The Southern Alberta Self-Help Association


Business Number: 119254944RR0001

The Southern Alberta Self - Help Association (SASHA) is a non-profit community organization whose mission is to promote the independence of persons with mental illness by means of transitional and long-term housing through supportive programs and activities. Services include support for co-occurring addictions.

Support is available through:

Residential living:

16 transitional and 8 long-term residential beds are available for individuals to develop and/or maintain independent living skills such as medication management, symptom management, nutrition and meal preparation, household maintenance, and money management skills. A team of specially trained staff work with the client’s Mental Health Therapist to assess individual needs, develop an Individual Service Plan for their stay with SASHA, and provide the guidance and direction needed to help clients reach their goals. Staff support is available 24 hours daily. Lengths of stay in the transitional program vary from a few months up to a year. Long-term clients stay as long as the program is able to meet their needs.

Community Treatment Orders (CTO):

CTO clients have been mandated by the court, in accordance with the Mental Health Act, to participate in the SASHA program. Their needs are greater and sometimes more complicated. Alberta Health Services provides funds to support these individuals 24 hours a day. Five of our residential beds are designated for this service.

Respite Services:

A short stay bed is available which allows an individual to retreat from a situation that may be causing stress, or to provide a safe place while permanent housing can be found. There is a small daily fee for which funding may be available. Maximum stay is three weeks.

SASHA 2.0:

Clients of SASHA’s residential program may be considered for our permanent supportive housing program in the community. This will help SASHA clients needing less support move into more private community living once they have mastered the residential program. Clients move into a unit provided by the Lethbridge Housing Authority, and SASHA provides long term supportive services based on each individual’s needs. Clients may return to SASHA for short stays if they are having difficulty and need more support.

Community Clients:

Individuals that used to live in SASHA’s residential program and have moved out on their own. For a number of reasons they continue to seek out staff and visit current clients, staying connected with SASHA. They are registered as a Community Client so they can benefit from some of our services while being encouraged to use and/or be referred to community resources.

Recreation and Leisure:

Support is available for recreation and leisure activities. Clients are encouraged to use community facilities and services. This program is funded through the United Way. Southern Alberta Self–Help Association Program Description  

Community Integration:

Local Agencies:

SASHA works closely with other agencies involved in helping individuals live successfully in the community.

SASHA “Store”:

Free household furnishings are available for individuals meeting the criteria for need. This is made possible through community donations.


Placements are available for individuals interested in spending time with persons experiencing mental health problems and/or for sitting on the Board of Directors. Hours and time commitment is flexible. This may be set up as a student placement.


Criteria for Acceptance:

  • Age 18 to 64.
  • Diagnosed with a severe and/or persistent mental illness.
  • Willing to participate in programs.
  • Able to function in an open residential setting.


  • Active substance abuse.
  • High suicide risk.
  • Physical health conditions requiring medical support.
  • Primary diagnosis of Developmental Disability.
  • High risk behaviours putting themselves and/or others at risk.

Referral Process:

  • Call to inquire about space.
  • Have a therapist or doctor submit a referral. We can send you a referral package. Forms are also available on our website.
  • If suitable a tour and pre-intake assessment will be arranged.
  • Referral information gathered is reviewed with the staff team for approval.
  • A decision is made and notification of acceptance or rejection is given.
  • Intake date established once source of income, therapist and doctor are confirmed.

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