Grants boost 17 projects involving young people
By United Methodist News ServiceThe United Methodist Church's social action agency has awarded almost $150,000 in grants to 17 projects involving young people.
Several of the projects use music, art and drama to teach about justice.
Board of Church and Society has made the grants with funds obtained
through the denomination's Shared Mission Focus on Young People
initiative. Of the $149,050 total, $39,000 will go to four projects in
central conferences (outside the United States) and $110,050 to 13
projects throughout the United States.
Each program must include
leadership from people between the ages of 12 and 30, according to the
grant criteria. The projects also must include people from the community
that is benefiting from the planning and implementation. The grant
application needs to include information about community assets and how
the project reflects the denomination's Social Principles.
the Diversity Gap," a project of the United Campus Ministry at the
University of Ohio in Athens, has been awarded $7,500 for a program that
will use drama to teach youth and young adults about diversity issues.
Athens is a county seat and college town in Appalachia.
of $8,550 is being given to Miami Urban Ministry for the Above Ground
Youth Music and Leadership Program. The program for neighborhood youth
was designed and promoted by youth leaders, and uses arts and music. St.
John's United Methodist Church and four Miami community organizations
Inner-city youth plan to write and produce a musical
for Street Theater on Broadway, sponsored by Broadway United Methodist
Church in Cleveland. The production will be partly supported by a $7,500
Another Broadway United Methodist Church - this one in
Chicago - garnered a $7,500 grant for Gather, a program offering music,
hot meals and safe haven in an urban environment plus opportunities for
discussion of life issues.
In Oranienburg, Germany, the mission
church has begun a "Kirche im Container," or Church in a Box. A $15,000
grant will assist this program, which provides a shipping container
outfitted as a church to residential areas that do not have churches.
Unemployment and racism are issues in this area of former East Germany.
Developing leadership is a primary goal.
The Youth for Peace
Advocacy Program of the United Methodist Action for Youth is being given
$12,500 for its work. The program seeks to develop peace advocates on
college and high school campuses in the Northwest Mindanao Philippines
Annual Conference. The advocates' training will address issues such as
domestic and political violence.
In the North Central Philippines
Annual Conference, a program of the United Methodist Youth Fellowship
of the Philippines will receive $7,500 for a youth center. Called TULAY,
for To Unite in Love and Action Young People, the center's activities
include tutoring, leadership training, discussion of issues and advocacy
empowerment. "Tulay" in the local language means "bridge."
$4,000 grant is being given to the Liepa United Methodist Church in
Latvia for a program called "Lode Atrums." It offers jobs building
racecars and encourages leadership in economic justice in this former
Soviet bloc country, where unemployment is a major concern.
or Children Achieving Maximum Potential, is receiving a $10,000 grant
for an after-school tutoring program. The money is being given to Myers
Park United Methodist Church in Charlotte, N.C., which shares leadership
with two community groups.
In Project Transformation, 18- to
23-year-olds will provide leadership in a day camp for 5- to
12-year-olds, while exploring lay vocations for themselves. Oklahoma
City Cooperative Urban Parish has received a $10,000 grant for the
The Youth Leadership Project at Hughes Memorial United
Methodist Church in Portland, Ore., is slated to receive $9,000. In
this project, youth leaders and adults of all ages provide services to
children 5 to 15 years of age.
Harvest of Hope, a ministry of the
Society of St. Andrew hunger relief agency, received $10,000 to hold a
Midwest event for senior high students, with leadership by young adults
and adults. Harvest of Hope programs feature extensive study of the root
causes of hunger, and students also provide hands-on services, such as
gleaning and working in a food bank or soup kitchen. Worship and
spiritual growth are important components.
A Sidewalk Sunday
School Ministry by the Desert Southwest Annual Conference will receive
$10,000. A 14-foot box truck will be converted to a traveling church for
this youth-led project that targets at-risk communities.
Jeremiah Project is a home-repair mission by junior high youth. Most of
the providers and recipients are Native Americans in rural Virginia. The
project, conducted in partnership with the Virginia Annual Conference
and three of its districts, received a $5,000 grant.
housing is a major issue for the Alabama Rural Ministry program in the
Alabama-West Florida Annual Conference, which received $10,000 for this
A $5,000 grant was given to the South Dade Haitian United
Methodist Mission in Miami for a program called "Empowering and Building
Young People - 21st Century." This immigrant community faces problems
of extreme poverty, discrimination and illiteracy. The 12- to
30-year-old providers offer after-school programs and workshops and
bring in guest speakers from the larger community to promote advocacy
and multicultural cooperation on public issues.
High school and
college students will have an opportunity to explore advocacy and
campaigning for social justice at the Summer Leadership Institute being
held in New Orleans by Rayne Memorial United Methodist Church and Mt.
Zion United Methodist Church. A $10,000 grant will help fund the
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