Construction of the Autism Center at Giant’s Steps

Historic inauguration for the autism community

MONTREAL, December 13, 2021 / CNW Telbec / РA symbolic first shovelful of soil took place this morning to announce the imminent construction of the new Autism Center in Pas de G̩ant, a first in the country, which will make Quebec a leader in autism education, research and services. Excavation work will officially begin this month and the doors of the Center will open in the summer of 2023.

Giant Steps Logo (CNW Group / Giant Steps)

A unique state-of-the-art building with an area of ​​66,500 square feet will be erected in the heart of the Technopôle Angus neighborhood in Rosemont. In addition, in collaboration with the architectural firm Provencher Roy, the Center was designed to meet the specific sensory and perceptual needs of people with autism, particularly in terms of the organization of spaces, the choice of materials and the type of lighting.

With great pride, À Pas de Géant Montreal today marked another important step towards the realization of this ambitious project. The Autism Center will offer lifelong services grouped under four main pillars: À Pas de Géant school, an Adult Education and Employment Center, a Community and Resource Center and a Research and Development Center. ‘innovation.

Some steps to take to reach the goal

Thanks to a major investment of $ 15 million by the Government of Quebec last August and the invaluable contribution of private sector and community donors, 84% of the total fundraising objective was reached, with more than $ 7 million still to be raised. As a member of Take a giant leap for autism Fundraising campaign, which is still ongoing, the organization seeks to raise the balance in the private sector as well as the federal government.

Inclusive recovery: people with autism can do more

Adults with autism have the potential and strong desire to become active members of the workforce and contribute to economic recovery and the development of a more inclusive society.

While a severe labor shortage is slowing the province’s economic recovery, a surprising majority of adults with autism, about 86%, are either unemployed or underemployed. Employers who have hired people with autism report better than average overall performance, less absenteeism, greater precision in their tasks, and many other positive qualities. There are also many positive impacts on the corporate culture, on the pride of other employees, on the company’s image and even on customer loyalty.

Having already helped many adults with autism find employment with Quebec companies, À Pas de Géant is determined to continue in this direction. Giant’s Footsteps believes that by helping people with autism build on their strengths and characteristics, sharing their knowledge and partnering with businesses and organizations, they will create a more inclusive society and new opportunities that will benefit everyone.


“This is an important step not only for the À Pas de Géant Center but also and above all for young people living with an autism spectrum disorder and for their families. These young people will soon have access to a school environment designed and built with their specificities. needs in mind. I am very happy for the young people who will attend this school. The support they will receive there will allow them to develop their full potential..

РMr. Jean-Fran̤ois Roberge, Minister of Education

“A few weeks after the government’s announcement of the government’s investment in the construction of the À pas de Géant Center, we are already at the groundbreaking stage, and I am quite simply delighted. As Minister responsible for the Metropolis, I am very proud that this project is taking root here in Montreal, at the heart of one of our most inclusive living environments. This center, which will reach many young people and adults with autism, will benefit their loved ones, their loved ones, their families and the whole community.

– Mrs. Chantal Rouleau, Minister for Transport and Minister responsible for the Metropolis and the Montreal region

“For Sophie and I, and most parents of children with autism, one of our biggest concerns is what will happen when we are gone. A center like Giant Steps, which will help empower everyone and find their own. place in the community, whether in day programs or in employment, this is something we want for our Mathis. “

Charles Lafortune, TV host and parent of an autistic child

“Giant’s Footsteps provides a learning environment where the diversity and unique strengths of each individual are celebrated. Today’s event reminds us that we will soon be able to do more and better to empower people with autism to reach their full potential.

Thomas henderson, Director General, Giant’s Footsteps School

“We cannot thank enough the generous donors who made this day possible. We are delighted to see the Autism Center take shape. This ceremony is a great demonstration of the social project that we are building thanks to their support.

РAndr̩e Dallaire and Andr̩ Bourbonnais, co-chairs of the fundraising campaign, Take a giant leap for autism

“There is a clear business case for hiring individuals with autism. It’s not about charity or social responsibility, but rather about creating a more diverse workforce with employees who think outside the box, are loyal, productive and detail-oriented. “

Andr̩ Pereira, Project Manager РEmployment Initiatives, Giant Steps School

“It is a real pleasure for us to welcome and contribute directly to the development of this unique project which is close to our hearts. The start of construction is only one of the big steps to come that will strengthen our pride in doing this. “

Christian Yaccarini, President and CEO, Development Corporation Angus

More about Giant Steps Montreal

À Pas de Géant has been at the forefront of autism education for over 40 years. Our intensive educational and therapeutic programs, offered in French and English, to 90 students aged 4 to 21, are unique in Quebec and has been reproduced around the world. We also offer an adult education program and partner with the federally funded Ready, Willing and Able program, which seeks to match employers with employees with autism. In addition, our resource and training center plays a vital role in ASD training in all sectors and supports many types of organizations. Our team of more than 90 professionals is one of the largest in the province.

Find out more about Technopôle Angus

The Technopole Angus, an urban revitalization project located in the Rosemont District of Montreal, is guided by the principles of sustainable development and social economy. With its 70 companies and 3,000 employees, residents, shops and local services, the Technopôle Angus is a real living environment including, among other things, many green spaces and public places. Its mixed use and careful planning promote an urban lifestyle within a safe and supportive community.

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