Mr. Speaker, this weekend, the West Island Association for the Intellectually Handicapped will celebrate its 60th anniversary with a block party at its historic building in Pointe-Claire in my riding of Lac-Saint-Louis.
Sixty years ago, parents who were looking to build a better community for their children came together with vision and determination to create a network of resources for those with intellectual disabilities and autism. Today, WIAIH promotes independence, health and social skills through a variety of fitness, education and leisure programs.
The philosophy of the West Island Association for the Intellectually Handicapped is informed by great respect for the notion that community-based living enables people with disabilities to achieve their potential for growth and self-fulfilment.
When I think of WIAIH, I think of Jean Vanier, who said, “When we love and respect people, revealing to them their value, they can begin to come out from behind the walls that protect them.” Happy birthday to WIAIH, and congratulations for 60 years of fostering hope and inclusion.