There are numerous treatment options for addiction available in Whatcom and Skagit counties. Rehab facilities near Bellingham can help you recover from addiction today.
Those seeking addiction treatment can find a variety of options in the Birchwood area, the Columbia area and other parts of Bellingham, Washington. Also, several organizations in Whatcom and Skagit counties develop and implement substance abuse prevention strategies in local communities.
The Whatcom County chapter of Alcoholics Anonymous, the Western Washington Area of Alcoholics Anonymous and the Northwest Washington Area of Narcotics Anonymous host hundreds of support group meetings every week.
Through support group meetings and other recovery resources, sober living environments in the Bellingham area strive to help people in recovery maintain their sobriety.
Oxford Houses are self-supported sober homes for people recovering from drug or alcohol addiction. Located across the U.S. and in countries such as Canada and Australia, these homes are run by residents who help each other learn responsibility during their recovery.
Bellingham has an Oxford home on View Ridge Drive, Connelly Avenue and Yew Street Road. Four gender-specific Oxford Houses can be found in Mount Vernon, Washington, the county seat of Skagit County.
Full Contact Recovery Support Services aims to assist people during their recovery. Through individual therapy, 12-step meetings and social activities, the company aims to improve its clients’ physical, emotional, mental, spiritual and social health.
All residents receive a free membership to a nearby gym. They can also engage in martial arts classes and enjoy outdoor activities such as hiking, backpacking and skiing.
The opioid epidemic has affected people across the United States. Abuse of heroin and prescription painkillers has ravaged communities in Ohio, West Virginia in Kentucky, but Whatcom and Skagit counties have also felt the effects of this public health crisis.
In Whatcom County, the annual rate of crime lab cases involving an opioid rose by 122 percent from 2002–2004 to 2011–2013. During that time, the annual rate of opioid-related deaths climbed by nearly 23 percent, and the annual rate of publicly funded rehab admissions involving opioids increased by 308 percent.
Opioid misuse and abuse had an even greater effect on Skagit County in the same period. During that time:
The rates at which doctors in Skagit and Whatcom counties prescribe buprenorphine, a medication used to treat opioid addiction, are among the highest in Washington. In 2013, physicians in Whatcom County wrote between 300 and 500 buprenorphine prescriptions per 100,000 residents. That year, doctors in Skagit County wrote more than 500 buprenorphine prescriptions per 100,000 residents.
The governments in Whatcom and Skagit counties strive to reduce illicit drug use, treat residents suffering from addiction and support community prevention organizations.
The Whatcom County Substance Abuse Program supports community-based prevention and treatment efforts by distributing federal, state and local funds. The county partners with local advisory boards, service providers and community organizations to assess local needs and implement prevention efforts.
Whatcom County Treatment Services provides funding, support and referrals for services such as adult outpatient care, alcohol protective custody, childcare services, co-occurring disorder treatment, medical detox, offender outreach services, pregnant and parenting services and youth outpatient outreach programs.
The Whatcom County Substance Abuse Prevention program coordinates prevention services with local schools and volunteer organizations. The program has distributed funds to all seven school districts in Whatcom County and supports initiatives in line with the state of Washington’s Community Prevention & Wellness Initiative.
The Skagit County Behavioral Health Program coordinates treatment and recovery resources for community organizations and health care providers in the area. The county’s Community Wellness Program provides short-term counseling services and is funded by a 0.1 percent sales tax, which was established to support care for mental health and substance dependency treatment.
The Whatcom County Incarceration Prevention and Reduction Task Force reviews the county’s criminal justice and mental health programs and develops recommendations for improvement. The task force’s goal is to reduce the incarceration of individuals with mental health or substance use disorders and help them obtain treatment.
Higher education institutions in the Bellingham area provide students with counseling and treatment resources geared toward overcoming problems with substance use.
Counselors at the Bellingham Technical College Admissions and Student Resource Center help students in crisis caused by stress, grief and loss. Students can receive counseling for anxiety, depression and anger issues. The center can also refer students to community resources for help with substance use disorders.
Counseling services at Whatcom Community College provide short-term counseling for students on issues related to stress management, anxiety and depression. The college also provides referral services for students suffering from substance use disorders, eating disorders and other mental health problems.
Western Washington University has a number of drug prevention, intervention and referral services available for students, faculty and staff.
ADCAS staff members help students make healthy choices regarding drug use by providing risk-reduction assessments, answers to questions and outreach to at-risk students.
The AOD Risk Reduction group promotes safe and healthy activities by providing informational sessions and campus outreach programs about the risks of substance use. Peer educators provide classes on alcohol, marijuana and other drug consumption.
The AlcoholEdu program is an online resource for WWU students, faculty and staff that provides information about the risks of drinking. The program is designed to empower participants to make healthy decisions in order to reduce risks associated with drinking.
