Gilles en vrac… depuis 2002

From Charity to Solidarity, the detailed itinerary

May 5th, for 2 hours (11:00-13:00) of Jane’s Walk we will make several stops. Link to register to the walk (at the bottom of the linked page).

[You may want to visit the web sites of the different organizations]

Our first stop is The forecourt of the Très Saint-Rédempteur Church, 3530 Adam Street between Joliette and Aylwin Streets. As CBC reported, in January 2016: « Very rare in a Catholic church, the glass windows of master glassmaker Guido Nincheri represent scenes from the Old Testament ». From the forecourt one can see, on the north side of the street, at the Aylwin corner, the Fondation du Dr Julien building.

On the other side, at the corner of Joliette Street, is the Cuisine Collective Hochelaga-Maisonneuve (a collective kitchen) located in the former Caisse populaire. A training and placement workplace, the collective kitchen offers a catering service and a tourist residence in addition to allowing groups of citizens to cook together. It is in this neighborhood that the first collective kitchen in Québec was created in 1982. Now, the Réseau québécois des cuisines collectives, the association gathering all collective kitchens, has more than 1300 members. Our group is invited for an indoor visit of the installations, including the rooftop gardens (to be confirmed).

In front of the Cuisine collective, there is the Baril elementary school, reopened this year after indoor mold problems resulted in complete shutdown. Built in 1910, and opened in 1911, this is the oldest school of the neighborhood. Only the central part of the old facade remains today, where we can see its motto « Deliberate and … » – and what? It’s up to you to find ! To learn more, a magnificent document was produced (PDF in French), as part of a series of historical studies on the neighborhood’s primary schools.

Our next stop will be another church forecourt, at the old St-Mathias Church, which is now occupied by the Chic Resto Pop since August 2004. Created more than 30 years ago, in 1984, the Chic Resto Pop is also a training and placement workplace, where there is a community cafeteria from Monday to Friday for lunch and supper (meals between 2-4$), a restaurant in the Jubé, a mobile distribution of frozen meals, among others services. To learn a more about the people of Hochelaga, you can see documentary by Tahani Rached shot in 1989, which presents young people working at Chic Resto Pop and talking about their lives, accompanied the songs of Steve Faulkner (available in French on NFB website).

Many women were leaders in the Resto Pop project: first director Annie Vidal, Sister Annette Benoît, CLSC nutritionist Louise Lépine and Jacinthe Ouellette, who was the director for decades. She was replaced by the two current co-directors, Suzanne Boudrias and Miriam Morin. On the day of our walk, many families will be participating in Troc n’Roll (Swap n’Roll), an exchange of kid’s and maternity clothes and toys organized by and for families in collaboration with 200 portes HM (200 doors HM) a project affiliated with the local roundtable.

The building opposite the Resto Pop used to be a Société de Saint-Vincent de Paul’s counter, providing affordable access to basic necessities for families in the neighborhood. It then became the CLSC’s department of home services for 20 years. For the past 15 years, this building has been occupied by Carrefour familial Hochelaga, the « CAFAHO » as it is still called. This organization, created in 1976, provides information, referral and consultation services, luncheon discussions, family camps, family activities, a drop-in centre (for kids from 0-5 years), parental support groups, and continuing education classes, among other services. It is also known for its Maison Oxygen a temporary shelter for men with family or marital problems, with or without children. This model inspired the creation of many other shelters in the province.

Our journey then takes us to the forecourt and inside the Très-Saint-Nom-de-Jésus church, thanks to Jenny who will welcome us on site. In this large church (5,000m2), we will be able to admire a large organ of 91-stop four-manual and pedal instrument, Opus 600 by the Casavant brothers, one of the largest in Canada at the time of its construction. Concerts and choirs are frequent at the church and highlight the instrument while contributing to the financial support of this cultural and religious legacy. In addition, you can also visit the Très-Saint-Nom-de-Jésus Museum, thanks to a collaboration between the Hochelaga-Maisonneuve History Workshop (Atelier d’histoire Hochelaga-Maisonneuve) and the Church.

Next to the church, we will see the former presbytery transformed into a residence for the elderly, Maison des aînés Hochelaga-Maisonneuve, a non-profit organization comprising 32 housing units and community spaces. Gilles can talk a lot more about this project that kept him busy for 3-4 years (from 2002 to 2006), from project design with the neighborhood roundtable to the first years of operation.

Our next stop on Adam Street is the next church, Saint-Barnabé, now home of CAP Saint-Barnabé, a « food and sharing hub » created in 1991 and run until 2014 by Jeannelle Bouffard. A short video of 3 minutes on the homepage of the organization’s website summarizes the story well … A day center, food, clothing, a shelter for homeless, social housing in three locations … The Christmas baskets and Back to School Backpacks initiatives reach more than 800 families each year.

Our last stop on Adam Street is the Saint-Clément-de-Viauville Church, which has not yet found a new vocation, even though it has been the subject of discussions for a number of years, including with a solidarity cooperative and several partners in the community, including the Maison des aînés Hochelaga-Maisonneuve. « The church, presbytery and convent Sainte-Émilie (1902), former girls’ boarding school, is one of the oldest complexes in the area. Notice the seven windows of Guido Nincheri, made between 1961 and 1963, that show the themes of the Virgin, Saint-Clément pastor of souls and the life of Christ  » (our translation).

We will then head up North on Viau Street, where we will pass the project Parole d’excluEs. Among the achievements of this organization are the redesign of the railway into a pedestrian and cycling route (in its portion between St-Clément and Viau streets) which we will take towards the local market, Marché Maisonneuve.

To see our itinerary in 58 photos (taken last year):

By Gilles Beauchamp, former CLSC community organizer (1976 à 2012)

Translated by Annabelle Berthiaume, Social Work student, McGill University



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