Though Daniel LeBlanc has a long professional career with the CN Railroad, and is involved in all aspects of rail-based logistic solutions for customers across multiple industries, he feels that one of his proudest achievements was creating a nonprofit organization whose mission is to provide appropriate long-term housing for individuals with intellectual disabilities, such as his own adult son. Together with other parents, Mr. LeBlanc established the foundation known as “L’Appart a moi” with the objective of making this dream a reality. The project consists of several bachelor-type condominiums that will be designed to meet the needs of these individuals. As Mr. LeBlanc explained, it is crucial for special needs individuals to have safe and secure housing so that they may fully contribute to society in their own ways. Though financing such projects is always challenging, the most critical aspect of the organization is having committed, well-intentioned people at the helm. Mr. LeBlanc considers himself fortunate to be working with just such a group of dedicated parents and individuals that share this common vision. He is also grateful for the support he receives from his employer.
Mr. LeBlanc believes that everyone is entitled to a long, full, and happy life, and he and his wife plan to give their three sons the best opportunities in life while making unique provisions for their son with special needs so he may maintain his independence. Once the first complex has been constructed, Mr. LeBlanc plans to share his journey with other parents, with the hope that the Foundation’s mission will be adopted by other groups across Canada.
From the website:This project was conceived by a group of parents wanting to offer a stable, permanent and safe living environment to their adult children with Down Syndrome or another intellectual disability.
These parents have always encouraged their adult children to develop their intellectual, physical and social skills to the best of their ability. They are an integrated part of their family and their community.
Having reached adulthood, they now wish to prove that they are ready and willing to face the challenges of independent living.
In order to help them reach this lifelong dream, L’appart à moi has chosen the following mission:
- To fight against poverty and vulnerability of young adults with an intellectual disability
- To offer a stable and permanent living environment in their own apartment
- To allow a natural transition while continuing their integration into society
Mr. LeBlanc received a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering in 1979. In his spare time, he is heavily involved with the Special Olympics. In three years, Mr. LeBlanc expects to have completed his first building. He will then lead the charge to build additional ones.
To keep track of the project’s progress, visit http://www.lappartamoi.ca.