A L'Arche community is...
… mutual relationships: At the heart of L’Arche communities are relationships between people with and without intellectual disabilities. A respectful relationship between people who treat each other as of equal value provides security, allowing for growth, personal development and freedom to become more fully the people we want to be. Most importantly, mutual relationships foster the acceptance of each person as a unique and valuable individual, whatever his or her abilities or disabilities.
… spirituality: From its first community, founded in France in the Roman Catholic tradition, many other communities have been established in various cultural and religious traditions. Today, faith life continues to be an essential element of all L’Arche communities, which may be rooted in a particular faith tradition or have an ecumenical or an inter-faith character. Communities are respectful of the particular faith traditions of people who come to the community and seek to support members to deepen in their own faith experience and values, whether they situate themselves within or outside a religious affiliation.
… know-how: More than 40 years of experience and cooperative work with doctors, psychologists, social workers and other professionals have enabled L’Arche communities to develop strong competencies and a high standard of quality in the field of care-giving. In several countries, L’Arche is called upon by governments for advice on policy formation.
… community life: Living with others emphasises what a person can accomplish, give and learn. Just as in a family, all members of the community are responsible for the group’s well-being, be it at home, in a workshop or a day programme, through cooking or washing up, through a helping hand, a smile or a joke.