Updated November 2, 2022

This page shows current opportunities to Work for Justice as our church mission statement calls us.

November 2022 Share the Plate Partner:

Sedona Grace

Your financial gifts are needed! Please go to www.firstuucolumbus.org/donate to support our church and our Share-the-Plate offerings. The Sedona Grace Foundation was created to keep pets with their families through difficult times through providing 74+ tons of pet food to central Ohio food pantries, including the Mid-Ohio Food Bank, Feed & Read Ohio, and Clintonville-Beechwold Community Resource Center. A pet is a source of comfort and security for a family. When families are going through financial hardship, the love pets provide decrease stress levels and improve mental and physical health. While we provide funding directly to organizations that feed people through JAM, we know that animals and pets are also important to First UU. You can learn more about Sedona Grace at https://sedonagracefoundation.com.

We are also holding a cat and dog food drive. You can bring pet food to the JAM table in Beach Hall on Sunday morning.


Building Responsibility, Equality, and Dignity

Contact: Alice Rathburn, eulala1905@me.com



BREAD Annual Assembly

Date: Tuesday, November 15

Time: 7pm

Location: Christ the King Catholic Church at 2777 East Livingston Ave, 43209. Virtual options also available

The Director of Public Safety, Robert Clark, as well as Columbus City Parks Environmental Planner Rosalie Hendon and City Forester Steven Horhut will attend, so we want to show up in large numbers!

Director Clark is expected to make a public commitment to a proven group violence reduction strategy and a formal reconciliation process! In addition, BREAD will ask for a commitment on the Public Tree Ordinance and updates will be given on Restorative Practices, Families First! Housing Now! and Municipal ID! There will be a report on the 2022 Listening Process, congregational caucuses, and election/installation of officers. BE THERE and bring others!

For details, contact the BREAD Team at bread@firstuucolumbus.org

  • NEW
  • 1.5 hours
  • Virtual & In-Person Options

BREAD Upcoming Events: Mark Your Calendar!

Nehemiah Action: Tuesday, April 25, 6:45-8:30 pm

  • NEW
  • 5 minutes
  • Virtual

BREAD Updates

Read the latest BREAD updates below:

Environmental Justice:  In BREAD’s quarterly meeting with Councilmember Elizabeth Brown, she shared that legislation protecting Columbus public trees is near completion and will be passed by February 2023. BREAD’s Environmental Justice committee will continue to meet with her and other city officials until we have legislation protecting our mature trees on private property!

“Stop Violence! Build Trust!”: After 8 years of pushing for proven group violence reduction strategies, a new initiative is underway called the Columbus Violence Reduction initiative. A team of six has been hired to work weekly, beginning in Winter 2023, with the National Network for Safe Communities (NNSC) to implement the initiative with fidelity.  Also, Public Safety Director Robert Clark has promised the committee to begin a formal reconciliation process in consultation with the NNSC to improve community trust in law enforcement. We expect Clark to make a public commitment to both at the Annual Assembly.

BREAD leaders participated with the US Attorney for Southern Ohio in a training for Active Bystandership for Law Enforcement for the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Department. BREAD has asked Police Chief Elaine Bryant to submit an application for the free training provided by the Georgetown School of Law. No commitment yet.

“Families First and Housing Now!”:  The FFHN committee continues to push city and county leaders to spend one-third of the American Rescue Plan dollars for affordable housing and also will hold Columbus officials accountable to spending the $200 million line item for housing of the upcoming bond package if voters approve it.  Next steps: 1) a demonstration at the end of November in front of the Crew Stadium and 2) a summit in February.

Juvenile Justice:  The JJ Committee met with Columbus City Schools Board President Jennifer Adair Friday, October 28th and Superintendent Talisa Dixon on Monday, October 31st to follow up on their commitment to have Restorative Practices in every school by 2026. Hear the report on those meetings at BREAD’s Annual Assembly on Tuesday, November 15th, 7:00 p.m., Christ the King Catholic Church, 2777 E. Livingston Avenue 43209.

  • NEW
  • 5 Minutes
  • Virtual


Democracy & Human Rights

Contact: Chris Johnson, contact-democracyandhumanrights@firstuucolumbus.org



Voter Registration!

