The 7th Step Society of Canada evolved from the 7th Step Foundation in the USA which was founded by Bill Sands - an ex offender, in Kansas State Pen in 1963. It was started in Canada in 1967 in Haney Correctional Institution, British Columbia by Tom Gordon and Jack Lynch. It became Incorporated in Canada as a National Charitable Organization in 1984 - Founding members Pat Graham, Bea Graham and George Myette. They are currently active in British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, Nova Scotia, PEI and Newfoundland. They have a National volunteer board comprised of non and ex offenders and receive a small annual sustaining grant from Public Safety Canada and donations from members to support national activities. Provincial chapter/members operate self help groups in provincial and federal prisons as well as community based support groups. The underlying philosophy is similar to the 12 Steps to Sobriety of AA but is not focused on substance abuse but rather on living free in society. They are not a "faith based" organization but are an organization based on faith - faith that people can change. Alberta is the largest provincial chapter with a 35 bed halfway house in Calgary as well as public education and outreach programs funded by United Way, Alberta Law Foundation and CSC. The Maritime region is the fastest growing segment of 7th Step at present.
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