The duty to remember, from one generation to the next
The year 2019 marks the 20th anniversary of The Lighthouse Children and Families. It is almost a generation and it is certainly 4 or 5 media generations (we consider, that a TV generation for example lasts 3 to 5 years; the time for a child to finish his primary school). Nowadays, for a child at the Lighthouse, the daily routine is moving at high speed via social media. A publication on Instagram lasts a mere 24 hours, before being forgotten. Twenty years ago, the smart kid was the one who had access to Internet and knew how to publish his own content to share with a large community.
Yet, yesterday as today, the children of the Lighthouse are not so different from other children: they live in the present moment. Capturing a moment of everyday life, today as it was 20 years ago, is achieved through the magic of a well-established strategy at the Lighthouse. The staff, collaborators and volunteers who surround the children and their families know how use drawings, arts and crafts, artwork with enamel on copper, a photo or a video to create moments of pleasure and eternity. Thus, at the Lighthouse, we learn to cultivate lasting pleasurable memories.
On the evening of the Annual General Meeting (AGM) of members on June 13, 2019, the Lighthouse community displayed all its sensitivity to celebrate beautiful moments from the past and name pillars of the Lighthouse that now belong to its memory. During 2018-2019, the co-founder of the Lighthouse, Nicole Marcil-Gratton and Freddy Wilson Estevan, an orderly and a great friend of the Lighthouse’s children passed away, leaving the large Lighthouse community in mourning. To mark the 20th anniversary of the Lighthouse and to celebrate the lives of hundreds of children that Mrs. Marcil-Gratton and Mr. Estevan have touched, generous donors have made symbolic gestures of extraordinary compassion. These actions were presented at the closing of the AGM.
Mr. and Mrs. Demers offered to the Lighthouse the masterpiece La lumière du Phare, produced by the artist and master enameller Bernard Seguin-Poirier, to underline the most difficult moments of everyday life, so that each family knows that they are supported by a large community. In the courtyard of the Lighthouse, near the swings, a donor planted a magnificent tree in homage to the children who have fun until the very end. Flanked by a plaque graciously donated by the Friends of the Botanical Garden, this Ginkgo Biloba, one of the most resilient in the plant kingdom, will look after children and their families for many years to come.
The unveiling of these symbols took only a few minutes, however their reassuring effect will be long-lasting and they will remain visible and tangible to the community for a long time. During the AGM, another gesture promised to leave its mark; to honour the memory of Mr. Freddy Wilson Estevan, the Lighthouse Executive Committee announced the creation of the Freddy Wilson Estevan Award. Presented annually, as part of the recognition activities at the Holiday Signing Event, this award will recognize the excellence of an employee's work on the reviews of his peers, for what Freddy so passionately embodied : the love of children and caring for families. Thus, in Freddy's name, which will be repeated annually with dedication and respect, will be added the name of a new person. It is about preserving memories at the Lighthouse. It is a duty to the community and a source of inspiration for each of its members, so that the Lighthouse’s values remain more vibrant than ever across generations.
- The Ginkgo Biloba and the masterpiece La lumière du Phare