SAC Upcoming events and volunteer opportunities

  • September – October 2016

    Together we can make a difference!

    8:30am – 12:30pm

    The Social Action Committee has been asked to recruit volunteers to assist with registration at Belmont Serves on Monday, October 10, 2016 from 8-9 A.M. if you are interested please Your assistance will be very much appreciated.

    Belmont Serves also needs someone to gather the Church easels and take them to St, Josephs or to the home of one of the organizers to be available by
    8 AM on Monday, October 10th and then to pick them up and return them to the Church any time after 10AM.

    Please join your neighbors in Belmont’s 8th annual day of service on the Monday of Columbus Day weekend. 8:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Meet at St. Joseph Parish Hall (corner of Common & School Streets) and proceed from there to project sites for a family-friendly day of community service.

    Projects include: collecting & sorting donations for Belmont Food Pantry, Clay Pit Pond clean-up, sorting & labeling winter clothing for refugee assistance, and painting and other indoor & outdoor maintenance projects around town.

    To register & for more information:


    Belmont Serves makes it easy to donate to the Belmont Food Pantry.
    Here’s how it works:
    A grocery bag will be delivered to your door with instructions.
    Fill the bag with non-perishable items (canned goods, paper items, toiletries).
    Leave full bag on your doorstep/front porch before 8:30 a.m. on Monday Oct.10.
    Volunteers will pick up the bag from your doorstep and deliver it to the Belmont Food Pantry!
    Thanks for participating!!


    Putting Our Dollars Where Our Values Are:
    A Church-Wide Conversation on Fossil Fuel Divestment

    FCB Green
    Sunday, Oct. 23, 12:30pm, Monday, Nov. 7 at 7pm, Library

    All members are urged to attend an informational session leading up to the congregational fossil fuel divestment vote. Panelists will discuss the decision processes and financial experiences of other divested UU congregations, as well as UU values in relation to divesting. The attendees will be able to ask questions.

    Watch for more information and sign-up sheets at fall coffee hours.
    Sunday, Oct. 23 at 12:30 and Monday Nov. 7 at 7pm (overlapping a children’s choir practice).


    The Social Action Committee will be presenting our 2nd VDay event on February 17 and 18, 2017. V-Day is a global activist movement to end violence against women and girls founded by Eve Ensler. Our last event, readings from ” A Memory, A Monologue, A Rant and A Prayer” in 2014 was well received.

    This year’s theme for the National VDay movement is “Solidarity”.

    We are currently forming the Planning Committee. We anticipate that planning will begin in late October, early November, auditions in January with rehearsals starting until performance dates in February. NO EXPERIENCE NECESSARY. If you are interested in being part of the Committee please contact Jackie Neel at


    The Refugee Resettlement Project in Belmont is affiliated with the International Institute of New England (ILNE), which is the umbrella agency. It is anticipated that many families will be moving to New England in the next several weeks from countries including the following: Democratic Republic of Congo, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Burma, Bhutan, Somalia, Eritrea, Nepal, and Honduras.

    From Sam James:
    Belmont and Beyond Resettle Together
    Since the last posting there have been many changes for us as volunteers working with the International Institute of New England (IINE). I would like to bring you up to date.

    No More Bins, Please!
    First, please no more household bins. IINE received 36 bins in two weeks and they are swamped. In fact, one end of the gym at the local LDS church is overflowing with bins and household goods. In time they will be needed again and we will let you know when you can start to create more bins. One of the reason they were so swamped was the outpouring of people in our group that put them together. Bins are expensive and time consuming and neither was a deterrent for the groups that stepped forward and met the challenge.

    Volunteers and IINE
    IINE now has a volunteer coordinator, Peter Saati,
    Immediate Needs-
    Volunteers are needed to manage the front desk in the Lowell office. They are looking for volunteers who will commit to a regular four-hour shift, Monday-Friday from 9-1 or 1-5. This is great way to be involved with the families and help people adapt to life in Lowell. An orientation/training will be scheduled for all new volunteers. Contact Peter Saati at IINE,

    Additional opportunities available for volunteers include: helping a family learn where available resources are in Lowell, and employment coaching. Send Peter an email if you have a general interest in volunteering.

