Social Justice Committee
The Social Justice committee meets via Zoom at noon after the Sunday service on the first Sunday of each month. All meetings are open to Manatee Unitarian Universalist Fellowship members and guests. We encourage our members to be informed and to work towards bringing about social justice changes together as a group as well as through individual efforts.
We invite leaders of local charities to tell us about their program, services and needs on Sunday either by presenting the main address or presenting a thumbnail description of their program. On these Sundays a special collection is taken for that local charity.
Frequently a member writes a thorough paper about an issue chosen in the Social Justice meeting. These Issues are available to members and friends on the website under “Issues.”
The monthly newsletter, UPDATE, gives commentaries about current concerns.
Manatee UU Fellowship supports:
- Legislation towards averting climate change.
- Manatee Clean Energy Alliance.
- Efforts to enable ex-felons to vote under Amendment 4
- Black Lives Matter movement.
- Move to Amend.
- The Medicaid for Senior Citizens petition for constitutional amendment to the Florida constitution.
- The Charter Resolution for Manatee County.
- The Ban Assault Weapons movement.
The Virtual Table reflects the Social Justice Table we have at the MUUF Sanctuary. We feature Current Social Justice Issues, as well as Local Organizations that makes fairness, nondiscrimination, human rights, and education their Purpose and Mission.
Throughout the year we support, via Special Collections, the following Charitable Organizations, visit their website for more information.
Chair: Mariano Vera
Women’s Resource Center
The Women’s Resource Center is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit agency that has provided women (and men) with life skills training, career planning and educational scholarships in Manatee & Sarasota Counties for over 35 years. We assist thousands of women in creating independent lifestyles by identifying problems, enrolling them in programs, and connecting them to appropriate resources they need.
Manatee Literacy Council
The Literacy Council of Manatee County, Inc. (dba Manatee Literacy Council) is a volunteer-based nonprofit community organization dedicated to increasing the level of the functional literacy of adults in Manatee County through teaching the skills of reading, writing, understanding, and speaking English. Manatee Literacy Council has served the community since 1978.
Unitarian Universalist Service Committee
The Unitarian Universalist Service Committee (UUSC) is a nonprofit, nonsectarian organization advancing human rights together with an international community of grassroots partners and advocates. We focus our work on intersecting roots of injustice to defend rights at risk due to criminalization and systemic oppression of people based on their identity. We support self-determination and defend the rights of people displaced due to climate, conflict, or economic hardships; and we respond to humanitarian crises as partners with people whose access to aid is most limited.
League of Women Voters of Manatee County
Our Vision : We envision a democracy where every person has the desire, the right, the knowledge, and the confidence to participate.
Our Mission: The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan political organization, encourages the informed and active participation of citizens in government, works to increase understanding of major public policy issues, and influences public policy through education and advocacy.
Turning Points Manatee County
Where can people turn when they are desperate for help with their housing situation? Our Turning Points team provides friendly, caring, compassionate assistance to people that come for help with a wide variety of issues. No one chooses to be homeless – it is not something young children aspire to. But when it happens to you or a loved one, we are here to provide basic services and help people move on a path to improve their situation, and ultimately, to independence if possible. If you are having trouble making house payments, keeping your electricity and water turned on, or looking for a more affordable housing situation in a safe environment, you have very few options for help available to you in Manatee County.
Our Daily Bread of Bradenton
Established in 1984 in response to the community’s need to feed the hungry regardless of race, color, or belief. Since then, with extremely limited resources and space, OUR DAILY BREAD has served over 2,000,000 meals.
We are a community-driven organization supported by the churches, foundations, numerous other community-oriented organizations, and most importantly, individuals like you.
Our location is at the One Stop Center, 710 18th Avenue West (next to the McKechnie Ball field)
The Coalition of Immokalee Workers
The Coalition of Immokalee Workers (CIW) is a worker-based human rights organization internationally recognized for its achievements in fighting human trafficking and gender-based violence at work. The CIW is also recognized for pioneering the design and development of the Worker-driven Social Responsibility paradigm, a worker-led, market-enforced approach to the protection of human rights in corporate supply chains.
