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Outreach at Applewood
Rev. Joanne Hedge

Applewood United supports the following community organizations:

  • The Mississauga Food Bank
  • Interim Place
  • Elizabeth Fry Society of Peel/Halton
  • Our Place Peel
  • Alzheimer Society of Peel
  • The Compass

Foster Child Support: Year round support for our Guatemalan foster child through Plan Canada.

Regular ‘Minute for Mission’ stories are presented at Sunday services about the many United Church missions in Canada and the world through word or video.

Special times of the year:   Advent: ‘White Gift’ service/ ‘Mitten Tree’          Lent: Undie/Sock collection

Special Outreach Sundays: Focus on United Church missions alternating with community organizations.

Little Free Library
What is a Little Free Library you might ask? Basically it is a community book exchange program. Although “library” implies lending / borrowing, the idea behind the Little Free Library (LFL) is that of exchange ie “take a book, return a book”.

In 2015 Applewood United Church installed two Little Free Library as a form of Outreach to the surrounding community. One library is to support children and young adults books and the other is for adults. Careful consideration was given to find the best location for easy accessibility and usefulness. A bench was also installed for anyone who might like to look at the books, sit and enjoy the outdoors, or even just to rest.

The ebb and flow of books is limited only by the community’s willingness to participate. Not only do people take a book and return the same one, we frequently see that people take one book and return a different one. Sometimes books are just not returned. At AUC the steward, who is a church member thinks that’s okay because “I like to think that the book is making its own journey in the universe and is right where it needs to be”. Quite frequently we see that people will take one book but add many books.

Our Little Free Libraries (LFL) remains very popular and are well used by the local Applewood Acres community and also our church community. The libraries are monitored frequently, with books being added and removed books as required, keeping them tidy, and removing extraneous materials if appropriate.

There are many known benefits to having access in a community to a Little Free Library. It builds on a love of reading, encourages walking, encourages community spirit and pride, and for Applewood United Church, is a form of community outreach.

As you are aware, due to the ongoing public health crisis, almost all public venues are closed including the public libraries. At this time, our Little Free Libraries may be an even more important way of helping our neighbours stay connected, boost morale, and put a smile on our faces. Thus, with the approval of Peel Region Public Health, they remain open. However, as with everything else, one should practice common sense. If you are uncomfortable and especially if you feel ill, it is recommended that you stay away from the libraries and don’t share books. Do what you are comfortable with as we remain mindful and respectful of each other.

Happy reading.