Why live in a L’Arche Community?  

Good question! And the answer really depends on you and your situation. Our UK assistants join us from a range of backgrounds and at varying stages in life. Some stay for a short time and move on to another career with a new outlook; some stay with L'Arche for years in different roles, having found belonging in a new way of living. Nobody leaves empty handed. 

Living in a L’Arche Community as an assistant is an intense experience that requires a big commitment. It asks you to immerse yourself in a lively community and to slow down at the same time. It brings routine and the unexpected. You’ll live in an alternative, inclusive model of society whilst gaining a deep understanding of social care in UK today. You’ll develop deep, meaningful connections with individuals, and also gain a community for life. 

Everyone will gain something different  

Are you considering how to best use your gap year before university? Or have you just graduated and are unsure what’s next?  Are you contemplating a career break? In search of new purpose? Perhaps you’re coming to the end of your career, but not ready for retirement just yet? Wherever you join us from, you can expect to gain… 

L’Arche welcomes people from all around the world, and those requiring a visa to join us from overseas can apply for the "Tier 5 Temporary Worker – Charity Worker" visa to join us as live-in assistants for 12 months. It may also be worth applying for the Youth Mobility Scheme if you are eligible. If you would like to discuss your visa options further, please contact [email protected], and we’ll do our best to advise! 

Why move to the UK for L’Arche?  

Our international assistants join us from a range of backgrounds and at varying stages in life. Living in a L’Arche Community as an assistant is an intense experience that requires a big commitment. It asks you to immerse yourself in a lively community and to slow down at the same time. It brings routine and the unexpected. You’ll live in an alternative, inclusive model of society whilst gaining a deep understanding of social care in UK today. You’ll develop deep, meaningful connections with individuals, and also gain a community for life. 

As an international assistant, you will usually spend 12 months living in a community with people with and without learning disabilities. You'll have the opportunity to develop your soft skills, deepen your spirituality and explore a new part of the world. There are two visas you can apply for if you'd like to come to the UK to join L'Arche: