AGAPE FOUNDATION OF LONDON

History

The Agape Foundation of London is one of two institutions that are the legacy of an adventure in spirituality and worship that began in 1967 and ended in 1988. The other institution is Dale Brain Injury Services.

In 1967 a small group of former members of Adelaide Baptist Church met in their homes. to discuss alternate forms of worship. It soon became apparent they needed a permanent meeting place. The following year Velma Stinson (nee Dale) offered the group the use of her former family home located on a two hundred acre tract of land at Southdale and Wonderland Road that had been purchased by the Dale family in 1893.

After moving into the house the group began to grow and to worship as a distinct community and by 1970 became a fully constituted church, The Church at Westmount,. The church evolved its own functional characteristics. These included its unique constitution, an informal liturgy. a locally-developed hymn/song book, and specialized community activities,  Members were required to renew their membership each year by witnessing their faith and signing the membership book. The Church at Westmount emphasized individual spiritual growth. Their search for a way to know Christ was centered on service to the community,

In 1972 Velma made an offer to the church to purchase ten acres of land at the corner of the property, The remainder of the acreage was sold to Sifton properties. The church became landowners. For a time the church membership flourished but by 1979 only six members of the congregation remained, The following year discussions concerning their stewardship of the property took place. The discussion centered on the need to continue the caring spirit of the church in the community.

In 1981, inspired by the designation of “Year of the Disabled” research in the community determined the need for a facility for the care and rehabilitation of people with acquired brain injury. Arrangements were made to sell one acre of the property to provide funding for the project. In 1982 the church was instrumental in incorporating the board of directors of the Dale Home. In 1984, after major renovations to the church house six clients and seven staff moved into The Dale Home for brain damaged adults. This facility became a leader in its field. By 1987 the need of a larger facility became apparent. The Dale Home Board in consultation with the Church at Westmount made the decision to relocate. The remainder of the property was sold. Funds were made available to the Dale Home to build a new facility, which was named the Dale Brain Injury Services. (www.daleservices.on.ca )
Today the staff consists of one hundred and thirty-six serving one hundred and seventy participants.

In 1986 the Church at Westmount started the process to establish a charitable foundation to which church assets could be transferred. The name chosen for the foundation was The Agape Foundation of London. (Agape the Greek biblical term for “unconditional love) In 1988 the Church at Westmount officially dissolved.

The Agape Foundation of London is centered on the original vision of service to the community held by the group that established the Church at Westmount. Four of the past members of the church served on the founding board of the foundation  The founding directors of The Agape Foundation of London were Gordon. and Bernice Hill and Ruth and Reg Hill. The two Hill families are not related.

The Agape Foundation of London defined its purpose as one of assisting in the development of the London area community through grants and special awards to charitable groups concerned with education, the arts, recreation, social services and the environment.

  The Foundation has been able to apply virtually its entire income in response to those grant applications deemed to meet the established granting criteria. To date the total of the grants over the years exceeds the amount of the original capital.

 

Oct. 12, 2017
Granting Update: The next grant application review will be held on Wednesday, February 7, 2018. Applications received prior to midnight Wednesday, January 17, 2018 will be considered at that time.