Good Neighbor Offerings
Each month we share our offerings from the 9:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. worship services with local and national non-profit organizations serving the community, particularly those serving people in need. A different group is selected each month to receive these much needed funds, such as the Read Aloud Volunteer Program, where UUCB members read to children in San Pablo and Richmond schools, and Brighter Beginnings, supporting low income infants and their families in getting the best start in life.
For more information, or to suggest a new Good Neighbor organization, please contact the church office.
Since 2011, through the generosity of UUCB members, friends, and Sunday vistors, over $40,000 has been donated to more than 25 organizations.
Good Neighbors of the Month
The mission of the Richmond Emergency Food Pantry is to provide food to West Contra Costa County residents in need. The Pantry has been providing this service for over 40 years. Typically, each family in need is given free-of-charge a food box weighing approximately 30 pounds. Even with the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano providing much of the food free or at very low cost, when one adds up the food, rent, fees, and insurance expenses, it still usually costs the Pantry between $7-8 to provide each box of food. Volunteers donate more than 400 hours each month. The Pantry provides food to more than 42,000 individuals annually.
To ease and end the crisis of homelessness in our community, Berkeley Food and Housing Project provides emergency food and shelter, transitional housing, permanent housing, and housing placement with support services to homeless individuals and families.
Founded in 1970, Berkeley Food and Housing Project has worked to ease and end the crisis of homelessness for men, women, and children in the Berkeley community. With programs ranging from free meal service to permanent supportive housing, BFHP provides a continuum of care to accommodate a broad spectrum of specialized needs.
BFHP assists low-income and homeless individuals with needs and disabilities that are not effectively met by mainstream social services. The agency hallmark is to provide services with compassion to foster a nurturing, healing environment that can effectively end an individual’s cycle of homelessness.More ...
The Greater Richmond Interfaith Program (GRIP) is an interfaith, multiracial collaboration founded in the late 1960s' that started providing services to the Greater Richmond community with the opening of our first food pantry in 1971. Many more organizations and initiatives followed, from farmer’s markets to land trusts, rape crisis centers to economic development agencies, all with the common goal of helping those in need. Meanwhile, new congregations continued to join the coalition.
Today GRIP is a vibrant and robust community outreach, advocacy and homelessness prevention organization encompassing over forty-one Catholic, Protestant, Jewish, Muslim, Sikh and Buddhist member congregations and individuals. Together, we work to address critical issues of human dignity and social justice that affect the poor, the homeless and the disenfranchised.
Celebrating the diversity of our community, we draw on our varied traditions and cultures, actively seeking solutions to transform the lives of individuals and families as we carry out a deeply held commitment to heal the world around us.
Today, our focus is on three core initiatives: providing food, shelter and supportive services to help homeless individuals and families make the transition to self-sufficiency. Our programs are administered by a small staff supplemented by a vast team of dedicated volunteers.
GRIP is governed by a 15-member Board of Directors drawn primarily from member congregations, and includes a representative from the homeless community. GRIP’s annual budget currently exceeds $3,500,000; $2,400,000 of which is earmarked for fiscally sponsored projects.
All Good Neighbor donations for the month of October will benefit GRIP.More ...
East Bay Housing Organizations - EBHO brings together community members, public officials, nonprofit housing developers, service providers, planners, professionals, and advocates. Collectively, we're building a movement to ensure everyone has a safe, healthy, and affordable place to call home.
Richmond Equitable Development Initiative - The Richmond Equitable Development Initiative (REDI) is a collaborative of advocacy, research and grassroots community based organizations working together in Richmond and throughout the Bay Area on environmental justice and social justice issues. REDI actively supports the need for quality, living-wage jobs and job training programs linked to growth industries and sectors as well as quality, affordable housing options, effective and connected public transportation networks and an overall healthier and cleaner environment. REDI conducts research and policy analysis, organizes community stakeholders and advocates for public policy and development that benefits instead of burdens low-income communities and communities of color. REDI’s aim is to protect neighborhoods and communities against the potential for displacement or gentrification.
Dear UUCB Community,
As I have become more involved with CCISCO activities, I have learned that we UUs are thought of by many as "the people who show up." Yesterday, I received an invitation from CCISCO organizer and pastor, the Rev. Donnell Jones, to participate in a community prayer vigil to lift up the memory of Mike Brown and the people of Ferguson, MO. It seems to me, we are either a part of this community or we're not. If we are, we have an obligation to show up when we are needed.
We showed up 50 years ago, when Unitarian Universalists joined together with people of many faiths to proclaim that love was stronger than hate. As diverse theologically as we UUs are, this is probably the one thing that unambiguously unites us. We wear our yellow shirts as a sign that we have faith in the power of love, a love which reaches out to heal and transform. It takes a lot of work to "love the hell out of this world," as some prophetic UUs are saying, but it is the only way.
