A special evening in support of some very special young people!
for Pearson News by Cindy Finn
It was a warm and sunny late summer day – perfect conditions to visit a local vineyard all in support of a great cause. On September 21, 2023, Light a Dream hosted a wine tasting evening held at Vignoble Souffle de Vie. This lovely winery, tucked away at the corner of the island in Senneville, was the perfect location for friends, students, and colleagues to gather to savour some local wines and socialize, all while raising funds for a very special non-profit organization known as Light a Dream (LAD).
Light a Dream is a non-profit organization that supports neurodiverse young adults in learning authentic job training skills and deepening socialization opportunities. Light a Dream operates a boutique located in the Valois Village where Lester B. Pearson students and alumni work to make, market, and sell candles and other accessories to the public. A variety of products and hand painted bags are sold at reasonable prices and allow student to showcase their strong artistic talents. Local organizations can also book candle-making workshops and other special events at the store.
The Lester B. Pearson School Board has enjoyed an active partnership with Light A Dream for the last 25 years, and many familiar school board faces were on hand the evening of September 21st. The evening was a resounding success with over 80 people in attendance. In addition to having the winery staff explain the various red wine and rose vintages produced on-site, the event featured VIP tours, raffles and a silent auction. Live entertainment was provided by the band Elipsis made up of students from Westwood Senior High School and the duo Meiling Fong and Nick Gallant.
Events like these are not possible without the support of individuals and merchants in the West Island community. In the words of LAD President Roseann Martorana, “Thank you to our generous sponsors and benefactors. Once again, we have come together in support a wonderful program that helps us all appreciate the abilities of these dynamic students”.
All of the proceeds raised during this event will go towards maintaining the storefront operations of the Light a Dream boutique. This is critical because, according to Roseann Martorana, “the money we raise at our events, like the wine tasting we held in September, means the candle boutique can keep its doors open, students can continue to learn important life skills and gain work experience, and alumni have a place to connect with friends and the community”.
The Light a Dream boutique is located at 63B Donegani in Pointe-Claire and is open Monday through Saturday. The students and alumni who work at Light a Dream would love to have you visit!