Our History

In 1959, the United Church Hostel was established and funded by the United Church of Canada on the south-side of Edmonton. In 1964, the Hostel moved to its present location in downtown Edmonton where it was incorporated as the Jellinek Society.

Dr. E.M. Jellinek

The Jellinek Society is named after the American biostatistician and physiologist, Dr. E.M. Jellinek, who was the first researcher to understand alcoholism as a disease.

Dr. Jellinek’s ground-breaking 1946 study titled, The Disease Concept of Alcoholism, outlined the physiological phases of alcoholism, which helped to revolutionize our approach to addictions treatment.

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Former Home of Nellie McClung

The Jellinek Society’s recovery house was once the home of prominent women’s rights activist, Nellie McClung and her family from 1914 – 1923.

McClung is best known as a suffragist, author, and legislator. Having witnessed the negative effects of alcoholism on individuals and families, McCLung was also a prohibitionist who argued for strict controls regarding alcohol trade and consumption.

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