Social Justice Groups & Opportunities
Groups meet at UUS except where noted.
Accessibility Committee helps UUS to be a caring, inclusive community by proactively welcoming children, families, and individuals with special needs to UUS programs, and facilitating connections and support networks.
Various days and times
Rochelle Honey-Arcement, email@example.com
Circle of Friends Immigration Action Group
Group members assist five immigrant families and host social events to develop relationships between UUS and these families. Two families are Guatemalan and three are Sudanese. UUS provides financial, emotional, and logistical support–depending on family needs. Examples of support include tutoring English, interpreting, occasionally assisting with rent, and helping with transportation. Each December we organize a gift-giving program for the families.
Circle of Friends does not have regular meetings. Each immigrant family has a “cluster” of UUS members or friends who provide support.
Through individual and congregational support of the Center for Worker Justice (CWJ), we also educate and advocate for immigrant rights and for immigration law and policy reform on the local, state, and national levels.
No regular meetings; event times vary
Contact: Deb Schoelerman and Sally Hartman, firstname.lastname@example.org
Consultation of Religious Communities
UUS is a member of the Consultation of Religious Communities (CRC), an interfaith council composed of more than thirty religious communities and related agencies in Johnson County. Representatives from each organization meet to conduct business and engage one another in dialogue and mutual support. The CRC sponsors community events and service activities and works to foster appreciation and understanding on matters of religious and cultural diversity.
3rd Wednesday, 10 am-noon, meetings rotate among member religious communities
Contact: Gay Mikelson, email@example.com
Free Lunch Program
Greater Iowa City Free Lunch provides free hot meals six days a week for those in need in our community. UUS supports the Free Lunch Program by sending a group of volunteers on the second Friday of each month to prepare, serve, and clean up after a lunch for approximately 150 people.
2nd Friday, 11 am-2 pm, 1105 S. Gilbert Ct., Iowa City
Contact: Carmen Griggs, firstname.lastname@example.org
Green Sanctuary Team
Green Sanctuary Team collaborates on ways to live our seventh principle (respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part) in the life of our congregation, in our personal lives, and in our world. UUS is also a member of Iowa Interfaith Power and Light (IPL). Iowa IPL inspires and equips people of faith to become leaders finding solutions to climate change through education, assistance with carbon footprint reduction, and advocacy for sustainable energy policies.
1st Tuesday, 5:30-7:00 pm
Contact: Deb Schoelerman, email@example.com
Guatemala Service Trips
Every two years we offer a service-learning trip to Guatemala for youth and adults. Past trip projects have included planting trees with the Chico Mendez Reforestation Project, distributing shoes, and volunteering in a school. Participants usually stay in the homes of local families.
Summer 2020 is when we plan to have the next trip
Contact: Deb Schoelerman and Sally Hartman, firstname.lastname@example.org
Habitat for Humanity
Iowa Valley Habitat for Humanity helps provide affordable housing solutions in our area. We cooperate with other religious organizations in the area on the Interfaith Build house. Our group coordinates volunteer opportunities for UUS members and friends to help build homes together, volunteer at Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore and warehouse, and explore fundraising opportunities to support our work with Iowa Valley Habitat for Humanity. (Also check out iowavalleyhabitat.org)
Sign up to be on our volunteer list to receive notification of specific opportunities to help.
Contact: Jan Locher and Dave Gallaher, email@example.com
Iowa Unitarian Universalist Witness & Action Network
Iowa Unitarian Universalist Witness and Action Network (IUUWAN) works to engage UUs across Iowa in a learning, connection and action process to create positive change, and to make our voices an effective tool for change. It is based in Ames, Iowa, but organizes events across Iowa. Visit iuuwan.com for more info.
Contact: Sally Hartman, firstname.lastname@example.org
Johnson County Interfaith Coalition
UUS is a member of Johnson County Interfaith Coalition (JCIC), along with a number of other churches and religious communities in the area. JCIC is working to build a multi-cultural faith-based community organization to advocate for social justice, especially for persons of color. We are working to create a team of UUS people to have one-on-one conversations within our congregation, and with other congregations, people interested in working on voter engagement locally, and people wanting to engage on task forces for particular social justice issues in our local area.
Contact: Joel Gilbertson-White and Rev. Diane Dowgiert, email@example.com
LGBTQ Advocacy & Education
Currently our main activity is to march in the annual Iowa City Pride Parade in June, but we are also looking for volunteers to help us to educate about LGBTQ issues and develop programs to renew our Welcoming Congregation status.
Currently no regular meetings
Contact: Peggy Garrigues, firstname.lastname@example.org
Partner Church Support
UUS has a partner Unitarian Church in Janosfalva, Romania. We celebrate that relationship at least once a year in a Sunday service and with a special offering. We have previously had an active program that included educational programs and events, and opportunities to travel to Romania. At the moment we do not have leaders of this program, but we hope to renew the relationship and develop related programs in the future.
Currently no meetings
Contact: No current leader, but Mary Katherine Wallace can provide info on previous activities, email@example.com
Racial Justice Study/ACTION Circle
The Racial Justice Study/ACTION Circle is UUS’s next step to visibly and responsibly answer the call from communities of color to stand and act in solidarity for racial justice. Please join us as we collaboratively build our vision to effectively engage in racial justice efforts in our community.
1st and 3rd Sunday, 11:15 am
Contact: Peg Bouska and Dave Martin, firstname.lastname@example.org
Social Justice Action Fund
The Social Justice Action Fund (SJAF) funds ad hoc requests for social justice projects and events. Any member of the congregation may request funding for projects that forward the UUS vision and mission, provide benefit to the local community, and encourage intergenerational collaboration and networking.
Various dates and times
Contact: Sara Feldmann and Pete Brokaw, email@example.com
Social Justice Team
The Social Justice Coordinating Team coordinates our congregation’s overall community service, monthly community partners, and a variety of social action activities in our area. Our meetings are informal and fun, and we welcome new faces and ideas. Letter writing and other advocacy opportunities are offered many Sundays after the service in the Fellowship Hall. Join us! All are welcome!
2nd Tuesday, 7-8:30 pm
Contact: Sally Hartman and Mary McCann, firstname.lastname@example.org