Donation pushes L’Arche closer to fundraising goal – The London Free Press

The L’Arche London Gathering Place is one step closer to its campaign goal for its new community building.

The Westminster College Foundation donated $15,000 to L’Arche London campaign for their Gathering Place building. The building, which opened in September 2017, serves as a place to run meaningful day participation for individuals with intellectual disabilities or to host events like transit meetings and weddings.

“L’Arche is a community that welcomes people with and without disabilities,” said campaign chair Garry Dodman. “We work together mutually and support each other.”

The Gathering Place has raised 92 per cent of its $2.5-million campaign goal, leaving about $300,000 remaining to raise. The campaign was launched in 2013 and construction for the Gathering Place began two years later in 2015.

Dodman said Arthur and Sonia Labatt created a match opportunity where they will match donations up to $150,000 to help the campaign reach its goal. As a result, the $15,000 from Westminster College Foundation means $30,000 will be donated to the Gathering Place campaign.

The donations have come from a wide variety of sources, said campaign co-ordinator Ray Dilling.

“The facility has been built by the community, for the community,” Dilling said.

L’Arche London campaign chair, Garry Dodman (left) shakes hands with the Westminster College Foundation president, Roderick Singh. Singh’s foundation donated $15,000 to the L’Arche Gathering Place campaign. The donation will be matched by Arthur and Sonia Labatt for a total donation of $30,000. (SHANNON COULTER, The London Free Press)

The Foundation’s president, Roderick Singh, dropped off the cheque on Wednesday and toured the Gathering Place. This is the fourth time the Westminster College Foundation has donated to the Gathering Place.

“Everything that we were able to find out was nothing but praise for the organization,” Singh said. “I think that’s very well deserved from what I’ve seen today.”


L’Arche London is an organization of faith-based communities that creates homes, programs and services for people with intellectual disabilities. The 8,000-square-foot Gathering Place runs activities like arts and crafts, a kitchen for adaptive cooking classes and a music club on Mondays.

For more information about L’Arche London, visit