Scholarship Fund for Young Adult Peer Chaplains

Scholarship Fund for Young Adult Peer Chaplains

Crowdfunding Completed: June 2, 2017

Amount Funded: $360

Project Owner: Adele Johnson

Short Description of Project

We’re training young adults, primarily from the MidAmerica Region, as peer chaplains to provide care for communities without professional ministers.

How was this project connected to UU?

This project is born and raised by four Unitarian Universalist young adults who went to high school youth conferences together in Heartland District. We experienced the value of the Chaplain Training for Youth then and now see a need for the same in our young adult communities. We are being hosted by a UU congregation and are in partnership with the MidAmerica’s UU Young Adult Steering Committee (YASC) and the MidAmerica Region office.

Full Description of Project

We’re running a peer chaplain training specifically designed for young adults. The value of peer chaplains in our communities is clear.

About the Training

June 2-4, 2017

Unitarian Universalist Church of Greater Lansing

This training conference is organized independently by a team of young adults with support from MidAmerica’s Young Adult Steering Committee (YASC) and MidAmerica Region UUA.

Young adulthood is a time of regular upheaval, transition, and change. Peer chaplains are trained, compassionate listeners who know how to keep people company through such difficult times.

Unfortunately, the cost of being trained prevents many young adults from getting the training they want and their communities need.  Young adults are often struggling just to buy groceries, pay rent, and get by.

Of the 13 people registered already, 9 have requested financial assistance. We can give each of them a partial scholarship thanks to a generous gift of $300 from MidAmerica’s Young Adult Steering Committee (YASC) and in-kind support from the MidAmerica Region UUA.

Your gift will fund a full scholarship for those 9 young adults requesting help. Every additional $50 will fully fund another young adult. When your generosity funds more people than can attend the training or are seeking assistance, the team will use the funds to help compensate staff for travel and any remaining funds will be gifted to YASC to help with future YA programing.

After the event, trainers will be doing individual follow-up with newly trained chaplains to support them in their next steps toward becoming confident caregivers in their communities. They will have opportunities to continue the conversation together and keep learning and growing.


Leslie Massicotte

Experienced peer chaplain and life-long UU, Leslie grew up in the MidAmerica region and served in youth leadership positions on both local and regional levels. Trained in the Chrysalis program, she also practices chaplaincy skills in her current role as social worker for refugees in the Indianapolis area.  She is excited to share this invaluable training with the young adult community!

Ruth Hinkle

As a skilled national and regional leader, Ruth has led UU communities since high school. She's developed three curricula on worship and updated the Chrysalis chaplaincy curricula for young adults in 2016. In her daily life, she works for an accredited university where people are trained in emotional intelligence and leadership. She's thrilled to be bringing additional skills to help young adults create caring, safe communities.


Tikka Johnson, Logistics & Co-Cook

Raised as a UU since second grade, Tikka first became involved with planning youth conferences in high school.  She's held numerous roles as facilitator, registrar, and cook at both middle and high school cons. As Logistics Coordinator and Registrar for this event, she is greatly looking forward to helping facilitate and participate in this training.

Ben Ensroth, Co-Cook

An active UU since 8th grade, Ben was involved in the high school youth group at his church and in youth cons. He continued his involvement after high school and has been participating in district YA events for the past 8 years, as well as recently beginning to serve as a Worship Associate at his home church. He is excited about helping to facilitate and participate in this training.