Supportive program available for pregnant, post-partem women who acknowledge drug or alcohol use during pregnancy

Christine Rachar is spreading the word about a program available locally to help supporting women who are pregnant or six months post-partum who acknowledge drug and or alcohol use during their pregnancy.

Rachar works for a social services agency McMan Youth and Family Services and runs a program in the rural foothills called the Parent Child Assistance Program (PCAP). The program, available at no cost, is an in-home support that offers community referrals, mentoring, parenting support and accessing basic needs such as income support, housing and addictions support.

PCAP is tailored to meet a client’s individual needs, says Rachar, a PCAP parent advocate.

The harm reduction program offers non-judgmental support for new mothers, she says.

“We want them to be the best clean and sober parents they can be,” Rachar said during an interview.

Rachar says McMan hopes to increase the public profile of PCAP. With the opioid crisis, the social services agency is trying to let women know there is support, she said.

There are about 30 PCAP sites throughout Alberta, but the foothills PCAP is the only rural one, covering the municipal districts of Willow Creek and Foothills, and the Vulcan area.

So far, about 60 women from the foothills area have participated in the program Rachar currently has 11 PCAP clients.

“I personally have never had a mom have another pregnancy with drugs or alcohol,” said Rachar.

The success rate for the three-year program is about 90 per cent.

“It’s a pretty amazing program,” she said.

The Parent-Child Assistance Program started as a federally funded research demonstration project developed by Dr. Therese Grant at the University of Washington, according to the website of the Alberta PCAP Council.

The goals of PCAP are to support women to reduce or stop alcohol and/or drug use during pregnancy, to achieve and maintain recovery, and to support healthy pregnancies and lives for women and their children, reads the website. (Source article)