). Having cared for hundreds at Munro Centre, Brittany knows it is the willingness of clients to receive help, coupled with the unparalleled skill and commitment of staff, which makes this ‘magic’ happen.
Brittany’s passion for recovery is shared by all members of the Munro team who also have lived experience with addiction. Having started at the women’s treatment centre as a student in 2020, Brittany quickly knew she had found her professional home.
“After spending time at the Munro Centre, I knew that working in a residential treatment setting was where I needed to be. Seeing the light come on in clients’ eyes as they learn and grow in early recovery and seeing them graduate after embracing such change while at Munro Centre really confirmed my decision to work in addiction treatment,” said Brittany. “Renascent’s vision and values also align with my own, and I couldn’t think of a better place to work.”
Brittany works as part of a cohesive team to conduct case conferences (ongoing reviews of each client’s progress through their case file), individual therapeutic assessments and counselling sessions, admits new clients, performs case management, and facilitates psycho-educational groups.
“We all play a crucial part in the heartbeat of Munro. Each of the counsellors has varying areas of expertise that complement each other to make us an incredibly strong team,” said Brittany.
Never having been to treatment herself, Brittany knows the impact the stigma associated with addiction can have on someone’s ability to get the help they desperately need. She shares what living with addiction was like for her, “To the outside world, I tried to paint this picture that I had my life together and I wasn’t being entirely truthful with my family and friends about my struggles. Inside I was dying, and I needed to make drastic changes. Once I experienced the support from the 12-step community, I was able to get honest with myself and then begin to make changes to save my life. This was the turning point for me in my recovery journey.”
Brittany has also taken a leading role in supporting Renascent’s Road to Recovery Walkathon/Run fundraising event. This is the second year that Brittany and her partner Jason H., are supporting the event. Last year, the couple helped raise more than $10,000 for Renascent, hosted a walk along Whitby’s Waterfront Trail, and held a backyard celebration.
Renascent Road to Recovery runs from September 1 – October 15. To participate, learn more, or to donate, visit: renascent.ca/roadtorecovery.