CBU CO-OP WORK TERM: House Assistant – L’Arche Cape Breton (8 month live-in position, Jan-Aug 2018)


Job Title: L’Arche Cape Breton: House Assistant – 8 month Co-op Work Term (January to August 2018)

Location: L’Arche Cape Breton in Orangedale, NS

Organization Description:

L’Arche is part of a worldwide network of over 120 communities where men and women with developmental disabilities and those who support them share life together. Every year, L’Arche communities welcome “assistants” who come to live, work and create home with people with intellectual disabilities. www.larche.ca.

Often called “the school of the heart,” L’Arche is a dynamic example of how people of different intellectual capacity, social origin and culture can live together.

Learn more about L’Arche Cape Breton by visiting our webpage: www.larchecapebreton.org

L’Arche is:

  • a way of life rather than a work place
  • a place of reflection and action
  • self discovery through being with people
  • a place where I am valued and appreciated for who I am
  • a place where practical skills develop in conjunction with a willingness to be challenged and an openness to change

Job Description:

At L’Arche we reframe the client/caregiver model by promoting mutual relationships. In our homes, people with a variety of abilities live and share the fun and challenges of life together by supporting each other with gifts and talents which we all possess. Your role as a L’Arche House Assistant will be to share your energy with the people you will be living with in various challenging and fun ways, from household tasks, accompanying someone to an appointment, helping someone prepare for the day, cooking a meal together, to enjoying a good concert, and developing long lasting relationships.


  • Must be recognized by your University as a Co-op Work Term student and returning to full-time studies.
  • Because mutual relationships are essential to our professional and personal lives, experience at L’Arche has a broad application in the working field.
  • Former L’Arche House Assistants have gone on to be lawyers, teachers, actors, social workers, doctors and even business consultants.


  • Approximately $2,2160 net monthly earnings (deductions would include Federal Tax, EI, CPP, and Room & Board)


Shannon Seager worked at L’Arche for her Cooperative Education Work Term and says:
“The last 4 months have been the most challenging but more importantly, the most rewarding time of my life. The experience I had here at L’Arche Hamilton has changed my perspective of myself and the world. I have discovered the kind of person I want to be and the kind of life I would like to live.”


Basic Information for Co-op Students:

  • This is a Live-In position with us. As part of your cover letter, please confirm that understand that this position is a live-in position, whereby you share life as you would in a normal setting with a family with individuals who have developmental disabilities.
  • Live-in House Assistants are entitled to eight days away each month, scheduled in accordance with your fellow assistants and NS Labour Regulations. As an assistant, one does not go home after a day of work, because home is also the place where one works.
  • Mentorship: There will be regular one-to-one mentoring sessions for first 3 months of the placement (once every two weeks) and then less frequently afterwards. These are opportunities to discuss the rewards and challenges of the placement.
  • Personal Time: 2-3 hours during the day.
  • Time Away: One and a half days away per week + one long weekend per month
  • Training: Assistants in our homes receive training in Fire & Life Safety, Food Handlers, Medication Administration & Awareness and specific orientation to community policies & procedures.
  • Pre-employment requirements: Criminal reference check (vulnerable sector), First Aid & CPR.

Application Details

The Co-op Option at Cape Breton University is currently offered to Arts, Business and Science students as a 3-credit Experiential Learning elective.

To learn more about the Co-op Option, please visit our webpage and/or contact Carly Turnbull: Student Placement Officer at carly_turnbull@cbu.ca for more information on incorporating this opportunity into your degree program.

Deadline for applications is November 17th, 2017 at 4pm.