STEPS TO SOCIAL JUSTICE
A Newsletter from the Unitarian Society of Germantown
January 2017

As members and friends of USG, we are committed to being compassionate agents for social justice. Each month we will focus on one of the many social justice paths that our members walk, as well as point to other paths that are being walked that month.
JANUARY'S FOCUS: MLK DAY OF SERVICE

Our second UU Principal is justice, equity and compassion in human relations. This month is our chance to show compassion for our neighbors on
January 16's  Martin Luther King Day of Service. Sign up today to join more than 400 volunteers doing more than 30 projects that USG is coordinating this year. See the MLK Day webpage ( MLKPhillyUUs.org ) and the USG website ( usguu.org ) for information on how YOU can participate.


This month's newsletter includes:
  • MLK Day at USG
  • MLK Day Projects
  • Winter Coat Drive
  • Holiday Mitten Tree
  • Share The Plate
  • Other Social Justice Paths
    • Monthly White Privilege Conversation
    • New ERC Model
    • UU House Outreach Food Drive
    • UU Greater Philly Social Justice Facebook Page
    • Newsletter Articles



Join us on Monday, January 16, 2017, at USG as we celebrate Dr. King's legacy by working together to serve our communities in and around Germantown. The Martin Luther King Day of Service is a wonderful opportunity to affirm your support for the values of justice and compassion that ran through the life and legacy of Dr. King.

Click here to pre-register online. On site registration at USG will begin at 8:00 AM, Monday, January 16, 2017. Coffee, bagels, and other light refreshments will be provided. A brief non-denominational worship service will begin at 9:00 AM, led by Rev. Kent Matthies and focusing on Dr. King's life and accomplishments. Volunteers will leave for their projects at 9:30 AM. Projects will last for varying amounts of time. Most will be completed before 12:30 PM.

MLK Day lunch making 2

Pre-registration is strongly recommended and it closes on 
Saturday, January 14, 2017, at noon.

Off-site projects

Project E-01 Winter Essential Kits
Volunteers will prepare and deliver winter essential kits for local seniors.This opportunity is appropriate for age 10+ with supervising adults who can drive. 10 volunteers needed, ages: 10+

Project E-02 Interim House-Carriage House Cleaning
Volunteers will do heavy cleaning of carriage house at a local service agency. 4 volunteers needed, ages: 14+

Project E-03 Interim House-Copy Room and Basement Cleaning
Volunteers will do heavy cleaning of the copy room at a local service agency. 
4 volunteers needed, ages: 14+

Project E-04 TCRC  Cleanup and Painting and Laundry
Volunteers will help clean inside the headquarters of a local service agency.
10 volunteers needed, ages: 14+

Project E-05 Green Tree Bulk Mailing
Volunteers will assist in preparing a bulk mailing for a local service agency. This opportunity is appropriate for ages 14+ with accompanying adult. 
6 volunteers needed, ages: 14+

Project E-06 FUMCOG Soup-Making
Volunteers will make soup for a local soup kitchen. This opportunity is appropriate for ages 14+ with supervising adult. 
10 volunteers needed, ages: 14+

Project E-07 PIHN Plate/Bowl Making
Volunteers will make or glaze ceramic bowls to be used at PIHN Empty Bowl Dinner fundraiser. 40 volunteers are needed in two shifts of 20. Half the group will do glazing and half will make bowls. Volunteers are asked to contribute $5 for supplies. All ages. 

Project E-08 Wissahickon Cleanup
Volunteers will sanitize toys, clean pre-school rooms, and generally re-fresh areas for a local service agency. 20 volunteers needed, all ages.

Project E-09 Wissahickon Crochet and Knit
Volunteers will crochet/knit scarves, hats, and put together blankets for seniors at a local service agency. 7 volunteers needed, ages: 11+

Project E-10 Kaysim Court
Volunteers will interact with mentally handicapped residents - play games and listen to live music. 8 volunteers needed, ages: 11+

Project E-11 PIHN Cleanup
Volunteers will sanitize toys and clean up at a day center for families in transition. 12 volunteers needed, ages: 11+

Project E-12 Germantown Life Enrichment Cleanup
Volunteers will conduct clean-up projects, plant seeds and paint. 
20 volunteers needed, ages: 8+

Project E-13 Cliveden Convalescent Center
Volunteers will play games, do art projects, enjoy music, interact with the elderly. 20 volunteers needed, ages: 14+

 On-Site Projects at USG

Project I-01 USG Soup-Making
Volunteers will make soup for a local soup kitchen. This opportunity is appropriate for ages 14+ with supervising adult. 
6 volunteers needed, ages: 12+

Project I-02 Card Making
Volunteers will make non-personalized Valentine's cards for seniors at a local service agency. This opportunity is appropriate for children with a supervising adult. 30 volunteers needed, ages: 5+

Project I-03 Breakfast Bag Assembly
Volunteers will assemble breakfast bags. This activity is appropriate for all ages with a supervising adult. 15 volunteers needed, all ages

Project I-04 Thank You Notes
Volunteers will write thank you notes to MLK Day donors. 20 volunteers needed, all ages.

Project I-05 Lunch Bags Decoration
Volunteers will decorate lunch bags for delivery to a local service agency.
50 volunteers needed, all ages.

