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A group of young adult UUs of color take a goofy photo.
Apply Now for Thrive Young Adult 2017!
Thrive: Leadership Schools for Youth and Young Adults of Color

Thrive Young Adult, part of Grow Racial Justice, was held in New Orleans, LA on June 17-20, 2017 right before our General Assembly. Look for more information and applications here later for 2018 Thrive Young Adult to be held in the fall of 2018.

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

Thrive Young Adult 2017

Thrive Young Adult 2017 took place as part of the Grow Racial Justice event, a collaboration of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) and the Unitarian Universalist  (UU) College of Social Justice, along with Standing on the Side of 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 Young Adult, the part of Grow Racial Justice that is for UU young adults of color, strives to go deeper into complex questions about identity, power, spirituality and leadership. Participants explore their roles as young adults of color in our UU movement, build relationships with one another around intersecting identities, share practices for healing and resistance, and support each other on the path toward liberation. 


A link to the online application will be available here later in 2018.


Thrive Young Adult was held on June 17-20, 2017 right before General Assembly. Participants were encouraged to stay for General Assembly, June 21-25, 2017 and offer leadership in building community, leading workshops, and moving forward our commitments to racial justice. 


The cost to participants for Thrive Young Adult 2017 was $350. The program fee covers all programming, lodging and food, but does not include transportation to and from New Orleans. 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 are subsidizing this program in order to maximize participation (actual direct costs are $450 per person).


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. Thrive Young Adult, as partner of the UU College of Social Justice's Grow Racial Justice, is grateful to collaborate with Standing on the Side of Love and the Center for Ethical Living and Social Justice Renewal.


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 Leadership Development Associate for Youth and Young Adults of Color at yayaofcolor [at] uua [dot] org.

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