Orca Lelum is dedicated to providing a safe and nurturing environment for Indigenous youth ages 12-18 who have substance use challenges with/without co-occurring mental health concerns. Orca Lelum is an open-door centre; we walk
alongside youth who feel ready to embrace their healing

Rooted in Indigenous ways of being, we help to empower young people to reclaim their strength, resilience, and cultural identity. We strive to instil a profound sense of purpose and connection that goes beyond treatment. Drawing from the strengths of both worlds, mainstream wellness approaches are weaved with Indigenous ways of healing to create stronger outcomes.

Services include:
- A safe and supportive 10-week live-in wellness program rooted in Indigenous healing practices
- Medically supervised withdrawal management support (detox)
- Holistic individualized wellness plans incorporating heart, mind, body and spirit
- Harm reduction education and abstinence support
- Connection to Elders and Knowledge Keepers
- Connection to community services

Medically Supervised Detox & Mental Health Crisis Support

We offer holistic live-in, medically supervised withdrawal support (detox) and mental health crisis supports.

Orca Lelum provides medically supervised withdrawl management and mental health stabilization crisis support for youth on a drop-in basis. These wellness beds are for short term service (7 - 10 days).

These voluntary safe spaces are for youth seeking support in detoxing from alcohol and/or substances or those experiencing mental health crises.

Cultural interventions are provided to support grounding and connection to spirit, giving youth space to experience culture as a method of healing. Youth have access to primary care and a safe place to reside while they are detoxing.

Youth have the opportunity to learn harm reduction strategies, post detox strategies, receive counselling, and participate in recreational activities until they feel stabilized.

Beautiful sunset on Seattle's Elliott Bay with rocky shoreline silhouette lower frame, orange sunset reflection on water of Puget Sound as sun goes behind Olympic Mountains in silhouette. Nice clouds.

Culturally Supported, 10-Week Residential Wellness Program

Orca Lelum's flagship program is a 10-week, live-in wellness and trauma healing program for youth facing trauma and addiction challenges.

Rooted in the snuw’uy’ulh teachings of the Coast Salish Peoples, these ancestral gifts guide us and keep us healthy. They show us how to respect the gifts given to the mustimuxw (people) of the Land and thrive.

The 10-week program offers intensive wellness support, including counseling, group work, medical consultations, and cultural, recreational, and social activities. Drawing from the strengths of both worlds, mainstream wellness approaches are weaved with Indigenous ways of healing to create stronger outcomes.

Participants, limited to a group of 10, engage in therapeutic support, cultural teachings, ceremonies, and wellness activities in a culturally safe environment. The program fosters recovery, coping skills, and resilience, helping youth address why substances have been used to numb pain.

Food and lodging are provided for youth so they can turn inwards to focus on new ways of being.

Program Components:

  • Land-based healing including ceremony, medicines, ceremonial bathing, brushings, identity and belonging
  • Life skills development and emotional intelligence
  • Therapeutic approaches - talking circles and clinical models
  • Physical and social recreational activities
  •  Wellness based programs to support  spiritual, emotional, mental, and physical growth and wellbeing

Self-reflection questions for youth thinking about applying:

Are drugs or alcohol causing you problems, and are you willing to try to stop using them?

Are you ready to talk about why you use drugs or alcohol, in a safe place where people support you?

Would you be okay living away from home for a bit, like at Orca Lelum?

Do you feel okay participating in traditional Indigenous healing methods, like ceremonies and drumming, which are meant to help you heal?

Currently accepting referrals.

Please see our Intake and Referral page