Part of UUWaco’s mission statement is “to live meaningful, joyful lives of service toward the creation of a more just and loving world.” Social action is how we do that, and it expresses all five of our Core Values of compassion, inclusion, spiritual growth, inquiry, and celebration.
Contact information is linked for each currently active service project, for more information or to find out how you can help.
Share the Plate
Members and friends select charities we want to partner with. Each week for a month, our Sunday offerings are split 50/50 with the charity (minus pledges, which are the fuel for our daily, weekly, monthly and yearly ministries and needs as a fellowship).
Social Action Team
The Social Action Team is where the rubber meets the road for many Unitarian Universalists. Here are some of the ongoing social action projects and opportunities in which members and friends are invited to join.
SpectrUUm is UUWaco’s LGBTQ outreach, advocacy, and support group. Gatherings include everything from film festivals to game nights to featured speakers on a variety of topics. SpectrUUm meetings are open to all members and allies of the LGBTQ community, and held at UUWaco on the first Thursday of every month (they are currently off for the summer but will resume meeting September 3, 2015). For more information, check out our calendar or email spectrUUm@uuwaco.org.
Digging a Well in Ethiopia
In 2012 and 2013, UUWaco partnered with Water to Thrive, a nonprofit based in Austin, Texas, and raised
funds to dig a water well in Dengolt, a small village in Ethiopia. Having the well near at hand saved the women and children of the village from having to walk hours one-way to fetch water for daily life, allowing the girls to begin attending school again. UUWaco just completed another fundraiser and now has enough money to fund a second water well in partnership with Water to Thrive.
UUWaco was granted Welcoming Congregation designation from the Unitarian Universalist Association in November 2014. In choosing to follow this path, we have found new ways to be welcoming to a diverse population within our walls, and we have also celebrated and reached out beyond our own congregation. For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Children’s and Youth Outreach
The kids of UUWaco reflect our values of compassion and inclusion not only in their everyday lives, but in social action outreach. Starting in 2010, UUWaco’s RE program began funding multiple Kiva.org loans; each year the money is reinvested; so far the UUWaco kids have lent over $1,000 in 41 separate loans.
Help for Local Dogs & Cats
We always include our kids in activities to support the animal rescue groups in our area. Such as building cones-of-shame to benefit Waco’s Animal Birth Control Clinic. The plastic cones which recently spayed and neutered animals must wear for safety take some assembly; by putting together 200 cones, the kids of UUWaco saved the ABC Clinic enough money to perform six free or low-cost surgeries for Waco’s pet and feral population!
In April, as a part of our Web of Life theme, we got the whole congregation involved in supporting the Animal Birth Control Clinic and the Waco Humane Society. See more about our April is for Animals events.
Local Interfaith Outreach
UUWaco is a member in good standing of the Greater Waco Interfaith Conference, a group of churches, temples, mosques and similar organizations in the Greater Waco area which seeks to strengthen the ties of faith and find similarities among our diversity. UUWaco’s presence on the Interfaith Council can be seen in the local “Tours of Understanding,” the Interfaith Thanksgiving Feast, and the 9/11 Candlelight Vigil, held each year at the Islamic Center of Waco.
UUWaco participates each year in the Unitarian Universalist Service Committee’s Guest at Your Table campaign, raising money for UU social justice work around the globe. We are also a Fair Share congregation, participating in local, district and regional UU events and opportunities. In addition, we recently joined the Texas Unitarian Universalist Justice Ministry, seeking to connect with other Texas congregations for social justice outreach.
Community Social Action
Meals on Wheels
UUWaco has been an active participant in the Central Texas Meals on Wheels program since 2006, packaging and delivering hot meals to 30 – 50 seniors twice per week. Volunteers are always welcome, and it only takes an hour a week!
Talitha Koum Angel Tree
Each holiday season, UUWaco members and friends “adopt” a family from the Talitha Koum Institute and provide new gifts and clothes for the children of these families.
Habitat for Humanity
As part of our community outreach, UUWaco participates each year in the Habitat for Humanity Interfaith Build, working alongside area churches, temples and mosques to build homes for low-income families. Want to swing a hammer? Contact the Social Action Team.
Named after UU patriach Ralph Waldo Emerson, Waldo’s Coffeehouse organizes concerts anywhere from twice a year to monthly, bringing local singers, songwriters, instrumentalists and assorted music makers to our sanctuary for an evening of music. Profts are split between the UUWaco Social Action budget, used in local social justice efforts, and a local charity such as Planned Parenthood, selected by the UUWaco Waldo’s team. One recent Waldo’s, in October 2013, raised more than $1,000 and allowed us to reach our social action goal of funding a second water well in Ethiopia! Wanna hear about upcoming performances? Get on our mailing list!
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