L'Arche Community in Ukraine celebrated the 50th anniversary of L'Arche International by the following events:
In October, "L'Arche-Kovcheh" Community held a conference "Models of socialization of people with disabilities based on the experience of L'Arche communities” in a frame of 7-th Ecumenical Social Week.
Representatives of L'Arche communities from around the world were invited to participate in the discussion of this topic and share their experiences. In particular, Michelle Dormal from France made a brief excursus into the history of the founding of "L'Arche" and its spreading in the world. Hedas Malinkauskas, the Leader of L'Arche Community in Lithuania together with core member Mantas shared Lithuanian experiences of inclusion of people with intellectual disabilities. A National Leader of L'Arche in Poland Barbara Wojcik spoke about cooperation with the state and development of projects aimed at preparation of the national standards of functioning of such communities, as well as in what ways L'Arche can affect the elaboration of these standards in the country.
Oksana Mahura, the Leader of the "L'Arche-Kovcheh" Community talked about the Ukrainian realities of "L'Arche" and its prospects for the future. The assistant and core members of the workshop “Nazareth” ended this round table discussion with their very creative and inspirational sharings.
Representatives of various government institutions and other organizations as well as students were invited to participate in the round table discussion. It was a deep and inspiring experience for all of the participants.
Besides the conference mentioned above, a singing flash mob was held in mid-October. Core members, assistants, volunteers, parents gathered in the center of the city and used sign language while singing together the song "This is me, who builds the community ..."
The purpose of the flash mob was to proclaim one of the principles of the Charter of L'Arche communities: "Whatever are the gifts or restriction of people, all of them are united in one humanity. Each and every one is unique and has sacred value, and everyone has the same dignity and the same rights".
The event received a lot of media attention. Here is a link to the video: