Rexdale Action for Neighbourhood Change

Granville Foger tends to the community garden in Rexdale.

Sowing the seeds of community change

Granville Foger always enjoys the arrival of spring in Rexdale. As a member of the local Action for Neighbourhood Change (ANC) residents’ association, Foger worked with a group of neighbours to plant a community garden.

“This garden is bringing people together,” says Granville, who has lived in the north Toronto community for 20 years.

Strengthening bonds between neighbours through resident-led projects like community gardens is an important part of United Way’s ANC initiative—and a first step toward revitalizing Toronto’s inner suburbs. Granville says that since ANC opened its doors, he’s seen a real difference.

“I’ve seen ANC build bridges between people and help them get to know their neighbours,” Granville says. “Now, people are friendlier and they look out for each other. Little by little, the barriers are coming down.”

It takes more than strong connections alone to build a better neighbourhood. ANC ensures residents know what services are available in their area and connects them with local programs. ANC also consults with residents and works with community agencies to ensure programs and services meet the needs of people who live there.

“Now each resident has a place they can turn to if they have a problem. Through ANC, we refer people to the one that best meets their needs.”

Even more services and supports will soon be available when United Way opens a new Community Hub with Albion Neighbourhood Services and Rexdale Community Health Centre. Granville and other passionate residents like him are already asking their neighbours for input.

“We want to involve all residents. Everyone in this community has a role to play—and a dream of our neighbourhood to make a reality.”

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