Thrive: Leadership Schools for Youth and Young Adults of Color

A group of young adult UUs of color take a goofy photo.

*REGISTER NOW!* 2019 Thrive Young Adult will be held on August 30-September 2, 2019 in New Orleans, LA. Registrations will be accepted on a rolling basis until the event is filled.

In 2019, Thrive Young Adult (for UU young adults of color) and GROW Racial Justice (for UU young adults of color and white UU young adults) will be held separately.

What Is Thrive Young Adult?

Thrive Young Adult serves Unitarian Universalist (UU) young adults of color (People of African Descent, Caribbean, Native/American Indian, Asian and Pacific Islander, Latina/o and Hispanic, Middle Eastern/Arab, and Multiracial), ages 18-35. For programs for UU youth of color, check out Thrive Youth!

"Having been part of Thrive gives me strength and energy when things seem hard, which goes a long way towards keeping me doing this work." —Thrive YA alum

"The session about internalized racism was very powerful for me. It really made me think about how pervasive white supremacy is and how it tries so hard to divide and conquer different groups...Reading about intersectionality is one thing but hearing about how it affects other people's lives through their voices is another." —Thrive YA alum

"For UU YAs of color, being connected with other UU YAs of color doing anti- racist work and racial justice organizing is an incredible opportunity. It reminds us that we are not alone." —Thrive YA alum

"I have never been surrounded with so many UUs of color...This was a life changing experience - physically, mentally, and most important, spiritually. I can't wait to create movements with these people. ​#​wegotdis​ ​#​lovewins​ ​#​downwithoppression.​" —Thrive YA alum

For more reflections, check out this blog post on Aisha's Thrive Young Adult experience.

Apply for Thrive Young Adult

*REGISTER NOW!* 2019 Thrive Young Adult will be held on August 30-September 2 in New Orleans, LA. Registration is open and will be accepted on a rolling basis until the event is filled.


The cost to participants for 2019 Thrive Young Adult is $325. The program fee covers all programming, lodging and food, but does not include transportation to and from its location city. Through the generosity of our donors, the Annual Program Fund and the Alumni Giving Program, some need-based financial assistance and travel subsidies are available. The UUA and the UU College of Social Justice subsidizes these programs in order to maximize participation (actual direct costs were $450 per person).


During Thrive Young Adult, young adults of color and white young adults are housed separately to allow for deeper exploration of racial and ethnic identity. Housing is dorm style, either at the Center for Ethical Living and Social Justice Renewal (CELSJR) or at a privately rented facility.

Partners for Thrive Programs

The Unitarian Universalist Association's (UUA’s) Office of Youth and Young Adult Ministries has long supported young people of color within our faith through annual leadership schools. The UUA has been grateful to collaborate with UU College of Social JusticeSide with Love and the Center for Ethical Living and Social Justice Renewal.

What is GROW Racial Justice?

Grow Racial Justice is a collaboration of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) and the Unitarian Universalist (UU) College of Social Justice, along with Side with Love and the Center for Ethical Living and Social Justice Renewal. In two companion programs, young adults of color and white young adults set out to explore racial and ethnic identitiesnurture spirits through worship and spiritual practice and build transformative relationships. The cohorts came together to learn community organizing skills from bold, expert leaders, and to craft a strategic vision for anti-racism work in the coming year within and beyond our Unitarian Universalist faith.


Thrive is the newest iteration of the many ways that UU youth and young adults of color have gathered to nurture leadership and sustain spirits. In the past, through Diverse Revolutionary Unitarian Universalist Multicultural Ministries (DRUUMM) Youth and Young Adult gatherings, Leadership Development Conferences and Multicultural Leadership School, UU youth and young adults of color have gathered to form lifelong connections, carve out belonging, create practices of resilience and healing and build skills to lead.

For more information, contact UUA Youth and Young Adults of Color Ministry Associate Sara Green at

A group of alumni take a selfie at UUA headquarters. Caption reads "Who are you?"

Rest in belonging.


Cultivate resistance.

Soyal and Abhimanyu present to the group

Grow skills.

a group of women of color sit around a piece of chart paper

Share deeply.


Make way for healing and liberation.

A colorful altar with objects representing ancestry.

Nourish spirits.

Gather in community.