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Lead at GA
Lead at GA

Getting Involved at General Assembly

Hey everyone, Hannah, and Annalee here... your Youth Caucus business managers, and we’re so excited to help you make an impact at this year's General Assembly.  You are not only the leaders of tomorrow but the leaders of today.  This may sound a little daunting, but don’t worry, we’re here to support and guide youth and delegates who are youth through all the business of General Assembly! Want to be involved in the Wednesday Welcoming Worship? Have a story of a time you encountered resistance in a social justice context, resisted oppression or oppressive systems, or rejoiced in a social justice context?  Apply to be a storyteller for worship!

The Hardest Part of Doing Anything is Starting

The first thing you can do to get involved at GA simply show up to some workshops! The Business team will host two sessions (during workshop slots #3 and #4) along with a delegate orientation right after your mandatory youth caucus orientation.  The delegate orientation (Wednesday, 5:15 in room 217-219) serves as a great first step to becoming comfortable with the GA business.  This will be a time to ask questions and familiarize yourself with our faces because we are here to support you however we can throughout the upcoming week.   In our first Involved Youth Strategy session (Thursday, 5:00-6:15), Candid with the Candidates, you will have the opportunity to informally meet the UUA presidential candidates that we will be voting on.  This is a very special opportunity for Youth Caucus members, as it gives us a chance to have all of the current candidates’ undivided attention and gives you a clearer idea of which candidate you would like to support. Check out this Comparison of the Presidential Candidates we made, and bring your questions for the candidates to this session!   During the second session (Friday, 1:30-2:45 pm), Rock the Boat, we will discuss how we want to make an impact on our association and make our voices heard. We’ll help you achieve what you want to achieve. Strategize with peers and supporters to influence the decisions made about our association.   

Make an Impact

Another way to get involved and make an impact on our association is through the General Sessions. During these sessions, which happen from 8:45am to 12:15pm on Thursday, Friday and Saturday and 12:30-3:30pm on Sunday, the business of GA is brought forth, debated, and voted on. Attending General Sessions can help you better understand business and gives delegates who are youth the option of debating, making statements, and voting. This is where all the action happens during GA and it’s incredible to be a part of moments that change our UUA. Also, you have the opportunity to earn a ribbon for your name tag with us, by playing the renowned GenSesh BINGO.  If BINGO isn’t enough, there’s a bonus of getting to sit with us and ask us every question that exists, as we will be attending every General Session!

Be a Delegate

Being a delegate really is the key to having an amazing General Assembly. There are not a lot of communities in which adults affirm youth under the age of 18 as capable, informed and equal participants of a governing structure, so you should take advantage of it!  General Sessions also serve as a critical way in which we, as UUs, practice our Fifth Principle- the right of conscience and the use of the democratic process within our congregations and in society at large. We have a unique opportunity to take the UU values we all share and contemplate the best ways to put them into practice as an association. We, as youth, bring the unexpected ideas, the unanswered questions, and the unexplored routes. When we make the choice to speak up, stand with, or second an action, we are amplifying the voices of all the unrepresented youth and taking part in something much bigger than Youth Caucus, because it affects everyone at GA.  This is exactly why we need youth like you to become involved and lead during General Assembly, so UUs everywhere can have a new, interesting perspective: yours.

About the Author

  • Ted joined the staff of the Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministries in February 2010. He brings more than twenty years' experience using media to create social change by creating communications strategies and content for progressive non-profits, political campaigns, and cause...

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For more information contact blueboat@uua.org.

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