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Assistants Profiles

Sarah Tuck - L'Arche Hamilton

 

Sarah Tuck is part of the L’Arche Hamilton Community. Sarah has studied economics, criminal justice and public policy at the University of Guelph and first came to L’Arche during her summer breaks from University. Sarah spent three summers as an Assistant in the community and eventually returned to a full time role in the community after finishing her graduate studies. She has been a House Leader and today, Sarah is the Homes Coordinator for the L’Arche Hamilton Community.

 

What drew you to L’Arche?  "I wanted a different experience.  I was drawn to the idea of building community and living with people.  I wasn’t too sure at the beginning, but, after my first summer in L’Arche, I kept coming back—I could see how much I had grown and learned.  And, it’s unexpected growth and change.  I experienced this in such a short time, and it captivated me.  At university, you are really focused on yourself and what you need to do—it’s all about you.  At L’Arche, it was the relationships with others that I could see as important.  One of the closest relationships I had was with someone who needed a lot of support—that relationship really touched me."

What do you do in your free time? "I volunteer with an organization called 'Circles of Support and Accountability.'  It’s a support group for young offenders.  I also like going to the gym, playing sports—especially volleyball in the summer.  And, I’m really involved with my Church."

What are you most passionate about? "I’m most passionate about discovery and learning and these are things that I love about my role.  I can see my own growth and I know that I am still changing.  It’s also something I see in welcoming new Assistants and Core Members to our community—you get to see the transformation.  I think this is something that I’m drawn to in all I do in my life—new discoveries and new learnings."

What is the most inspiring experience you have had in L’arche? "When I was a House Leader I helped welcome two new Core Members to my home a few years ago.  One of the Core Members could not get through one of our annual meetings because he could not handle hearing appreciations about himself from others—he could not accept these things and would leave the room upset and crying.  This year, for the first time, he was able to stay, and not only hear those appreciations, but, he was also able to accept and agree with what others see in him."

Who is your role model and why? "Mary, one of the first Core Members who helped welcome me to L’Arche.  She is outgoing and the perfect balance of everything.  She is confident and at the same time vulnerable and knows when to ask for help.  She is the person who kept me connected to L’Arche.  When I went back to university after the summer, it was Mary who called me every week.  She is an important teacher for me."

What do you want other people to know about L’Arche? "I want others to know how much you will be changed.  I think we all come wanting to help others and do something good and then we realize that we are the ones who get a lot of help.  Be ready to be changed by L’Arche."

What is it like to carry leadership in L’Arche? "I loved my experiences of living in a L’Arche home and dedicating myself to being with people.  But, as time progressed I realized that I have gifts that I could and I want to use.   I have an economics and policy background that I was already using to support my home and House Leader in L’Arche, so, it seemed like a natural fit then to give my gifts to the community as a House Leader and now as a Homes Coordinator."