The deadline is October 11 for November 8 general election.
Click below for all the info to register or change your address, as well volunteer opportunities to help others register, and more: https://firstuucolumbus.org/voter-registration-check
  • NEW
  • 5 minutes
  • Virtual

Connect with the Democracy & Human Rights Focus Group

Email us to let us know you’re interested in joining the team or receiving email updates. 

  • 5 minutes
  • Virtual


Environmental Justice and Sustainability (Eco-Justice)

Contact: Elaine Fujimura and Erica Barrett Morrison, contact-ecojustice@firstuucolumbus.org



Stay In Touch with Eco-Justice

Sign up for email updates from First UU’s EcoJustice group by emailing contact-ecojustice@firstuucolumbus.org.
Sign up for email updates from UU Justice Ohio’s state-wide Environmental Justice group by requesting to join the Google group here: https://groups.google.com/g/environmental-justice-ohio/
  • 5 minutes
  • Virtual

Learn About the Columbus Climate Action Plan

On Demand: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-EntWlvlGGw&t=1s

A recorded presentation on the Columbus Climate Action Plan, thanks to Simply Living for sponsoring. Erin Beck, Assistant Director for Sustainable Columbus explained that the city’s 2030 goal is to reduce greenhouse gases (GHC) by 45% for all sectors, not just city owned. Their goal for 2059 is to reduce GHC by 100%.  Here is a link to the plan and people involved. Jenna Tipaldi presented the Equitable EV Ready Parking Plan whose goal is to prepare EV parking/charging stations in all areas of the city, not just the higher income areas currently available. They anticipate the upfront cost of EVs will reduce and don’t want access to charging to be a barrier in the future.   City of Columbus Climate Action Plan
  • 1 hour
  • Virtual

Learn More about Environmental Justice and Sustainability

Click here to watch a video by Greta Thunburg about the intersection of industrialized agriculture, animal welfare, and climate change. (5 min)

Click here to listen to this episode of the How to Save a Planet podcast about what the climate movement can learn from Black Lives Matter and the intersection of Racial and Climate Justice. (45 min)

Click here to view free online courses by Project Drawdown on climate solutions (13 min-2 hours+)

  • 5 min-2 hours+
  • Virtual


Food [In]security

Contact: Jacques Angelino, 614-439-0245; 617 Woodsfield Dr., Columbus, OH 43214
by email: Stuart Smith, contact-foodinsecurity@firstuucolumbus.org



October: Undies Sundays

Anytime in October

Questions? Call Jacques at 614-439-0245

Calling for donations of children’s underwear of all sizes. Feed & Read Ohio also accepts donations of food and gently used items of all kinds.

Drop off donations to Feed & Read Ohio at the JAM table in Beach Hall on Sunday morning or outside Jacques’s house, 617 Woodsfield Dr., Columbus, OH 43214.

  • Family Friendly
  • 30 min
  • In-Person, Inside or Outside

November: Share the Plate with Sedona Grace and Donate Pet Food!

In November, we will be sharing our offering plate with Sedona Grace as well as donating pet food. You can bring pet food to the JAM table in Beach Hall on Sunday morning.

The Sedona Grace Foundation was created to keep pets with their families through difficult times through providing 74+ tons of pet food to central Ohio food pantries, including the Mid-Ohio Food Bank, Feed & Read Ohio, and Clintonville-Beechwold Community Resource Center. A pet is a source of comfort and security for a family. When families are going through financial hardship, the love pets provide decrease stress levels and improve mental and physical health. While we provide funding directly to organizations that feed people through JAM, we know that animals and pets are also important to First UU. You can learn more here: https://sedonagracefoundation.com

  • Family Friendly
  • 30 min
  • In-Person, Inside or Outside

Volunteer to sort Feed & Read donations

Socially distanced options available. To arrange a time, call Jacques at 614.439.0245

  • 2 hours

Cook at the YMCA

Back in Person Beginning in April!*

  • Dates: 4th Fridays
  • Times: 5-7:30 PM

*Must sign up ahead of time and be at least 18 years old.

