Local Gatherings for Spring Seminar 2022
A few congregations will provide physical space to offer local Seminar participants a chance to connect in person around what they’re learning through the virtual Intergenerational Seminar programming offered online. The participants would come together for a few hours on April 24 and April 30.
To look for a local gathering near you, visit the Side With Love events map and type in your ZIP code.
Hosting a Local Gathering
Thank you for considering hosting a local gathering at your congregation as part of the 2022 Intergenerational Spring Seminar, hosted by the UUA Office at the United Nations in partnership with UU Ministry for Earth, UUSC, and Side with Love! Check out the information below and when you're ready, submit the Hosting Interest Form to let us know your congregation is interested in hosting a local gathering.
Please note: This guidance was crafted for local gatherings hosted at a Unitarian Universalist congregation. Contact the UU@UN at firstname.lastname@example.org if interested in hosting a local gathering for a UU community at a university or other non-congregational setting!
What It Means to Host a Local Gathering
Your congregation would provide physical space to offer local Seminar participants a chance to connect in person around what they’re learning through the virtual Intergenerational Seminar programming offered online. The participants would come together for a few hours on April 24 and April 30. We’ll provide you with some materials and guidance.
We hope you’ll help by:
- Encouraging members of your congregation to attend the Seminar
- Inviting other congregations nearby to join you for the programs you’re hosting
This is a chance to build or deepen connections between local UU communities!
Benefits to Hosting a Local Gathering
By hosting a local gathering for participants of the UU@UN Intergenerational Spring Seminar, you’re part of a national movement to instill in Unitarian Universalist youth and adults a commitment to global engagement and the skills to take action locally to address global concerns. When more people from your congregation and neighboring congregations attend the Seminar, they’ll build connections with one another and can keep that going through local engagement beyond the Seminar itself.
Activities for Congregations to Host at Local Gatherings
These gatherings should provide time and space for attendees to process what they’re learning together, as well as to develop stronger connections to their local place. You might invite a leader to present on behalf of a local organization that’s working to address climate-forced displacement (or its causes or consequences) in your area. This could be the start of a new or deepening partnership between your congregation and local organizations.
The Spring Seminar planning team will provide facilitator guides and materials closer to the event to make this a success. We suggest that local gatherings happen on Sunday, April 24 and Saturday, April 30. Here’s what to expect:
- For Sunday, April 24th, local gathering hosts and participants will work on a modular community art project together as a way to reflect and engage our conference theme of migration and climate justice. Materials for the art project will be either mailed by the UUA, or be readily-available found and recycled materials. The conference planning team will also provide facilitation notes with a proposed agenda plan, opening/closing words, and tips for leading discussion.
- For Saturday, April 30th, local gathering hosts and participants will focus on their surrounding area, looking at how climate displacement and climate resiliency impacts the area. Workshop activities will include a community mapping activity, an exploration of scenarios for taking action on our theme, and discussion. All the facilitation notes will be provided. We hope the work on this day may generate seeds of future action on the theme!
- If you are so inspired, this day would be a great time to learn from local organizations working to create climate resiliency and to address climate-forced displacement in your area. If there are organizations you know about, consider inviting them to present about the work they do, helping build a relationship that will persist after the conference.
Local activities can take many forms! You may also want to incorporate any of the following into your local gathering:
- Getting involved in local actions or protests that are happening
- Guest speaker with experience or expertise related to the theme (e.g. from a local organization)
- Group conversations to reflect on Seminar learnings and how they relate to your locality
Focus on identifying who would be good partners to help participants to get rooted in understanding and familiarity with your local context and to get ready to take action for climate and migrant justice!
Guide to Hosting a Local Gathering
The UU@UN has created a checklist to help congregations host a local gathering in conjunction with the 2022 Intergenerational Spring Seminar. Here's what you'll need:
- Discuss with congregational leaders (e.g. minister, religious educator, social justice leader, board president)
- This sample outreach email (Google Doc) can help you get started.
- Reserve space for the local gathering:
- Contact whoever's in charge of scheduling at your congregation.
- Suggested times: Sunday, April 24 from 12-3pm and Saturday, April 30 from 12-3pm. (Specific timing and activities are up to the host congregation!)
- If possible, reserve space outdoors (for extra Covid safety), with an alternate indoor option in case of inclement weather.
- All spaces used for local gatherings must be fully compliant with ADA requirements.
- Confirm spaces are compliant with ADA requirements for physical accessibility and include easy access to all-gender and wheelchair-accessible restrooms.
- Submit a Hosting Interest Form. The UU@UN will be in touch with you to confirm.
- Receive confirmation from UU@UN staff that your congregation will host a local gathering.
- Add your Local Gathering to the Map of Local Gatherings (link and instructions coming soon!)
- Identify local organizations to partner with on Local Gathering Activities.
- Send an invitation to congregants in your congregation to register for the Seminar and participate in the Local Gathering activities that you're hosting. (UU@UN has put together some promotional materials you can use - and customize for your specific gathering!)
- Send an invitation to nearby UU congregations to register for the Seminar and participate in the Local Gathering activities that you’re hosting. (Here again are the promotional materials you can use - and customize for your specific gathering!)
- Closer to the event, attend a host support call with the conference planners to get last minute details.