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Support - L'Arche Chantal, Haiti
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National Leader of Canada since 2009
Experience in L'Arche: I am a member of L'Arche Greater Vancouver. Over the years I have held various roles within the community the last one being the community leader from 1992-1998.
Professional experience: Prior to coming to L'Arche I worked at the Vancouver School of Theology Library in the technical services department.
Click here to contact Hollee
Vice-National Leader of Canada since June 2013
Experience in L’Arche: I have been a member of L’Arche Beloeil since 1995, and I was an assistant and House Leader there until 1999. From 2007 to 2010, I was Vice Regional Leader, and for 7 months of that time I was Interim Regional Leader.
Professional experience : I trained in Communications and Social Work at university. I then worked in a Local Community Services Centre with people who were losing their independence, and in various community organisations in Montreal (socio-professional integration, mental health and homelessness). In 2010-2011, I spent six months as a resident at the Upaya Centre, a Zen Buddhist retreat and training centre in New Mexico.
Click here to contact Gabrielle
National Leader of the USA since 2015
Experience in L’Arche : I got to know L'Arche whilst I was a student at Université Laval in Québec, Canada. In 2004, I was asked to found L'Arche International's Office of Communications. I spent four years in this role, partly in Québec, Canada and partly in Brussels, Belgium. In Québec, I lived as an assistant in the community. In 2010, L'Arche called me back to organize the 2012 International General Assembly in Atlanta. Today, my wife and our two children are members of L'Arche Atlanta
Click here to contact Tina
Deputy Director of the USA since 2016
Experience in L’Arche : to come
National Leader of France since 2011
Experience in L’Arche: I originally joined L’Arche Paris, France, as a conscientious objector in 1984, staying for over two years as a house assistant. Since then, I served for some time as administrator in the community, as well as Regional Coordinator, before taking up my present role in 2011. Throughout, I have remained a member of my community.
Professional Experience: My major professional experience outside L'Arche has been in running a business enterprise for 18 years, but I also worked for a short time in a communication agency.
Click here to contact Stephan
National Leader of the UK since 2007
Experience in L'Arche: I am a member of L’Arche Preston along with my family, Clare, Brendan and Aidan. I came to L’Arche Liverpool in 1986 for a year and then returned in 1990. I carried roles of Assistant, House Leader and Assistants’ Coordinator in Liverpool. I moved with my family to help found the new community in Preston, my home city, in 1997. I carried the role of Community Leader in Preston until 2007 when I took up the new role of National Leader in the UK. I was the delegate coordinator for L’Arche in Uganda between 2006 and 2009.
Professional experience: My degree is in law, and I have also undertaken studies in philosophy, theology, counselling, management and organisational development.
Click here to contact John
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A member of L’Arche does a TEDx event
A TEDx event took place at Issy-les-Moulineaux, France, on the subject “Living Together”. The organizers wanted to hear about the expertise of L’Arche on that topic. They first asked Benoit Cazalaà, community leader of L’Arche in Paris, who in turn suggested Maxence Requillard. Who could be better than a person living with the experience of a disability to speak about “living together” in a L’Arche home?
Maxence prepared his talk with Benoit. He used preparation techniques, such as preparation notes. On the big day, his turn to speak was at the end of the day. He was able to wake up everyone in the room by initiating contact with ease and flair.
His original thought came out fluently: Living together is an art.
What is that art? It all begins with the art of dealing with people when they are in bad humor. It is the art of having each other’s back when going out in public. It is the art of talking with each other while sharing meals with everyone. It is the art of having roots in one’s culture and leisure activities. It is the art of celebrating to keep up contacts… of enjoying champagne together!
Signs of hope in Syria
In the struggle against the absurd and despair, the community of Al Safina in Syria continue their workshop, and to host, visit and help refugees.
The conflict is close to the neighbourhood of the community: bombs, almost daily gunfire and deafening planes. The year has been charged with painful events. For example, Karim’s village was destroyed and his father, like many others, has emigrated to join a son in the USA, his stepmother is a refugee. The celebration of Christmas was a remedy to deadly sorrow.
In Mina (the workshop), 25 to 30 people come every morning in spite of transport problems. The paper workshop specializes in cardboard. The production, which is very good, was exhibited with success in a grand hotel. Young students from the Opera: pianists, flutists, oud and kanoun players surprised everyone by playing. Friends and social ties are essential.
Since the inflow of refugees from the outskirts of Damascus, the community has been engaged: a group of young people with intellectual disabilities from Doueila come several times a week to Mina. Assistants help another centre in Bab Moussalla. Lina and assistants from the home visit refugee families living in schools. Marie organizes the payment of rent for certain.
Faced with so much misfortune, there are so many small signs of hope.