In the words of past participants…
Mara Iverson is a young adult from the Unitarian Church of Montpelier, VT who recently participated in UUCSJ and the UUA's GROW Racial Justice 2017 in New Orleans. Mara is a member of Central Vermont SURJ (Standing Up for Racial Justice) and is the co-chair of the...
Losing Our Chains has been reposted with permission from Blue Boat. You can find the original posting here. Aisha Ansano is a candidate for Unitarian Universalist ministry, and serves as a ministerial intern at First Church in Boston, MA. Aisha is passionate about...
Join us as GROW 2020, the Grounded & Resilient Organizers Workshop, Becomes a Fellowship!
We are in hard, hard times. The fires of justice are burning all around us. We feel the rage, grief, and possibilities as this year has thrown us all in a loop. Our movements are having to respond to so many attacks at the same time. Now is the time to root down and skill up.
Join us as a GROW Fellow to help our movements respond. GROW Fellowship will be held August – December 2020. Building upon our previous GROW/Thrive/Shift programs beginning in 2015, it will equip UU (and UU adjacent!) young adults of color and white young adults with the skills, spiritual grounding, and community to engage in justice work within and beyond our Unitarian Universalist faith. It has been scheduled for the months leading up to and after big 2020 elections to build our capacity, relationships, and power in ways that can be of use to continuing this work for the long haul.
In a few different touch points held online throughout the months, we’ll explore theories and praxis of governance, time, conflict, imagination and economy/ecology through case studies, spiritual praxis, role plays, sharing forms of nourishment and sustenance, and building transformative relationships. The GROW fellows will come together to learn organizing skills from bold, grounded leaders, and to craft a strategic vision for our justice work in the coming year.
GROW Fellowship is a partnership between the UU College of Social Justice and UUA’s Thrive program for young adults of color.
Here are some of the touch points we are imagining for our time together:
- Covenant and weekly check-ins are important for a few reasons: these will be a place to name and practice our values of justice and equity, and create time together to make sure everyone is experiencing the space as healing and generative. This will help keep our group on purpose.
- Justice workouts will be quick 30-45 minute online gatherings each week for reflection, practice and solidarity actions. Sometimes, these will arise out of asks from movement partners. Other times, they include individually-tailored assignment to flex our justice muscles in deliberate and concrete ways.
- Occasional caucus spaces will offer the opportunity to gather based on our racial identities and to support one another in the work that is ours to do rooted in the lived experiences that have shaped our lives.
- Periodic ritual spaces will be rooted in honoring rhythms of the earth and our movements, with particular attention to the group’s needs in the lead up to and following the 2020 election.
- GROW Fellows will receive care packages, tangible and digital, that will include offerings for learning, nourishment, reflection and action.
Due to the impacts of the current pandemic, we will gather for group touch points online with invitations to frequently take our praxis offline, as well. A modest stipend will be available for those who are able to commit to consistent participation during the duration of the Fellowship. More details will be available as we review your applications.
We are drawing inspiration from cycles of the earth as we GROW together. The program will begin with a soft launch on August 1, known in some traditions as Lúnasa or Lammas, the midpoint between Summer Solstice and Fall Equinox. It will conclude around the Winter Solstice in late December.
We are still accepting applications from young adults who identify as Black, Indigenous and/or People of Color for participation in the Thrive cohort, and will review these applications on a rolling basis through August 1st, or until all slots are filled.
If you have already submitted an application, you will hear from a member of our team in mid/ late July to confirm enrollment and discuss the scheduling of our justice workouts and other group touch points.
This program is open to all alums of GROW / Thrive / Shift, as well as young adults (ages 18-35) seeking to commit to a spiritually-grounded community of praxis for these times. This offering is hosted by Unitarian Universalist institutions and open to all participants who are excited about integrating spirituality into your work for justice and liberation.