Changing the world, one heart at a time.

Homes & Day Programs

In L’Arche, people who have intellectual disabilities and those who come to assist share life and daytime activities together in family-like settings that are integrated into local neighbourhoods.  Our homes at L’Arche encourage and invite each of us to enter into relationships where we discover our mutuality and interdependence.

Each of us participates in the daily tasks of creating a home together. These include such things as preparing meals, washing dishes, cleaning our rooms, taking responsibility for personal care, and managing our individual finances. Additionally, as adults coming from various life and family experiences, we learn about each other’s uniqueness and differences and how these can enrich our lives together.

There is a lot of visiting between the multiple households at L’Arche Antigonish and we often welcome our many friends and family to celebrations that make up our community life. We recognize in living together with our differences, we can become a little sign of hope for others.

We have 5 homes (Covenant, Emmaus, Hope, Dixie, and Jubilee) and 1 supervised apartment in L’Arche Antigonish. Our homes are located and integrated into the core of Antigonish.

As a L’Arche community, our mission challenges us to not only create homes but equally appropriate our daily activities and vocational opportunities which support and encourage the members at L’Arche to develop skills and greater inclusion into the larger Antigonish community. L’Arche believes that meaningful work or daytime activities are very important to a person’s dignity. We have developed three distinct daytime programs, Cornerstone, Horizons, and The Studio, to meet the needs of many individuals in L’Arche and other adults with intellectual disabilities within the larger community.

The Studio

The Studio is the home base for Hearts & Hands, the art program within L’Arche Antigonish. We are a group of 50 people, L’Arche members and volunteers from the Antigonish community and university, who come together to create artwork. This includes painting, drawing, weaving, papermaking, embroidery, needle felting, photography, music, creating stepping stones and collages, and music. The list continues to grow.  The Studio is a place of belonging where everyone finds his or her our voice, fulfillment and joy through self-discovery and self-expression. We enjoy working together as a team, trying new things, deepening friendships, having fun, and appreciating and celebrating each other’s gifts. We exhibit and sell our art at The Studio and in other venues and participate in a variety of events and projects in the wider community.

Horizons

The Horizons Day Program consists of members from our L’Arche homes and folks who still live with their families.  The program has a wide variety of activities with special emphasis on wellness, literacy, paper making and art work.  Our daily wellness program includes walking, swimming, skating, dancing, playing music, practising yoga and participating in individualized exercise programs.  The program provides authentic literacy through a range of learning experiences, such as reading, journaling, scrapbooking, connecting with pen pals, technology training, and counting money for deposits. We are committed to providing a positive space where various forms of communication are celebrated, including augmentative communication and sign language. Horizons is the hub of L’Arche Antigonish for work placements, securing meaningful experiences for both our participants and local businesses. We also provide pick up and delivery service with Tim’s Truck and operate a weekly bottle drive in support of our sister community, L’Arche Santo Domingo.

Cornerstone

Cornerstone is the daytime program for our aging L’Arche members who still enjoy a more recreational approach to daily life.  The program is located in Hope House at 91 Hawthorne Street.  We enjoy baking, playing games, doing puzzles, visiting, practicing yoga, watching television, and there is always a chance to catch a nap.  Our members also connect with the other L’Arche programs for baking, dance, drama, literacy and art, and with the wider elder community of Antigonish through the R.K. MacDonald sing song.  Cornerstone welcomes many volunteers from StFX University and our elders teach them about L’Arche and share many stories with them.

Ever faithful, the members of Cornerstone make dessert for our community gatherings and hold our community and its members in daily prayer – nurturing body and spirit.