Project I-06 Snack Bag Assembly
Volunteers will assemble trail mix bags for delivery to local school or service agency. This opportunity is appropriate for ages 5+ with supervising adult. 20 volunteers needed, ages: 5+

Project I-07 Deliver Breakfasts, Lunches, Snacks
3 drivers (with car); others are needed to deliver bagged lunches, snacks, soup to local social service agencies as far as Center City. A passenger is encouraged. 8 volunteers needed, ages: 18+

Project I-08 Winter Coat Collection
**DONATION OPPORTUNITY** Winter coats will be collected and delivered to local social service agencies. Please bring your new or gently worn adult and children coats to USG for donation. No sign-up required.

Project I-09 UUPLAN Advocacy
Volunteers will participate in an inside letter writing around gun control or an outdoor petitioning advocacy campaign focusing on immigration and economic justice. 30 volunteers needed, ages: 14+

Project I-10 Lunch Bag/Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich Assembly
Volunteers will assemble lunch bags for delivery to local service agency. This activity is appropriate for ages 9+ with a supervising adult. Peanut Butter will be used in this activity. 60 volunteers needed, ages: 9+

Project I-14 Germantown Avenue Clean Up
Volunteers will clean up trash and debris on sections of Germantown Avenue. 10 volunteers needed, ages: 14+

Project I-15 PIHN Houses Advocacy Project
Volunteers will build cardboard houses to collect donations for PIHN.
15 volunteers needed, ages: 5+

Projects at Philadelphia Public Schools

Project S-01 Henry School Clean Up
Volunteers will do general cleaning at a local public school. This opportunity is appropriate for ages 15+ with supervising adult. 
10 volunteers needed, ages: 14+

Project S-02 Lingelbach School Cleanup
Volunteers will with indoor and outdoor cleanup. 
20 volunteers needed, ages: 14+

Project S-03 Houston School Cleanup
Volunteers will help paint and clean. 10 volunteers needed, ages: 14+




Every year thousands of men, women and children in the Philadelphia area live through the winter season without a winter coat. Once again, USG is collecting new or gently used coats to assist local agencies in their mission to provide coats to those in need. Please drop off your coats, children and adult sizes, in the vestibule area under the name tag board. Coats will be collected on January 16 during the Martin Luther King Day of Service.




Mittens

Although the tree is gone, we are still collecting warm hats, scarves and mittens for children ages 1-12. They will be taken to Cradles to Crayons on January 16 during the Martin Luther King Day of Service.




share the plate
SharethePlateSHARE THE PLATE: JANUARY 15

Each month USG passes the plate for a charitable organization. This past year, Share the Plate has donated over $14,000 to local community and international organizations serving children, families, those without homes, without jobs, those returning from prison, and immigrants new to Philadelphia. The Share The Plate Task force welcomes suggestions from the congregation: sharetheplate@usguu.org .

On Sunday, January 15, the Share The Plate will support the Martin Luther King Day of Service.



OtherSJOTHER SOCIAL JUSTICE PATHS

Ideally all white people spend some of their time examining their privilege and reflecting on ways to give it up. This is a very deep personal process that is essential to becoming a truly equal society.With the goal of helping the white people of USG on this journey, we will be offering a variety of resources and a monthly time to share experiences with and feelings about this process.

For January, please read (even if you don't join us for the conversation)  Spiritual Autobiographies Told Through the Lens of Race from a United Church of Christ (with whom the Unitarian Universalist Association developed the Our Whole Lives sexuality education curricula.) 

Sundays, January 15, February 12, March 19, April 9 from 12-2pm and May 21, 4-6pm.
This class will be facilitated by Eli Scearce, Gail Mershon, Sandy Campbell and Treva Burger and is offered through the Ending Racism Committee.

   
Our incredible Ending Racism Committee (ERC) is pleased to announce new leadership for the start of 2017. Replacing Kay Weiser as chair will be a team of three co-chairs. Each co-chair will lead a subgroup. Service - led by Judith Dederick (jgdederick@gmail.com), Public Witness - led by Barbara Dowdall (gtnbassoon@aol.com), and Education - led by Parvathy Menon (parvathyvmenon@gmail.com).

We express our gratitude and thanks to Kay Weiser for her many years of service as Chair. ERC would also like to thank Connie Simon for her support and guidance!


We couldn't have done it without you: 
  • Collecting more food and paper goods than we ever collected before during our two month Holiday Food Drive. 
  • Having close to 20 volunteers giving nearly 70 hours to help us with sorting, packing and delivering bags. 
  • Assembling more than 250  bags and delivering them to 150 older adults in northwest Philadelphia.
  • Giving cash donations that allowed us to give each person fresh fruit with their bags.
All of your efforts combined to make the holiday season joyous to the staff, the volunteers and most of all the seniors in northwest Philadelphia. We thank you for your thoughtfulness, energy and time. 

Again we must say, we could not have done it without you.

UU Greater Philly Social Justice Facebook Page

USG members are involved in a multitude of social justice projects. To view the latest activities and post new ones, join the UU Greater Philly Social Justice Group on Facebook.

Newsletter Articles

Articles for February's social justice newsletter are due on Tuesday, January 10, 2017. Send them to Dennis Strain, dennis.strain09@gmail.com.



Unitarian Society of Germantown | 215-844-1157 | admin@usguu.org | usguu.org
facebookSTAY CONNECTED:
USG's Social Justice Facebook Page: USG members are involved in a multitude of social justice projects. To view the latest activities and post new ones, join the USG Social Justice Group on Facebook.