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L'Arche Kilkenny

L'Arche Kilkenny

  • L'Arche Workshop
  • Cluain Aoibhinn
  • Fairgreen Lane
  • Callan, Co. Kilkenny
  • Ireland
  • Tel/Fax: +353 (0) 56 772 5628
  • Email:

Established in 1978 with four Core Members and their Assistants, L’Arche Kilkenny was the first L'Arche community in Ireland.  Jean Vanier and his sister Thrésé were personally involved in its foundation, together with the people of Kilmoganny, Kilkenny.  Today, Callan town has become host to the larger part of the community and is on a main bus route to Kilkenny city, Cork and Dublin.

During the past thirty-plus years the community has grown so that today L’Arche Kilkenny includes four residential houses, a Café, four Independent Living Core Member houses, a garden workshop and a craft workshop.  Our houses are home to 14 people with an intellectual disability and their international volunteer assistants.  We also offer a respite facility. 

L'Arche Kilkenny Members at their new houses

Recently four of our long-term Core Members, Nora, Helen, Mary and Frances, achieved independent living status. They are very happy to have achieved such a major step in their lives.

Our Workshops & Cafe

Our workshops give meaning and are a teaching venue for twenty-four people, our core members, enabled by employed staff.  Café L’Arche is a special project, where our core members interact with the local community in a safe and comfortable environment.  Along with offering healthy eating options, it also provides a wonderful opportunity to foster public awareness concerning the ability, welcome and friendship of our core members and assistants.

Our Community

L'Arche Kilkenny Members

We are a community of people who mutually share our daily life and work together.  We support our Core Members’ overall well being, through enablement, advocacy, promotion of self-advocacy, social interactions, spiritual enablement and with attention to personal well being and health.

L'Arche Kilkenny Members

We promote friends with people who are different – in culture, language, beliefs, religious affiliation, intellectual ability.  This requires a flexibility and openness of heart and mind.  We welcome people young and old, with or without intellectual disabilities, all have their part to play according to their own particular and individual gifts. 

Though lived in a simple way, faith is an integral aspect of our daily community life.  While the faith tradition of the community is within the Irish Catholic context, we welcome and respect each member’s faith tradition or none.  We accept the challenge of creating unity within our diversity.  Being a community of faith, mutual relationships and trust in God, are at the heart of our life together.  We pray together during the celebration of Mass and other Christian Services, meal times, quiet prayer times, and special times in the Christian calendar.

Our Members' New Homes

Four new homes, just for Nora, Mary, Frances and Helen.

L'Arche Kilkenny Houses

We wish our members every happiness in their new homes and look forward to many happy days with them in the future.

An Solas - home to Paddy Joe and Chantelle.

L'Arche Kilkenny Houses