Embracing Action at Fairlawn means:
• getting to know our neighbours and recognizing the richness that comes with diversity,
• building relationships with those who are marginalized and whose voices have been silenced, and
• helping to create a society where all can live with dignity.
We, at Fairlawn, have a long history of embracing action – and we’d love to have you join us, whether it’s regularly or occasionally. You can also make some new friends while you help to make a difference.
Boarding Home Ministry
Usually we have a small team of volunteers that visit a local boarding home every second Thursday afternoon so they can share food, music, laughter, and conversation. We’re staying in touch with those residents by phone now.
Embrace Action Fund
Our Embrace Action Fund supports many organizations whose work is consistent with our social outreach vision of poverty reduction. We provide financial aid and also, when organizations are open, volunteers for those with whom we can deepen our relationship over time. The organizations that we support are Fred Victor/CRC, L’Arche Toronto, Red Door Family Shelter, and Street Health. Learn more.
Camp Scugog is still offering online programming and support for children and families in need. Fairlawn fundraises so these programs can continue, and we are still writing letters to former campers. We usually also help with the annual camp clean-up, but that was postponed this year. Read our letter from camp for the update for the Summer of 2021.
Food Bank Support
We collect money and provide fruit and vegetables, as well as volunteers, when the Lansing United Church Food Bank is open. It is a member of the North York Harvest Food Bank and serves more than 200 families a month in north Toronto.
Roehampton Basket Drive
When Roehampton residents move into permanent housing, they often arrive with only the clothes they are wearing, without basic items needed to make their house feel like a home. Recognizing this challenge, and in partnership with other churches in the NTC, Fairlawn is running a drive to collect home items. For a list of the items we are looking for and details, please check here .
Love Your Neighbour…. With Your Surplus Stuff
If your closet is overflowing, check here to help you figure out which neighbour needs the love your closet can provide. We have lists of five different kinds of stuff that our Embrace Action partners (and a few others) need. We also provide guidance for how to deliver directly to our partner. You can both clear your clutter and make someone’s day!
A new Fairlawn refugee support team has been formed and we’re working with Rainbow Railroad to eventually sponsor a single male refugee. We have supported four familiesover the past five years and helped them successfully integrate into Canadian society. While Fairlawn provides financial support for one year, volunteers help our newcomers connect to important resources for housing, medical and dental needs, schools, English instruction, and employment. Learn more.
Social Justice: Fairlawn Letter Writers
We educate ourselves and our congregation about the root causes of poverty. We also work with other faith and secular groups to advocate to end poverty. Our focus is on affordable housing, a basic income to address income inequality, and providing adequate social assistance, and we are currently writing letters to address those. If you’d like to make a difference, you can also write to our local politicians and newspapers. Check here for the politicians’ contact information as well as sample letters from which you can glean information for your letter.
Truth and Reconciliation
We’re working with other United Churches to support the five-year Gibimishkaadimin Reconciliation Journey project, where Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal youth share a summer paddling adventure while learning about each other’s lives and culture. Some of our youth have also participated. We’ve supported it for three years and, even though it’s cancelled for this year, we look forward to when it returns next year. Learn more.
When our building is open, we welcome those who are struggling to make ends meet into our Walk-in Support program on the first Tuesday morning of the month. We offer a warm, friendly environment where visitors have breakfast and a chance to talk one-on- on with a volunteer. We also distribute grocery gift cards. Learn more. During the pandemic, we are mailing letter of support and gift cards to our clients.