ALUUC Social Action Committee and Unitarian Universalist Service Committee (UUSC) Updates
Fair Trade Products
The ALUUC Social Action Committee (SAC) will be selling Fair Trade products (coffee, teas, cocoa, and chocolate bars) the second Sunday of each month. The purchase of fair trade goods through the UUSC Coffee Project benefits agricultural cooperatives through UUSC’s Small Farmer Fund. The UUSC Coffee Project is collaboration between the UUSC and Equal Exchange, a worker-owned, fair trade, company based in West Bridgewater, MA. UUs have the highest participation rate of any denomination in Equal Exchange’s Interfaith Program!
Coffee from the UUSC Coffee Project is now being served on Sundays, following the service. Next sale date – June 10th.
Justice Sunday 2012: Justice Is the Human Right to Water
On May 13, 2012, the Social Action Committee led the Justice Sunday Service. We were very fortunate to have Emily Carroll, Senior Organizer with Food & Water Watch in Chicago. Food & Water Watch works to ensure the food, water and fish we consume is safe, accessible and sustainably produced. Emily discussed the issues of water privatization and what is happening in Illinois. She shared information about SB 3573 (Illinois Water Privatization Bill) and asked interested persons to contact their representative. Emily stated that SB 3573 aids private water companies in their quest to acquire publicly owned water systems and dramatically raise water rates, while at the same time providing poor service that can threaten public health and the environment.
The Social Action Committee will soon be reactivating the Scrip program to raise money and give church members a chance to donate to ALUUC while doing your normal shopping and without costing you a dime. “Scrip” is really just another name for gift cards. You buy them in advance and then use them when you do your shopping. The difference is that a percentage of each purchase comes back to ALUUC. Companies make a higher profit when gift cards are used because they get the money before having to provide the goods or services. They share a part of this higher profit with the church, and the result is that you pay the same price as you would have with cash, but ALUUC gets a piece of the profit. We will be using the Great Lakes scrip service and we need a volunteer to serve as Scrip Coordinator. This job needs someone who is good with numbers, organized, and ideally, a good promoter as well. Email John Malan (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you think you might be interested, and he can provide more information on the process.
Change for Change
Thanks to the generosity of ALUUC members and friends, $153.75 was collected for the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Springfield. The Social Action Committee has selected the Central Illinois Food Bank for the June Change for Change recipient. As many of you are aware, the needs at our local food banks increase during the summer when children no longer receive school breakfasts, lunches and/or snacks. The purpose of Central Illinois Foodbank is to collect donated food and grocery items from growers, manufacturers, processors, distributors, and retailers for distribution to charitable agencies serving people in need. The Central Illinois Foodbank, established in 1982 by a coalition of churches, distributes pounds of food annually to over 160 food pantries, soup kitchens, residential programs and after-school programs in a 21 county region. Central Illinois Foodbank is a member of Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger relief organization, and is a United Way certified agency.
A Note From the Social Action Committee
On Saturday, May 19, ALUUC hosted a booth at the Springfield Pride Event. UUs from as far away as Connecticut stopped to congratulate us for being there. Our tent was festooned with colorful flags of many different religious traditions, and people were very interested in the articles and pictures of Rev. Woulfe performing civil unions. The gift of free water and our colorful band of volunteers attracted people of all ages, ethnicities, and lifestyles. A heartfelt “Thank you!” goes out to all who helped out, and especially to those who braved the hot sun to make sure the message of the inherent worth and dignity of every person was heard: Brandi Boosinger, Shaun Boosinger, Margaret Demaree, Kurt DeWeese, Peggy Fenley, Beverly Holmes, Chris Hull, Shanna Hull, Mindy Miller, Susan Solon, and Lynnda White.
Third Sunday donations for June will be delivered to the Illinois Capital Area Chapter of the Red
Cross. The top priority of the Red Cross is to provide disaster relief to individuals, families, and
communities who have been affected by various forms of disaster.
During disasters, the Red Cross seeks to minimize loss, comfort victims, and help them restart
their lives by providing basic necessities in the form of Disaster Comfort Kits.
Each year hundreds of these comfort kits are distributed to individuals and families affected by
disasters. Items in a comfort kit are all sample sized bottles of small items and include:
- Toothbrush and toothpaste
- Shampoo and Conditioner
- Hair comb or brush
- Razors and shaving cream
- Body soap
- Coloring book
- Teddy bear
On Sunday, June 17 (Father’s Day) Marla Johnson and Victoria Vincent will be available to
collect the above items. If you have any questions, please contact either of them.
Justice Sunday is in full swing. This program practices UUSC’s approach to its work: collaborating at the grassroots level to build awareness and make a difference, through eye to eye partnership. During Justice Sunday, individuals and groups around the country turn their focus to the human right to water. UUSC has created a space to learn from and support each other.
Membership in UUSC helps achieve these goals too. Membership includes monthly Values in Action newsletters, semi-annual Rights Now magazines, and periodic action alerts tailored to your specific interest areas — to keep you informed, and provide you with tools to engage in the work with us. And we get to hear from you! Because advancing human rights is the work of many hands, we hope you will consider Justice Sunday a good time to renew or begin your UUSC membership. Become a member today at uusc.org/donate_justicesunday
UUSC is an independent membership-based human-rights organization and receives no funding from any government or denomination.
Join ALUUC Social Action Committee
Social Action Committee Members include Bernie Carver, Deborah Cavanaugh-Grant, Delinda Chapman, Peggy Fenley, Pat Fletcher, Vinnie Gupta, Linda Sievert Haynes, Stu Jacobson, Doug Liberati, Teresa Liberati, Vicki Lock , John Malan, Sally Millichamp, Michael Plog (Board Committee Liaison), Susan Solon, Lynnda White and Sarah Williamson. If you are interested in becoming a member of the ALUUC Social Action Committee, contact Deborah at SAC@ALUUC.org or Board Liaison Michael Plog.