Planned Parenthood delivers vital reproductive health care, sex education, and information to millions of people worldwide. Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc. is a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit under EIN 13-1644147. Donations are fully tax-deductible allowable under the law.
Hope Family Services
HOPE’s primary purpose is to provide services to survivors of domestic violence and help them stay safe, gain strength, and evaluate their options.
From the first program until today, HOPE has had one goal; to offer high-quality, life-saving services, which are confidential and offered at no charge for victims and survivors of domestic violence.
Also Youth Sarasota | Manatee
Empowering LGBTQ+ youth and their allies and creating inclusive communities.
Manatee Children Services
At Manatee Children Services, our team of more than 50 professionals is dedicated to helping abused and neglected children in Manatee County and the surrounding areas. Intervention, Treatment, Residential and Prevention are some of the Services by MCS Child Advocacy Center.
Health Start Manatee
The goals of the Healthy Start program are to reduce infant mortality, reduce the number of low birth weight babies, and improve health and developmental outcomes.
The Healthy Start Coalition of Manatee County’s board of directors allocates funding to local agencies to provide Healthy Start program services, which include:
- Prenatal and Infant Risk Screening done at OB/GYN offices and delivery hospitals
- Connection to Home Visiting and Resources through Coordinated Intake and Referral
- Individualized Care Coordination
- Breastfeeding and Childbirth education
- Parenting education and support
- Preventative Screenings for Intimate Partner Violence, Substance Use, Perinatal and Postpartum Depression and Child Development with Corresponding Intervention Pathways
- Smoking Cessation Assistance
- Home Visiting
- Community Education and outreach
- Baby items such as diapers, wipes, pack ‘n play portable cribs, breast pumps, baby blankets and baby clothing (availability based on private funding
Other Actions by Manatee UUF
- We provided 500 hygiene kits to the homeless in Manatee County. With the 2020 MLK Day of Service award to Manatee UU Fellowship for Downtown Ministries, the kits were distributed to the needy.
- Helped block a lawsuit preventing the building of a new rural hospital in SE Florida in 2019 through letter writing.
- Enabled our fellowship to meet and maintain Green Sanctuary standards as we show “respect for the interdependence of all existence of which we are a part.” (7th principle)
- Collected needed tangible items in our Wish List collections for local groups in need.
- Assisted Turning Points, which aspires to provide, coordinate, and facilitate services to the homeless and those at risk of becoming homeless in Manatee County. It’s One Stop Service Center served more than 6,900 persons with 161,100 services in the past year.
Created in 1989, the Green Sanctuary program is a path for congregational study, reflection, and action in response to environmental challenges. It provides a structure for congregations to examine their current environmental impacts and move towards more sustainable practices grounded in Unitarian Universalism.
Manatee Clean Energy Alliance
The Manatee UUF congregation has voted to sponsor the Manatee Clean Energy Alliance and work with its members to support Clean Energy in Manatee County by 2035. Sierra Club’s Ready for 100 is also striving for this goal. Until our building closed due to COVID-19, the alliance met monthly at Manatee UUF.
Go to manateecleanenergyalliance.org for information on the alliance.
Manatee Justice Ministry
Manatee Justice Ministry (MJM) is a countywide coalition of congregations and a member chapter of Direct Action & Research Training (DART). Its goal is to heed the call of our religious traditions by using our collective voice to create justice for the citizens of Manatee County by finding viable solutions to the systemic inequities and have those solutions implemented through municipal, county, and state referendums and legislation.
Manatee Unitarian Universalist Fellowship is a founding congregation of this coalition. This project is funded in part by the Congregation-Based Community Organizing Matching Grants Program of the Fund for Unitarian Universalist Social Responsibility.
More information about MJM activities and DART can be found at: https://thedartcenter.org/Manatee-County/
Manatee UU Fellowship is part of the Unitarian Universalist Association’s Welcoming Congregation Program that works to ensure lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people are full members of its faith communities. As such, our congregation includes and encourages new LGBTQ members and visitors as full and welcome participants. Recent activities of our fellowship have included offering a six-session course titled “Transgender Inclusion in Congregations”, and we participate each year in the Manatee Pride festival, all proceeds from which benefit programs of the ALSO Youth, which supports, encourages and helps empower LGBTQ youth in Manatee County.