UUnited Youth Ministry

UUnited Youth Ministry

Crowdfunding Completed: August 23, 2014

Amount Funded: $15820

Project Owner: First Parish Church in Taunton (and six other UU Churches)

Short Description of Project

UUnited is a Regional Youth Group of seven local area congregations. Our goal is to inspire youth to shape their own and each other's values, provide service to others and create worship, all the while maintaining their UU identity and experiencing the awesome potential of love dwelling at the center of our faith. The money raised will be used to fund a Youth Group Coordinator who facilitates communication, administers the program and engages actively with youth to identify and develop effective and resonant leadership.

How was this project connected to UU?

This project is a collaboration of seven UU congregations. We believe that for Unitarian Universalism to flourish, we have to be more than churches – we have to be a faith for the future, standing on the side of love. We believe that UUnited will help build leadership for the future of our faith.
We claim Unitarian Universalism by inviting our youth to engage not only in their individual churches, but also in our larger faith as they gather in a multi-congregational setting. Our vision is to inspire youth to shape their own and each other's values, provide service to others and create worship, all the while maintaining their UU identity and experiencing the awesome potential of love dwelling at the center of our faith.

Full Description of Project

“It's not our job to toughen our children up to face a cruel and heartless world. It's our job to raise children who will make the world a little less cruel and heartless.”
― L.R. Knost, Two Thousand Kisses a Day: Gentle Parenting Through the Ages and Stages

Last year four churches formed a collaborative youth group in a pilot program that became hugely successful and so engaging that other three churches have asked to join us.

This gathering of intentions and actions birthed UUnited.

UUnited is a Regional Youth Group of seven local area congregations. The money raised will be used to fund a Youth Group Coordinator who will plan activities, communicate with families and churches, administer the program and work with the youth to identify and develop leadership. The more than 50 youth expected from the seven congregations will create worship, engage in service projects, teach and learn from each other, play, and break bread together. They will meet twice a month at First Parish Church in Taunton MA. UUnited is grounded in our individual UU congregations and designed to deepen relationships beyond those congregations. Our goal is to inspire youth to experience the awesome potential of love which lies at the center of our faith.

Youth-WordleThe group will welcome youth in 7-12 grades (Middle and High School). If the numbers permit, we plan to have curriculum once a month for the middle school youth. This would include OWL and Coming of Age and possibly other programs as well. High School youth may also do OWL, though programming will likely be youth directed, allowing them autonomy in the decision making. Our Youth Group Coordinator would be responsible for recruiting adult volunteers to help facilitate groups and teach programming, communicating with parents about upcoming programs and activities (or recruiting a volunteer to help with that), creating a process to address problems or conflicts that may arise within the group, communicating with parents, and DRE's and a variety of other tasks related to managing a large multi-congregational project. The position will be twenty hours a week and will have an office in one of our churches. By offering $15,000 for eleven months, fair compensation, we will be able to hire a well qualified person to coordinate UUnited.

Youth_Leading_Change

Meeting twice a month allows our youth the opportunity to meet in their smaller groups within their own congregations at least once a month. We know that youth group is not "church" and we want our youth to experience what it means to be fully in community in our churches. We seek to inspire our youth to participate in congregational life, to attend worship with their families, to be active on committees and task forces, to help with church fundraisers and to engage with adults and younger children. UUnited provides our youth the opportunity to learn the essential steps to becoming an informed and engaged citizen of the world. Discussion, activities, and time to play are all part of the vision of UUnited.

Everyone who donates $100 or more will receive a UUnited Limited edition T-Shirt with the UUnited logo on the front.

Edited Leaves Pic

The Seven Participating Churches are:
Murray UU Church Attleboro MA
First Parish UU Church, Bridgewater MA
Foxboro Universalist Church, Foxboro MA
First Unitarian Universalist Society, Middleboro MA
First Unitarian Church, New Bedford MA
Unity Church North, Easton MA
First Parish Church, Taunton MA