For many years, ASF has been engaged with the Arche community in Antwerp- a community of people living together with and without mental disabilities. In 2012, ASF visited for the first time as guests in a summer camp.
They own and live in three houses in two adjacent neighborhoods, each with 5-8 inhabitants with disabilities and a workshop, where most of the residents work during the day, play sports, do crafts, cook…
We are able to gain insight into this loving and humanizing oasis. We came to beautify the living space and were completely integrated as a part of the community.
So we arrived just in time- a group with the desire to work. Some work would be difficult and some easy, but everyone brought with them time in hand, which the Arche is so often missing. Three large projects were on our agenda: making a bike shed for the Foyer Windroos, making a bike shed and reallocating the chicken coop in the Foyer Roeach and the insulation of the heating pipes in the Foyers Madonna and Windhoek. I think that each of us fell in love with one of these projects.
Our work was colorful and each person was able to find a meaningful and motivating place. We were all exhausted and proud. The Arche was immensely grateful for cooked, sang and praised us daily to thank us for our work.
Helene Utpatel and Käthe Krokenberger, Teamers
Summer Camp at Arche, Antwerp, Belgium, 18.08-01.09.2012