Turtle Lodge: Developmental Treatment Centre (formerly Cottage Seven)

Submitted on Friday, 01/24/2020 - 2:16 am

sspoppi moyis

In March  2021, Cottage Seven changed its name to Turtle Lodge: Developmental Treatment Centre, sspopii moyis in Blackfoot. This program was gifted the name by Casey Eagle Speaker, Hull’s Indigenous Resource Coordinator, through a naming ceremony. The name stems from the Blackfoot culture’s understanding of the word and how it represents the young people and the treatment in the program.
A turtle represents creation and motherhood; it is a symbol of longevity, endurance, persistence and the continuation of life. The turtle gently teaches us the art of adapting to new surroundings and environments.
“We believe that sspopii moyis beautifully describes the young people at Turtle Lodge: Developmental Treatment Centre, particularly with regards to the concept of resilience in the face of incredible odds and the capacity to adapt to new environments,” said Nadège De Pape, Program Director. “Turtle Lodge: Developmental Treatment Centre authentically represents the youth in the program, captures our commitment to Indigenous relationships, and honors the clinical work that is being done every day.”
“The Blackfoot names are significant in recognizing the ancestral lands of the Blackfoot Confederation that Hull is situated on, as is the city of Calgary,” said Eagle Speaker. “To have Indigenous inclusion is important to create a culturally safe place with humility, to give those we serve a sense of freedom and direction.”

About Turtle Lodge

Turtle Lodge: Developmental Treatment Centre is a therapeutic campus-based (and day) program for children and adolescents ages 6 to 17 years with developmental delay and severe behaviour/mental health problems.

Our program reduces problem behaviour, teaches adaptive behaviour and social skills and involves parents as change agents.

Children are taught to accept guidance, control their temper, cope better with daily stressors, care for their hygiene and possessions, and learn skills that improve their relations with others.

Turtle Lodge: Developmental Treatment Centre provides intense, individualized treatment within our campus-based program and helps children transition to home or to foster families through our day program. As the child’s behaviour improves and the parents feel more successful in managing their child’s behaviour, time at home is gradually increased.

In-home support and parent training are provided to all families during the transition which includes gradually increasing community inclusion, and recruiting long-term community wraparound supports.

Turtle Lodge: Developmental Treatment Centre Campus-based and Day Program is an integrated, multi-component psycho-educational treatment program for children and adolescents with developmental delay and severe behaviour and/or mental health problems. The Turtle Lodge: Developmental Treatment Centre program is based upon principles of neuro-develop and learning theory and utilizes evidence-based methods.

Children are taught to listen, appropriately communicate their needs and wants, care for themselves, and learn skills that will improve their relations with others.

The Turtle Lodge: Developmental Treatment Centre campus-based program operates seven days a week year-round.

Daily routines approximate that of an average child. On a typical day children care for their rooms and possessions, attend school, do their homework, play, watch TV, assist with domestic chores, go for walks, etc.

Teaching and counselling are provided in the context of these activities with every interaction serving as a clinical opportunity. Motivation for children to cooperate and accept guidance is established by providing privileges for positive behaviour.

As children become more responsible and show better self-control, the number of privileges they can earn increases and the amount of supervision they receive decreases.

Scheduling of activities is done to ensure that children are constructively engaged throughout the day and are provided with opportunities to generalize what they have learned. Weekday evenings children participate in community outings organized by the program or attend community activity clubs. Neuro-sequential sensory activities are provided throughout the day for children with a trauma history.

If children are unable to attend community schools they attend the Hull School located on the campus grounds. Children receive remedial instruction in core academic areas and are taught appropriate classroom behaviour.

The amount and type of involvement children have with their families is flexible and determined in collaboration with the parents and Treatment Team. As requested, families are provided with a full range of treatment and support services (in-home support, family therapy, child management training).

The progress of all the children in the Program is regularly monitored by psychiatric consultants at the Jack Fair Clinic.

Children participate in the Day Program when they are starting to transition home or to foster families.

The Day Program provides full-day center-based services to children. Emphasis is placed on generalizing and maintaining treatment gains through intense family work in the home and gradual community inclusion. Where indicated, the Day Program involves wraparound services to assist the families, recruit long term community and kinship supports.


  • Referrals to the Turtle Lodge: Developmental Treatment Centre Campus-based and Day Program are through Placement Services Office with Calgary Region Children’s Services.
  • The Campus-based Program will accept a limited number of out-of-region and out-of-province referrals for appropriate cases on a fee-for-service basis.

For more information contact

Nadege De Pape Program Director

  • 403-251-8040

Rob Hampshire Program Coordinator

  • 403-238-6228