The Northwest London Resource Centre, the Limberlost Chaplaincy and other community partners have been working together to develop programming initiatives that have a positive impact for area youth.
To highlight the great work that they do, I invited Faduma Haji from the Limberlost Chaplaincy to write a column sharing a recent success with London Community News readers. The column appears below.
With the support of our main funder, Libro Financial Group, the Limberlost Chaplaincy has been working with youth and families in the neighbourhood to complete a beautification project. This summer, youth have had the opportunity to share their ideas to improve their neighbourhood and feel that their voices are being heard.
During the first phase of the program, families were invited to take home plants, flowers and veggies, compliments of Van Horiks and Heeman’s garden centres as part of the greening aspect of the project. Some planted these in their beautified spaces and others created beautiful gardens from nothing.
For the younger children, Janice Merrifield, from Van Horiks, came to do a workshop and help the children to create a community garden behind the chaplaincy, which the children have taken such good care of over the summer. These children were also given plants, compliments of Van Horiks to take home and plant in their gardens. The children had a great time and learned a lot about the how-to’s of gardening.
Over the summer, not only have some of the residents of Limberlost worked together to beautify their individual spaces and make plans for the neighbourhood on a larger scale, the youth have also worked together on phase two, to plan some great construction projects for the near future. With the support of Banting Secondary School and Mr. Pavez, three youth worked on building benches, tables and garbage structures.
Also, with the help of Pathways Skills Centre, a community shed will be built. The neighbourhood feels it’s important to have a safe place to hold community supplies such as gardening tools and sports equipment, as well as any other items for the community to use.
In addition to the construction, a community clean up and graffiti removal day will take place soon. During this time, youth will work in teams to freshen things up with paint and decorate the new additions to the neighbourhood. Residents are excited to make the common areas more sociable and have spaces more comfortable for people to gather.
Most of the things we accomplished and continue to work towards would not be possible without the support of our funders and partners. It gives us a chance to come together and share our ideas and put them into action which is rewarding for residents.
We would like to give our thanks and appreciation to Libro Financial Group, Van Horiks, Agape, Heeman’s, Lowes, Home Depot, Pathways Skills Centre, Banting Secondary School and Mr. Pavez as well as London-Middlesex Housing Corporation for listening to our ideas and giving us permission to make changes to the neighbourhood.
Ward 7 Councillor Matt Brown can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org, by phone at 519-661-2500, ext. 4597 (city hall) or 226-448-8548 (home office). You can also link to his Facebook and Twitter accounts from www.matthewbrown.ca.