Mtre Fabrice Vil


Fabrice Vil : Change begins at home
Translated from the french text by Pierre-Luc Beauchesne, lawyer

Mtre Fabrice Vil is 29 years old. He was admitted to the Bar of Québec in 2007 and began his practice as a commercial litigator at Langlois Kronström Desjardins. Like many of his colleagues, Fabrice has always been active in his community.  In October 2010, he and a group of others founded the non-profit organization called Pour 3 Points, which seeks to encourage youngsters in disadvantaged neighborhoods to stay in school and complete their education through involvement in a sport, specifically basketball. Fabrice was also a member of the Board of Directors of Kanpe, an organization that coaches and supports the most vulnerable Haitians in their quest for a better future.  Motived by a deep desire to bring about change, in the summer of 2013 Fabrice decided to take the plunge: he left a stable, well-paying job to devote himself fulltime to Pour 3 Points.

Fabrice has always loved sports, and basketball most of all.  He played the game for much of his childhood, becoming a trainer at the age of 16.  Assuming that responsibility brought a kind of revelation.  He served as coach for nearly 10 years.  As a result, to Fabrice, basketball is more than a sport.  He is convinced that coaches are able to help people “succeed in life and become positive agents for change within their community.”  That just about sums up the mission of Pour 3 Points.

The program started at the Joseph-François-Perrault Secondary School in the low-income borough of Saint-Michel in Montréal, offering two sessions of homework assistance and two basketball practices per week.  The program has four basketball teams, which means more than 50 youngsters supervised by sports coaches and aided by tutors who help them with their homework.  The group is looking to the future and wants to maximize its impact on the community.  As a result, Pour 3 Points is now focused on training its sports coaches to make them life coaches: “We are in the process of creating a “training the trainers” program that will enable them to teach life skills to young people through high quality supervision,” explains Fabrice. So far, the organization’s main source of funding has been donations.  On June 5, to raise funds, P3P also presented a celebrity basketball game.

To change the world, you have to have the courage to change yourself.  Fabrice’s life took a new turn in 2013 when he decided to leave the practice of law to devote himself exclusively to Pour 3 Points. He is currently wearing a number of hats, since the organization is growing quickly.  He is chairman of the Board of Directors, Executive Director and Program Director.  Fabrice spent nearly six years in private practice at Langlois Kronström Desjardins.  He saw the practice of law as a kind of a game.  He enjoyed lining up arguments and was said to have a good future as litigator ahead of him.  Sometimes he misses the challenge but finds he gets a similar feeling when he has to speak in public or is promoting his organization. Law has brought him a lot and is still bringing him something.  First of all, a capacity for analysis, because “the law makes you go to the heart of the problem.”  He also became aware of the importance of being prepared for everything you do.  The law also enabled him to develop a capacity for adapting and learning:  “You have to be humble and recognize that you don’t really know a lot and that you are constantly seeking to learn.”

Although he has become what can be called a social entrepreneur, Fabrice doesn’t want to leave the profession.  For him, being a lawyer “is not just a job; it’s a way of life that lets you be connected to your community.”  Fabrice practices law differently: “I am still part of a community of people who want to bring about change.  No one decides to become a lawyer without wanting to make a positive contribution to society.”

To be a change agent, you must not fear change.  Mtre Fabrice Vil has dared to become what many lawyers aspire to be.  And best of all, he gets up every morning to do something that he adores.

To learn more about Pour 3 Points, visit the following website : http://www.pour3points.ca