'' Since L’Arche’s inception several hundred thousand young people have come to L’Arche communities around the world as assistants, to live with, care for, and build relationships with those who have an intellectual disability. They have become better people because of L’Arche. Many have found themselves transformed. Through their relationships with people who have intellectual disabilities they have discovered at a much deeper level who they are and how they would like to contribute to our world. They have grown into fully mature adults, able to face and grow through the challenges of life and to give leadership in many different fields.''
My time in L’Arche influenced me in a lot of ways, personally, spiritually and professionally. The international environment and the diversity that I had the privilege to experience enriched my perspective and challenged me to develop the ability to put myself into other positions and to understand the others point, which helps me a lot when dealing with people in my professional context. The life as a live-in assistant also called me to find a vocation where I don’t feel a strong separation between “life” and “work” but where the two are connected by my passion. But most importantly my L’Arche experience encouraged me to stay true to my values and to ask the “why”- and not just the “how”-questions, when navigating through the world of business. This has led to my growing interest in the concept of social business – solving social and ecological problems.
Social Work Student
Before I came to L’Arche I worked as a graphic artist in an advertising agency. I was happy but felt that I needed to try something different. So I came to L’Arche and lived a totally different life full of very important, beautiful, unique, deep, fulfilling experiences. I discovered that I didn’t want to go back to my job as a graphic artist. I wanted to work and be with people instead of computers - So I started all over again and began to study social work.
Laura Hurst Fidler
Assistant for children with autism
My time living at L’Arche has enriched my life and has taught me EVERY ONE has a story to share, a gift to be recognized, a song to sing, a dance to dance, moments of vulnerability, and a need for love respect and acceptance. Living at L’Arche has made my time with family, friends and co-workers rich and meaningful and I am thankful to all who have opened my eyes and heart to see a beautiful way to live life.