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March 21st is International Down Syndrome Day.
Here’s a toast to all those people with Down Syndrome who enrich our lives.
People with Down’s syndrome are recognized for their significant contribution to peace.
The 2014 Public Peace Prize in the «Local Peacemaker » category was awarded to all people with Down’s syndrome for their « real ability to spread peace to those around them ». According to their friends and relatives «persons with Down’s syndrome develop a predisposition for peacemaking which blossoms when offered a favorable context. »
Jean Vanier agrees wholeheartedly « My experience in L’Arche helped me to discover that those who are weak, small, disabled are also prophets of peace. By their presence and gestures they open our hearts to understanding and compassion rather than awaken fear. In a mysterious way they break down the barriers that surround our hearts. »
...if on the first day of the new year, people from all over the world celebrated together by exchanging their wishes for peace… and each person made a resolution to create peace in their life, their home or their community…. We could help make a peaceful world!
Jean Vanier on Bullying
Jean Vanier has an important message for schools in this month of bullying awareness.
Fall 2013 Impact Bulletin
The Transformative impact of L’Arche initiatives in secondary schools and Beyond
Secondary students in some provinces learn about L’Arche and Jean Vanier in their curriculum. For example, the new Ontario Grade 10 History and Civics courses ask students about the contribution of L’Arche to the lives of people who have disabilities in Canada and to Canadian society.
“The greatness of a human being is to move from Me to We,” Jean Vanier tells WE DAY’s 20,000 student leaders and educators who filled the Air Canada Centre in Toronto on Sept. 20th. Here is the full-length version of his video message. Check the Education page (tab above) in the coming months for other short videos and curriculum content on Jean Vanier, L'Arche and disability history responding to new Ministry of Education courses in Canadian Studies and Social Sciences.
Jean Vanier sent this video greeting to the North American Interfaith Network 25th anniversary conference (NAIN Connect), held at the University of Toronto in mid-August 2013. The conference theme was “In Diversity is our Strength.” The conference drew together people from a variety of religions across North America and Mexico. Sue Mosteller gave the keynote address, sharing stories of how relationships with individuals who have an intellectual disability have opened us to the gifts of those who may seem very different.
L’Arche at the Summer Institute on Theology and Disability
The international gathering of the Summer Institute on Theology and Disability was held at the University of Toronto this summer. Several L’Arche members attended, and L’Arche contributed to this interfaith conference in various ways—organizationally and financially, through the worship leadership of the Spirit Movers dance troupe and through a dinner and evening at the L’Arche Daybreak community (pictured here). One participant noted, “It was clear that Jean Vanier is the reference point for the whole field of theology and disability.” The Canadian contingent met during the conference and identified a name. “Canadian Theology & Disability Network” is a placeholder.
L’Arche Canada Elects its Leaders for the Next Four Years
At the end of May , delegates from the 29 Canadian L’Arche communities met in Vancouver for a General Assembly where they approved a mandate and elected its national leaders for the next four years. Hollee Card was chosen to continue as National Leader, Gabrielle Beaulieu to be the new Vice National Leader, and John Rietschlin, to continue as President of the L’Arche Canada Board of Directors. Hollee has a long history in L’Arche and has been in national leadership since 1999. Gabrielle was in L’Arche Beloeil as an assistant and house leader and later was Vice Regional Leader and Interim Leader in Quebec. She is a professional social worker. John has given leadership on the Board for some time. He is Manager of the Older Adults Team in the Social Research Division at Human Resources Skills Development Canada (HRSDC). Delegates included L’Arche members with intellectual disabilities. The Assembly concluded with a festive meal and evening.
New Jean Vanier Videos Clips for Schools
In July, grade 5 student Maya Pot travelled to Trosly-Breuil, France, with her dad, Warren, to help with videotaping Jean Vanier on themes related to creating a welcoming school culture and a better world--themes that are important to Canadian elementary and secondary schools and teachers and parents. There are 10 videos in 2 series, one more general and one on the theme of Hospitality, which is the "virtue for the month of September" in many Catholic schools.
Diploma in Intellectual Disability Studies Receives National Award
The Diploma in Intellectual Disability Studies developed by St.F.X.U. with significant L'Arche Canada input and involvement received an “Award of ” from CAUCE (the "Canadian Association for University Continuing Education") at its annual conference held this year in Saskatoon. In writing about its decision to bestow the award, CAUCE's Awards Committee said that they were “deeply impressed by how the Program enriches the lives of those with intellectual disabilities, and the Program's community partnership approach."
For more information about the Diploma in Intellectual Disability Studies, click here
L'Arche Opens a Barrier-Breaking Cafe in Winnipeg
On April 10th, L'Arche Winnipeg opened a 'barrier-breaking' café at 119 Regent Ave. West in Transcona.
L’Arche Tova Café will provide job opportunities for people with a developmental or intellectual disability and give visibility to the L'Arche community in Winnipeg.
Learn more on CBC News ...
Celebrating the Art of L'Arche Members
An important way to love another person is to provide opportunity for them to give their gift. We want each person in a L’Arche community to be recognized for their unique way of giving and contributing. Discover in the last issue of the Impact Bulletin published by the L'Arche Canada Foundation the remarkable gift of four L’Arche members who are artists.
The UN Declares March 21st
"World Down Syndrome Day"
For this world premiere of Down Syndrom Day, L'Arche Canada salutes Shilongo from Namibia, Samridhi from Nepal, Lily from New Zealand, Onyinyechi form Nigeria, Muhammad from Pakistan, Rafael from Peru, Jan from Poland, Vera from Portugal, Sonya from Russia, Khaled fromm Saudi Arabia, Franziska form Gernmany, Pavel from Estonia, Thameez from South Africa, Zumra from Sri Lanka, Fredrika from Sweden, Amina from Tanzania, Wognanssan from Togo, Grace from the UK, Nina from the USA, Isabella from Venezuela, Gabriel from Austria, Ela from Bosnia, Bianca from Columbia, Louis from France, Logan from Canada ... and the more than 40,000 people living with Down syndrome in Canada. (Play this videoclip to learn more about them).
Let us in, I want to learn ...
Production : Down Syndrome International
C'est ça la vie! (That’s Life) L'Arche presented on Radio-Canada television