Long term residential support includes residential rehabs and supported accommodation. Find out which one is best for you.


There are two types of long term residential support:

  • Residential rehabilitation
  • Supported accommodation

Residential rehabilitation (often called rehab) is where you live with a group of other young people for up to 6 months. In this time you live in a contained, drug-free community. Structured activities are offered daily to help you learn about and make changes to your drug and alcohol use.

Supported accommodation programs are different to rehab. Even though you  still get help to learn about and make changes to your drug or alcohol use, you live more independently. You usually stay in rental accommodation provided by the program and participate in a program of tailored support.


Residential rehab:

  • Strategies and Support to control or cease drug or alcohol use
  • counselling
  • supportive contained community 
  • Recreational activities
  • Support accessing work and training.
  • Living skills


Supported accommodation:

  • Independent living skills
  • General support
  • Referrals and links to other help if needed
  • Support to access or remain in school/work or training
  • Strategies and Support to control or cease drug or alcohol use



Residential rehabilitation:

Rehabs usually need quite a bit of information from you prior to you being admitted. This is usually to make sure you’ll be safe and comfortable in a program with lots of other young people. So you can expect to meet with the workers first, to talk about the program, what it offers and what you want to get out of it. Rehabs are usually a bit different to short term withdrawal units-they don’t usually offer supported withdrawal care so prior to actually staying at a rehab you’ll probably have to demonstrate in some way that you haven’t used drugs or alcohol for a short while. Urine drug screens are usually the way this is done. The video we've included in this article is about Birribi, a specific youth Rehab. It gives an idea about what you can expect at a youth rehab.

Supported accom:

Depending on the program you may stay in a house or flat with other young people, with a lead tenant or on your own. You’ll be supported to sign a lease and you’ll be in regular contact with a support worker. Similarly to rehabs you may be required to provide Urine drug screens prior, or at times during the program. Most Supported accommodation programs will have a limited time you can stay of about 12 months. 


Long-term rehabilitation means you live away from your normal circumstances for quite a while. It’s a pretty intense support option, so its best suited for you if:

  • Your drug or alcohol use is feeling out of control
  • You are motivated to make some changes and spend significant time drug free.
  • You are not working or going to school. 

Supported accommodation means you are almost living independently. So it’s also best if you:

  • Don’t need constant support and supervision to manage your drug or alcohol use.
  • Have some confidence you can live  independently.