Wednesday, June 29th, 2011

How To Become an Addictions Counselor

Addictions Counselor

Several community colleges in Canada are providing addictions counselor education.

An addictions counselor is an individual who guides and helps others eliminate substance addiction, gambling or any other drug misuse. Addiction counselors usually work with a large number of people and refer them to concerned doctors, support groups and social services.

Addictions counselors are in high demand across Canada, and can earn anywhere from $14.54 to $25.91 per hour.

Your day-to-day tasks will include:

  • Help clients abstain from addiction to alcohol, drugs, and gambling
  • Help identify and overcome addictive behaviors and conditions
  • Facilitate the family members or loved ones who have been affected by addiction
  • Deal with the onoing consequences of their addiction
  • Work in evening times, as most of the clients are full-time job holders

What Do I Need to Start?

An ideal candidate must have the ability to express themselves clearly. They must also be good at identifying potential problems and solving problems by bringing people together. The profession needs people who are always looking for ways to help others.

What Should I Study?

Several community colleges in Canada are providing addictions counselor education, which would later help to qualify for the Canadian Contingent Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselor Designation (CCADC), which is the first step towards a complete certification as an internationally certified alcohol and drug abuse counselor (ICADC).

These colleges include:

What Else do I Need?

Requirements may slightly vary in each province, but might include:

  • An addictions counselor must be free from drugs, alcohol and other addictions.
  • Should have a graduate degree in Addiction Counseling, Human Resources and Psychology or Social Work
  • A certificate provided by Canadian Addiction Counselors Certification Federation (CACCF) in addictions counseling, or completed an internship and cleared a licensing exam.

CACCF provides a number of internationally recognized certifications:

  • International Certified Alcohol And Drug Counselor
  • Canadian Contingent Alcohol & Drug Counselor
  • International Certified Co-Occurring Disorders Professional
  • International Certified Co-Occurring Disorders Professional Diplomat
  • International Certified Clinical Supervisor

Where The Jobs Are

Addictions counselors can get jobs at rehabilitation centers, government agencies and community improvement programs. Private practices are viable options, as insurance companies are willing to cover counseling services.

Ryan Leclaire
Author: Ryan Leclaire
Ryan has been writing for 7 years and has been featured in Chatelaine, Canadian Living and Cottage life.
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