In a world that values winning and coming first, L'Arche communities are places where people can discover who they are, not just what they can do.
There are 11 L'Arche Communities in the UK where people with and without learning disabilities share life together, living and/or working in community. All are part of the International Federation of L’Arche which was founded by Templeton Laureate Jean Vanier.
Although grounded in the Christian tradition, L'Arche Communities welcome people of all faiths and none: our vision is a world where all belong. For more information about L’Arche go to www.larche.org.uk.
Like other support providers we are regulated and inspected to ensure a high quality of provision.
Each Community is very different.
L’Arche Ipswich opened in May 2006 when Tim Mason, the founding director, welcomed the first ‘core members’ to a large house on the corner of Warrington Road and Ivry Street. Many years of support and hard work by a group of families and friends, and a local committee of L’Arche UK, the national charity, led to the establishment of the initial community and is now home to 6 people with learning disabilities and 6 assistants. Our house is situated in a pleasant and quiet area of Ipswich near Christchurch Park, and very close to the centre of town. The house has spacious common areas and a large garden.
The house has become a lively community where people with and without learning disabilities work and live together; where everyone is equal, differences are accepted and talents are recognised and celebrated. We’re committed to developing personal responsibility and maturity in a community setting.
Our structure includes a local board of committee members, a management and office team, people with learning disabilities and assistants.
We aim to:
- Value each individual, ensuring that we see people with disabilities having as much to give as to receive
- Create a sense of belonging, not just to L'Arche but to the wider community and beyond that the world
- Be open to people's own spiritual needs, enabling them to draw on the resources that can provide
What makes L’Arche different is the attention we pay to building relationships and a sense of belonging.
In L’Arche we celebrate people with learning disabilities and build circles of support around them. We go beyond basic needs to attend to people’s emotional and spiritual lives. Communities around the world share this common philosophy and approach while reflecting the ethnic, cultural and religious composition of the areas in which they exist.