    Community Announcements:
    Winter Clothing for Refugee Families
    Our friends at Plymouth Congregational Church are coordinating a rummage sale and clothing drive in October for refugee families in Lowell. They will collect good, quality winter clothing ONLY for adults and children on Sunday, Oct. 2; donations can be brought to Plymouth Church between 10 am and 2 pm all week. On Monday, Oct. 10, during Belmont Serves, they will be processing and sorting clothing donations and volunteers are welcome. On Friday, Oct. 14, they will lay the clothes out so that the families can select what they need. Afterwards, they will host a light supper for the volunteers and families. All remaining clothing will be returned to Belmont for Plymouth’s annual rummage sale the next day, Saturday, Oct. 15. All proceeds from the rummage sale will be given to the International Institute of New England for refugee resettlement. Volunteers are needed and appreciated on Monday, Friday, and Saturday. There will also be opportunities Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday to clean, repair, or continue to process donations

    In our Belmont and Beyond group we also need help. If you are interested in helping develop a website or coordinating a Facebook Page, please let me know.

    Grant from the Unitarian Universalists Social Action Fund. $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
    Our group has been given a $5000 grant from the UUSAF and a matching grant for $7500. We are thrilled and these monies will help us have operating funds as we establish ourselves going forward. If you can help meet the matching grant, please do. This is a first dollar matching grant and funds will be collected from the UUSAF as we do our part. We do not have to reach the target $7500 before they will commit.
    Please consider contributing, any amount, to help us reach our goals. All monies raised will be applied to our Resettle Together efforts and your contributions are tax deductible.

    Make checks out to First Church Belmont and send either to First Church Belmont, 404 Concord Ave, Belmont, MA 02478. please indicate it is for the matching Resettle Together Fund on the Memo line.

    Sam James



    There will be a Benefit Concert at FCB on
    Saturday, October 1st at 7pm
    in the Parish Hall
    for Central American Families Seeking Asylum
    in Massachusetts

    with The Loomers,
    The Blood Mountain Brothers and
    The Yellow Room
    (Jon Svetkey and Heather Quay)

    Tickets will be $25 at the door;
    buy tickets in advance:

    Bev Freeman, a First Church member, and through the Needham Area Immigration Justice Task Force, is leading a project to help 86 Central American families. These are women and their children who are seeking asylum in the US, and were previously incarcerated in Texas after crossing the border. After their release from prison, these families have migrated to Massachusetts to join a family member or friend for temporary housing.

    Bev’s goal is to raise $35,000 to support a case-manager position at the Irish International Immigrant Center, which has long-established relationships with resettlement non-profit agencies and other local services The case manager would immediately extend services to this population. Donations can be made here:

    Bev is happy to hear from people who would like to help these women, especially if you are Spanish-speaking, and she seeks additional ideas and help concerning the fundraising. Donations to IIIC are welcome (see link) and she hopes to see many people at the benefit concert!

    If you missed the article in last weeks’ Belmont Citizen Herald click on the link below.

    Volunteers at the concert on Saturday are needed to :

    Serve food,
    Provide Childcare
    Sell tickets
    Help with donations.

    Please contact Bev Freeman at


    Grow Clinic!

    Beginning First Church’s 32nd YEAR of supporting the Grow Clinic at Boston Medical Center! From your shopping cart to the homes of Failure To Thrive infants and children of Boston’s poorest neighborhoods:
    September and October: Protein Power!!! (peanut butter, canned tuna or chicken, canned stews, infant strained chicken/beef/turkey).
    Collection baskets are in the Lower Hall.

    Contacts for the Social Action Committee

    Patricia Garcia – co-chair (
    Jackie Neel – co-chair (

    The Social Action Committee welcomes your participation. There are lots of events/activities planned for this year. We are a fun and energetic group. The Committee meets on the last fourth Monday of each month. Our next meeting is on Monday, Oct. 24th at 7pm in Classroom #5. We’d love to see you there!

    Get Involved!

    We can make a difference.

Posted in Opportunities for Action, Social Action Events, Volunteer