Students can access short-term individual and group counseling or receive referrals for long-term counseling at WWU’s Counseling Center. Staff members also provide educational workshops on campus.
Many organizations in Whatcom and Skagit counties implement programs and prevention resources aiming to reduce substance abuse in the area.
The Whatcom Prevention Coalition’s mission is to build safe and healthy communities by preventing drug use and promoting safe activities for youth and families. The coalition hosts discussions and educational events, develops community trainings and advocates for effective policy changes in Whatcom County.
The Skagit County Child and Family Consortium comprises community coalitions, health care providers, school district representatives and businesses that coordinate community education and drug prevention initiatives. The consortium identifies weaknesses in local services and develops plans to strengthen them.
The Shuksan Community Network provides substance abuse prevention services to the Birchwood community as a part of the state’s Community Prevention and Wellness Initiative. The coalition’s efforts include hosting family nights, forums on marijuana use and neighborhood family nights.
The Campus Community Coalition was founded on the campus of Western Washington University as an effort to reduce student alcohol abuse. Today, the coalition promotes overall student health and safety on multiple college campuses in the Bellingham area through a variety of efforts.
The Bellingham area offers several programs that teach youths the importance of healthy decision-making and the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse.
The Make A Difference group teaches students about social norms regarding alcohol and drug abuse. The group’s Keepin’ it Real program teaches students about the dangers of substance abuse.
The Squalicum Health Alliance promotes healthy decision-making skills by hosting events about the dangers of distracted driving, the risks of alcohol consumption and the health effects of smoking.
The Natural High Club at Horizon Middle School teaches students to avoid alcohol and other drugs in order to achieve a natural high from accomplishing goals.
The Shuksan Prevention Crew has reduced the prevalence of underage alcohol and drug use at Shuksan Middle School, where drug use was once a major problem.
Grizzlies Gettin’ Gritty has hosted drug-free events such as the Kick Butts Day, movie nights and a school-wide assembly on the dangers of alcohol and drug use
The Kulshan Prevention Team promotes collaboration between students and teachers to create a fun, safe and drug-free environment at Kulshan Middle School.
The Serving Our Community with Kindness club promotes alcohol- and drug-free lifestyles by engaging in community-service projects.
The Natural High Club at Vista Middle School provides support for students who strive to obtain natural highs by abstaining from alcohol and drug use to reach their goals.
You can find healthy ways to stay busy during recovery and assist individuals suffering from addiction by volunteering your time to organizations near Bellingham.
Community Voices Are Born is a community-based organization that helps people with mental health and substance use disorders. The organization’s Skagit Valley Reach Center hosts support groups, provides classes and runs other activities. It relies on volunteer support for several initiatives.
The Concrete Resource Coalition collaborates with businesses and community organizations to reduce childhood delinquency and substance abuse in Concrete, Washington. The coalition develops and implements media campaigns to influence community attitudes about substance abuse. Volunteers are needed to assist in a variety of areas.
After treatment, finding employment can be challenging. But a variety of programs near Bellingham help people improve their vocational skills, update their resumes and find jobs.
WorkSource Washington is a collaboration among state, local and nonprofit agencies in Washington that strive to provide job and training services to residents. WorkSource Whatcom offers workshops designed to prepare people to find and secure employment. These events offer mock interviews, networking opportunities and other employment resources.
Whatcom Work Opportunities provides vocational services to Whatcom County adults with disabilities. The agency provides job tours, job development, job shadowing and placement services. It also offers assessments that guide people toward jobs that match their skillset.
Goodwill in Bellingham provides residents with free educational classes that cover career planning and promote success in the workplace. Through these courses, individuals can learn computer skills and prepare for GED examinations. This Goodwill location also offers English courses for people whose native language is not English.
In Whatcom and Skagit counties, people in recovery can engage in a host of sober activities. The area includes historical landmarks, museums and outdoor excursions.
You can take a scenic drive down Chuckanut Drive, located along Samish Bay, or cruise down Mount Baker Highway, which runs along North Fork Noosack River and parallel to Mount Baker. Get out of the car and stretch your legs by visiting Whatcom Falls Park, Lake Padden Park or Larrabee State Park.
You can participate in an abundance of water activities on Bellingham Bay, Samish Bay or Lummi Bay. You can go on a paddle boarding or sailing excursion or make a salmon run on a charter fishing trip. Enjoy a number of overnight excursions, such as camping on Lummi Island or taking a cruise.
Back on land, you can check out downtown Bellingham’s Art Walk on the first Friday of every month. You can also visit the Fairhaven Historic District, the Bellingham Railway Museum or the Spark Museum of Electrical Invention for a history lesson. During the evening, the Mount Baker Theatre provides live shows.