Here is an example of how our congregations are providing support and filling a need for both UUs and the greater community. Navigators USA, a secular, all-gender scouting movement, founded at the Unitarian Church of All Souls, New York, is seeing explosive growth. We’ve been growing since 2012 at an average rate of 2 new Chapters a month until last November when the rate moved up to 5 new Chapters a month. Then in July, after the President’s speech at the Boy Scouts of America Jamboree, we have received over 20 new applications in August!
We believe that boys and girls need to get out into nature now more than ever and all scouting organizations need support and participation. That said, we’ve been hearing from parents across the country that policies may change but the culture in many local Troops remain challenging for some demographics.
Navigators USA is a bottom up movement similar to the UUA, as a membership service association. Our members are moving us toward a more family focused model with entire family participation in meetings and activities. Building community and social capital along with youth leadership is our mission.
Our growth comes without marketing, completely from Facebook and Google. People are searching for what we have to offer, including UU’s. Of the 189 Chapters started, 38 are sponsored by UU congregations. In many cases we help grow their congregations and strengthened their RE programs.
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