Faith CoLab: Tapestry of Faith: The Wi$dom Path: An Adult Program on Money, Spirit, and Life

Activity 4: FAITHIFY and Other Crowdfunding

Part of The Wi$dom Path

Activity time: 20 minutes

Materials for Activity

  • Computer with Internet access, digital projector, and screen
  • Newsprint, markers, and tape

Preparation for Activity

  • Explore the FAITHIFY website. Visit the “About FAITHIFY” tab as well as some of the campaigns. Bookmark two or three different campaigns that you think will interest participants, choosing at least one the focuses on a social justice goal.
  • Write on newsprint and post, or share the web page that states, FAITHIFY's purposes:
    • Inspire a culture of innovation that extends the reach of UU values
    • Lower the walls between existing congregations
    • Ignite ministries in new venues, formats, and communities
    • Bridge geographic and generational borders using 21st century technologies
    • Help passionate individuals invest directly in ministries that excite them
    • Help ministry innovators reach a passionate public
      We envision a people with renewed faith and a Unitarian Universalism that is more connected, relevant, and vibrant.

Description of Activity

Explain the phenomenon of crowdfunding. You might say:

Crowdfunding is the process by which large, often widely dispersed communities can quickly come together to contribute resources to projects. Widespread Internet access and a growing array of websites that create relationships between donors and projects have made this approach possible and it has taken off.

Ask if participants are familiar with crowd-sourced projects or would like to share a personal experience. Then, show the group the FAITHIFY website and play the introductory video. Show the projects you have bookmarked and tell participants that there is a wealth of information on the FAITHIFY website to peruse at their leisure.

Call attention to the purposes of FAITHIFY, posting them on newsprint or projecting them. Invite comments and observations, asking:

How do these stated purposes align with Unitarian Universalist values? Which of your personal core financial values are reflected in this economic model?

Lead a discussion, using these questions:

  • What surprises, delights, or intrigues you about FAITHIFY?
  • How does it create relationships between funders and campaign owners?
  • What is the importance of telling a compelling story in a model such as this one? How can learning to tell compelling stories empower those who post projects?
  • How might FAITHIFY help your congregation or organization fulfill its mission to the local community, or a wider community?
  • Where could FAITHIFY put you in relationship with new groups in support of the mission of your faith community.
  • How can crowdfunding for specific projects through a site such as FAITHIFY become part of the mix of fundraising efforts in your congregation?

You may wish to use the final question as a bridge to the Faith in Action Activity for this workshop.