The YWCA Family Center serves homeless families and connects them with resources to obtain stable housing. While at the center, families receive 3 nutritious meals per day, along with job search, transportation, and child care support. On the 4th Friday of each month, a small crew of First UUers prepare and serve a meal for the families. Currently, the time commitment is 2 1/2 hours, from 5-7:30 PM. You don’t need to be a chef, just willing to work as a team and get food ready to be served. Service credits are available for high school and college students who need them.

Limited to 4 volunteers, make meal (spaghetti w meat sauce, salad, fruit), put in styro containers and YWCA employees will deliver them to the rooms.

Contact Tim Hooks, hookstj “at” gmail.com to be added to the email list for alerts about opportunities to cook at the Y.

  • Volunteers Needed
  • 2 1/2 hours
  • In-Person, Inside

When will Faith Mission Cooking Resume?

Are you interested in cooking or serving a meal to people in need?

First UU is currently providing financial support to Faith Mission, as we do not currently have the volunteers or organization to resume our bi-monthly cooking, transporting, and serving of meals to Faith Mission.

Contact Amanda Hays at amanda@firstuucolumbus.org if you are interested in learning more.

  • Looking for Volunteers



Contact: Alice Faryna, alice.faryna@gmail.com



Sign Your Name for Reproductive Freedom

Sign the Declaration for Reproductive Freedom and text, email, or use social media to ask 3 friends to sign it too

  • NEW
  • 5 min
  • Virtual

Financially Support People Seeking Abortion

If you would like to provide direct aid to people seeking an abortion in Ohio, you can donate to Faith Choice Ohio Jubilee Fund

  • NEW
  • 5 min
  • Virtual

Get Trained

Sign up for Ramp Up for Repro with Pro-Choice Ohio to learn political advocacy tactics, repro lingo, and find the best way to get involved, or join a training with Faith Choice Ohio to learn more about how to raise your voice more effectively about reproductive rights.

  • NEW
  • 2 hr
  • Virtual

Connect With Others

Send an email to healthcare-justice@firstuucolumbus.org to be added to this new Google Email Group, which will help First UUers who are passionate about this work communicate with each other about what we’re learning and organize for next steps.

  • NEW
  • 5 min
  • Virtual


Support National Nurses United’s Campaign for Medicare for All

Email or call (202-225-4324) our Congressperson Joyce Beatty to ask her to sponsor HR 1976.  It can be that short and sweet, but if you have a personal story about a problem with our healthcare system, by all means, please share that story. Click here for more info.

  • 10 minutes
  • Virtual


Racial Justice & Immigration (RJI)

Contact: Jan Phillips, contact-racialjusticeandimmigration@firstuucolumbus.org



Sign up to receive email updates from RJI

by emailing contact-racialjusticeandimmigration@firstuucolumbus.org

  • 10 minutes
  • Virtual

Iranian Program and Dinner Fundraiser

Date: Sunday September 25
Time: 5:00-7:30 pm.
Location: Beach Hall. First UU Church of Columbus.
Cost for Dinner & Program: $35.
In Shahla’s Words:

My name is Shahla Davoodi. I’m Iranian I was an English teacher and trainer working for the ministry of education for more than 21 years. I studied English language teaching as a foreign language. I came to the US with a Fulbright Fellowship administered by Penn State University.

My husband is Bahman. He is an electric engineer and worked about 30 years in oil and copper refinery industries. He came with me.

We have two children: a son and a daughter. They are both in Iran now. Our son has a master’s degree in computer software, and he is a cyber security specialist. Unfortunately, he is in jail in Iran as a political prisoner. Because of him and having the Fulbright grant, which has been given to me by the US government, it is dangerous for us to go back to Iran. Therefore, my husband and I have requested asylum here.. During the asylum process, we are not allowed to work legally. Dick and Karen Dawson accepted us to live in their lower-level house. We highly appreciate their help because the large part of our living cost is housing, and they provide it for us unconditionally.

We are happy to have the chance to cook for this dinner event, in order to not only introduce Iranian food and culture but to help with our living cost. I appreciate the First UU Church and the Racial Justice & Immigration Committee assisting us in this regard.

