Community Plate/Sunday Collection
During every worship service and special event, we pass baskets for a free-will donation. We donate 50% of these collections to social organizations both in our community and in the larger world. These donations make a huge difference in people’s lives.
For 2/26/17 through March 2017, half of the funds collected every Sunday will be donated to The Somerset County Cultural Diversity Coalition. Founded in 1995, this human relations organization is dedicated to eliminating bias, prejudice, and bigotry in our county. They pursue this ideal through community roundtables, festivals, publications, a speaker’s bureau, and a Resource Directory. Somerset County Cultural Diversity Coalition acts as a catalyst for individuals, corporations, and community-based non-profit organizations by providing networking, referral services, educational activities, and promoting the value of diversity. Click here to learn more about the Cultural Diversity Coalition.
For January and February 2017, the recipient of these funds was Safe+Sound (formerly the Resource Center of Somerset). This organization seeks to empower victims of domestic abuse by providing protection, education, and resources such as counseling, support groups, and specialized youth programs.
The UUCSH Community Plate program is entering its 11th year in 2016-2017. To date, we have distributed more than $50,000. Most of this money has remained local, right here in Somerset County, NJ. For example, we’ve given to Interfaith Hospitality Network, Resource Center of Somerset County, Somerset Home for Temporarily Displaced Children, and the Arc of Somerset County.
We’ve also donated plate collection money to support statewide causes (e.g., Rainbow Families of NJ) and to support relief efforts in times of national or international tragedies (e.g., Tennessee and Kentucky flood relief, Massachussetts tornado relief, and Haiti and Japan earthquake relief). We try to select organizations that align closely with our UU principles and, when possible, we select a recipient organization that ties in to a theme that may be dealt with during Sunday services in a particular month.
The 2016 UUCSH stewardship campaign runs from March 20 to April 17. During the campaign, members and friends are asked to make a financial pledge to support the on-going ministry of the congregation. This year, we are focusing on the UUCSH Mission: Explore Spirituality, Engage Community, Transform the World. As we strive to discover how we will translate these words into action, we are also working to ensure that we have the financial resources to support new ideas, as well as to continue those things that mean so much to our congregation.
UUCSH does not mandate a specific giving level. Rather, we encourage members and friends to give as generously as possible financially, leaving it to individuals and families to define the amount. For giving guidelines, we recommend the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA) “Fair Share” guide for financial commitments. The Fair Share Giving guide (link below) provides suggested pledge amounts based on a graduated percentage of income. A household can elect Supporter, Sustainer, Visionary or Full-Tithe contribution, any of which count as Fair Share.
2016 Stewardship Campaign Materials:
Viridian — Green Energy Benefits the Earth and UUCSH!
Every time you turn on a light, you can support clean energy and this congregation…without spending a penny more!
UUCSH is an independent Viridian Associate, earning $2 each month for every Viridian customer who signs up through our account. Members, friends, visitors, and people we’ve never met can enjoy the cost-savings and peace of mind knowing you’re helping the earth by making environmentally conscious energy choices.
For details and/or to sign up click here or email us.
Annual Service Auction
Each year, we host a Service Auction to benefit the UUCSH and its mission. The auction is our major fundraiser (outside of our annual canvass) and is a wonderful opportunity for members and friends to enjoy each other’s company.
Items donated for auction include handicrafts, jewelry, quilts, game nights, themed dinners, professional services, child care, transportation to area airports, and much more. The auction consists of a communal meal (often a potluck) followed by a three-part auction. Click here to RSVP. Click here to donate.
The ACCESS Campaign is our way of financing our initiative to renovate our building to make it accessible to people with mobility limitations. ACCESS funds have been built through two capital campaigns, and we continue to welcome pledges and donations. For more information, please email us.
The Giving Network
The Giving Network was founded by this congregation to aid local families, individuals and shelters in need. Today, it is an independent non-profit organization that we support through fund raising, volunteer hours, and publicity. Our annual fall Tricky Tray is a fun, large-scale event that supports nearly all of the Giving Network’s operating expenses. To arrange for donation collections or deliveries: call 908-927-9001 or e-mail us.
We are in the process of developing a planned giving program so members, friends and visitors have a way to remember this beloved community in their estate planning. While our formal program is in development, members, friends and others are welcome to remember the UUCSH in their wills.