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Fairlawn Neighbourhood Centre, located at 28 Fairlawn Avenue in Toronto was formed in 1997 by Fairlawn United Church to provide opportunities for all people within the neighbourhood to “support and celebrate one another, feel valued and nourished, strive towards personal wellness and experience the joy of giving.” The outreach ministry was incorporated in January 1998 during which time oversight moved from Fairlawn United Church to a designated board of directors. The Fairlawn Neighbourhood Centre operated more than 300 programs targeted to preschoolers, youth, adults and seniors. Weekly programming included fitness, creative play, music enrichment, drama, bridge, wellness education and community workshops. Due to a decline in programming interest, the Board of Directors voted to discontinue all programming as of June 30, 2016. Members of the Fairlawn Neighbourhood Centre voted at the annual meeting in September 2016 to dissolve the corporation.
Grant Bracewell was born in Penticton, B.C. After studying at the University of British Columbia and Union College, he was ordained by The United Church of Canada, BC Conference in 1955. He served in pastoral ministry first as a student at Honeymoon Bay, B.C., and post-ordination at Bella Coola, Trinity (Merritt), and Royal Heights (Delta). Having received a testamur in 1955, he completed the thesis requirement for his Bachelor of Divinity degree while in pastoral ministry. In 1967, he earned his Master of Library Science degree and the following year became the first theological librarian at Emmanuel College (University of Toronto) and coordinator of all the libraries of the Toronto Schools of Theology. He retired with his wife, Eleanor, in 1993 to South Surrey, B.C., where both were involved at Crescent United Church.
Bracewell served the United Church in various capacities throughout his life, both in Ontario and B.C. Among his many contributions were: Boys' Work Secretary for the BC Conference Christian Education Committee; chair of the Bella Coola General Hospital Board (1955-1958); chair of Toronto Scarborough Presbytery (1986-1987); chair of the General Council Manual Committee (1980-1986); and chair of the BC Conference Archives and History Committee (1996-2005). He was a member of numerous university and church committees, but most relevant to the archival materials was his work on the Research Committee for the Working Unit on Sexuality, Marriage, and Family (Division of Mission in Canada, 1982). In retirement, Bracewell served on the Board of the Camp Kwomais Society (1994-2004) and volunteered at the BC Conference Archives for 25 years (1993-2018).