  • NEW
  • 2.5 hours
  • $35
  • In-Person

Partnering with Sukkat Shalom to Resettle a Refugee Family

UPDATE: The family has just signed a lease!
Background: Kehilat Sukkat Shalom, a Jewish faith community who meets in First UU’s building welcomes us to join in helping resettle a family from the Democratic Republic of Congo through a new Catalyst/Community Partnership program with Columbus-based US Together and HIAS (formerly Hebrew Immigration Aid Society). The family of seven (two parents and five children ages 14-4) will be arriving the third week of July and we need to raise $5,000 to help support their resettlement. Please click the button to give as generously as you are able by sending a check, direct bank payment, or PayPal TODAY! (Please mark contributions: Refugee Settlement Support)

Here are three ways can help us help them! Thank you in advance!

1. Several household items are still needed:

  • Tall trash can
  • Pens. Colored pencils, And paper
  • Dinner plates (at least 7)
  • Xl Twin sheets  (two of the kids have XL Twin beds)
  • Queen Box Spring (they have a mattress)

Email contact-racialjusticeandimmigration@firstuucolumbus.org if you have one of these items to donate.

2. If you are willing to provide a meal for the family, please sign-up here. Home cooking and take out equally appreciated!

3. If you are willing to help with visits and outings including rides to a park, errands, or organizing an outing to a library, museum, or other activity, please sign-up here. The motel they are in is not an inspiring space to spend time day after day.

  • NEW
  • 10 minutes +
  • In-Person or Virtual



Contact: Amanda Hays, amanda@firstuucolumbus.org



Join our Black, Indigenous, and People of Color Network

As part of our goal to live into the ideas and dreams of Beloved Community, we acknowledge that for too long, People of Color have struggled silently within our community. We also acknowledge our part in perpetuating an insider/outsider culture and want to all we can to create space for those in our community who far too often find themselves on the outside looking in. As part of our effort to live into the 8th Principle’s call for accountability, we are working on building a Black, Indigenous, and People of Color network here at First UU.

If you identify as BlackIndigenous, or a Person of Color, we would love to share more with you about this developing group, hear your thoughts about what would be most supportive for you, and connect you with others.  Please email contact-bipoc-network@firstuucolumbus.org get in touch with Tamara Parson, our Black, Indigenous, and People of Color Network leader.

  • Virtual
  • 5 minutes

Learn about the Proposed 8th Principle of UUism

Read about the Proposed 8th Principle here:


  • New
  • Virtual
  • 5 minutes

Sign Up for Living the Pledge Anti-Racism Training

We are so excited to announce that we are kicking off First UU’s new anti-racist program, called Living the Pledge.  Living the Pledge workshops are in-depth workshops that delve into various aspects of racism.  Developed by the First Unitarian Universalist Church of Richmond, Virginia, Living the Pledge will now be First UU’s own anti-racist program. There will be three trainings this year, on a variety of days, times, both in-person and virtual. If you have any questions, feel free to email Living the Pledge Leaders at LTP-leaders@firstuucolumbus.org

See Dates and Register Now for Living the Pledge
  • 6 2-hour sessions, or 2 6-hour sessions
  • Fall, Winter, and Spring Sessions
  • In-person and virtual options
  • Weeknight, daytime, and weekend options

Join our Anti-Racist Allies Group

Usually Meets: 4th Fridays, 6pm-8pm

Our Anti-Racism Allies Group lifts up and support the efforts and goals of our Black, Indigenous, and People of Color network, as well as working to dismantle systems of racism and oppression within ourselves and within our community, so that we can fully live into the Welcoming Congregation that we all dream First UU to be.. We are asking all participants in this group to have gone through Beloved Conversations or our new program, Living the Pledge (see above to sign up).

Please email contact-anti-racistallies@firstuucolumbus.org to join the group.

  • 2 hours/month
  • Currently Virtual

How Have UU Taken Action?

We would love to hear about how you’ve taken action for justice, either through the opportunities listed on this page or other ways! You can tell us about your work for justice through this Google Form.