The vigil will be held at 7:00 p.m. at:
Miracle Temple, APC
2425 Cutting Blvd.
Tonight we have the opportunity to love the hell out of this world, side by side with our neighbors of faith in Richmond. I will be there. Please join me and the members of the Membership Ministry. We will gather at the church at 6:45 p.m. to carpool.
Rev. Jones' invitation is below.
A Macedonian Call for Mike Brown and the People of Ferguson
Greetings to you all.
We have been faced with a tragic injustice in Ferguson, Missouri. As clergy and people of faith we will stand with those who are painfully impacted by this deeply troubling situation. As we have experienced crime & violence in our own backyards, we can say that "your pain and suffering (Ferguson) has not gone unnoticed. We declare that we are "Our Brother's Keeper."
PICO Organizers & Leaders, Bishops, Clergy, and Community Leaders from across the nation aspired to have 1,000 member clergy gathering on tomorrow in Ferguson. Some of us were invited, but just can’t get there with such short notice.
Therefore, I HUMBLY ask Pastors to suspend your regular Bible Study sessions and community leaders to rearrange your schedules TOMORROW AUGUST 20th to join us at MIRACLE TEMPLE APC 2425 Cutting Blvd. Richmond at 7:00 pm for a PRAYER VIGIL for Ferguson. Several churches have made commitments to attend: Bethlehem MBC, Greater Abundant Life Ministries, Kingdomland MBC, Hope Lutheran (El Sobrante), Zion Hill MBC, and New Direction Ministries.
Please Join us as we come together not only as a community but as a nation as we stand with the people of Ferguson as witnesses to the collective wounds inflicted by an inexcusable over-militarized police response.
In His Service,
Donnell R. Jones
Community Organizer, CCISCO
Through the summer, many members of the congregation are continuing their activities with CCISCO (Contra Costa Interfaith Supporting Community Organization). We would love to have you join us for any of these activities, at which we are both making progress and having fun.
We continue to participate in “Ceasefire” walks through Richmond neighborhoods on Friday evenings. We start at a local church and engage local residents with a message of “alive and free.” UUCB members have been a strong presence at these walks.
Also, work continues as we try to ensure that the proposed UCB/LBNL Richmond Bay campus will benefit local communities in terms of job and business opportunities, educational programs, and housing remedies for probable displacement of residents. In July, we met with UCB’s Vice Chancellor for Real Estate and his staff to express our concerns. It was a productive meeting, but the work continues – this will be a 40-year project.
Meanwhile, your UUCB CCISCO team has been holding a series of meetings to explore future projects as we head into a new church year with our interim minister. Primarily, we want to ensure that as many congregation members as possible have an opportunity to participate in CCISCO activities. For example, we are working with Merrin Clough on ways that we might work together with the R.E. community on social justice issues.
For more information, contact Rev. Craig Scott.
Volunteers at UUCB have participated in a wide range of projects since our congregation affiliated with CCISCO. Within our church community, we continue with our conversations aimed at engaging more and more UUCB members with CCISCO. For example, we have been meeting with Merrin Clough, our Director of Family Ministry, and our RE committee, to explore ways in which families with children might become involved in CCISCO activities.
Members of our UUCB team often show up on Friday nights for “Ceasefire” walks in Richmond. Each Friday we start from a different church and we walk through the neighborhood spreading our message that we want for the residents to be “alive and free.” One Friday in April, our walk took us through a section where a 16-year old boy had recently been shot and killed. The neighborhood residents were nervous and anxious to talk with us. Afterwards, we met at the local church to debrief and to pray together. Many of us were in tears. This felt like a redemptive act for the community and for us, as we articulated a life-affirming message in the face of tragedy.
Our Good Neighbor organizations include:
Alameda County Child Abuse Prevention
Alameda County Community Food Bank
Albany Community Foundation
Bay Area Women Against Rape
Berkeley Emergency Food Pantry
Berkeley Food & Housing Project
Berkeley Women's Daytime Drop-in Center
Contra Costa Interfaith Supporting Community Organization (CCISCO)
Child Abuse Prevention Council-Contra Costa
Community Alliance for Learning
Contra Costa County Winter Nights Shelter
Dorothy Day House
East Bay Agency for Children
East Bay Sanctuary Covenant
Food Bank of Contra Costa & Solano
Greater Richmond Interfaith Project
Green For All
Lavendar Seniors of the East Bay
Meadville Lombard Theological School
Richmond Emergency Food Pantry
STAND! For Families Free of Violence
Starr King School for the Ministry
Sustainable Contra Costa
Ujima Family Recovery Services
Unitarian Universalist Justice Ministry of California
Unitarian Universalist Service Committee
Transgender Law Center
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