UUA & UU-UNO Empower Youth
YOUTH EMPOWERMENT AT THE UNITED NATIONS
In 1962, the Unitarian Universalist Association United Nations Office (UUA-UNO) was established, and with it, the envoy program. Ideas of a Youth Envoy program began in 2008 when office interns took the initiative to maintain youth connections after attending Spring Seminar. Young Unitarian Universalists continued to reach out wanting to bring international social justice work to their congregations. We were able to get funding for this program from the (UUFP) and the pilot program was launched in February of 2011 on our home turf, the Metro New York district.
With the start of the pilot program, the Youth Envoy program has become a permanent and influential component of the United Nations Office. Bringing attention to our ambitious youth, this program works to build connections, empower young UUs, and encourage involvement between congregations and the UUA-UNO. We successfully created a youth conference called “Justice Con,” which, in its inaugural year, was held at the First Unitarian Universalist Congregation in Brooklyn, New York. At this Con youth received facilitator training, organized events in their respective congregations, and had fun! The Youth Envoy Program is an accessible way for youth to get involved in leadership positions and expand their interest in global social justice work. Youth are offered opportunities to carry through their responsibilities and maintain intergenerational relationships.
Youth have ideas. Youth have opinions. Youth have a voice!
The Youth Envoy Program is a fantastic and simple way to connect youth groups to the greater congregation and community. Intergenerational ties within the church are formed and strengthened through working as an envoy team to put together a United Nations Sunday Service. Congregants of all ages are brought together through attendance of our annual Spring Seminar as they work for international social justice! This year’s Spring Seminar will focus on LGBT Human Rights. Start fundraising now and get a group together! Come one, come all, envoys and non-envoys, young adults and seniors, youth and adults, UU’s and non-UU’s — all are welcome and encouraged to get involved.