Youth News

Youth Programs Blog

Sana Saeed, Director of Youth Programs

YG in Support of the Declaration of Conscience (4/3/2017)

We the youth group of the First Church in Belmont support this declaration of conscience released by the UUA.

At this extraordinary time in our nation’s history, we are called to affirm our profound commitment to the fundamental principles of justice, equity and compassion, to truth and core values of American society.
In the face of looming threats to immigrants, Muslims, people of color, and the LGBTQ community and the rise of hate speech, harassment and hate crimes, we affirm our belief in the inherent worth and dignity of every person.

In opposition to any steps to undermine the right of every citizen to vote or to turn back advances in access to health care and reproductive rights, we affirm our commitment to justice and compassion in human relations.
And against actions to weaken or eliminate initiatives to address the threat of climate change – actions that would threaten not only our country but the entire planet – we affirm our unyielding commitment to protect the interdependent web of all existence.

We will oppose any and all unjust government actions to deport, register, discriminate, or despoil.

As people of conscience, we declare our commitment to translate our values into action as we stand on the side of love with the most vulnerable among us.

We welcome and invite all to join in this commitment for justice.

Youth Group Statement to Invest Responsibly and Divest From Fossil Fuels (4/2/2017)

To the congregation of the First Church in Belmont Unitarian Universalist:

We the Youth Group are releasing this statement in support of the vote to invest responsibly. We know that our world and our lives will be harmed by global warming. On our service trip we also saw how climate change and mining coal are destroying the environment and communities in West Virginia. It worries us. We and our children will bear the full brunt of climate change. To stop global warming, every individual, every organization, and every government needs to do everything it can to stop burning fossil fuels. As a UU congregation whose values include the preservation of the interdependent web of life, we should be the first and the most willing to do everything we can. So we, the undersigned members of the Youth Group, call upon our congregation to divest from fossil fuels. Please do this. It’s one of the many important things we can do right now. Please don’t let fossil fuel companies use our money to extract and sell fossil fuels. Let’s stand together to put our values into action.

Youth Group Members 2017

Updated Youth Group Calendar for the Spring! (1/30/2017)

Hello everyone! Here’s an updated YG Calendar for the Spring. Please add the dates to your calendars. 

Saturday, Feb 4 – Babysitting Fundraiser for Church Auction (youth will be assigned based on who signed up during YG in the last two Sundays)

Sunday, February 5 – Bake Sale fundraisers for both services (Remember to check if you signed up on the signup list emailed a few weeks ago)

            – Youth Group Superbowl Party 6pm at Cam’s House (details emailed)

Sunday, February 12 – YAC 6:15pm, YG 7-9pm (mandatory for trip participants)

8am, Sunday, February 19 – 9pm, Sun., Feb. 26 – Service-Learning Trip

 

Sunday, March 5 – Potluck at YG member’s home

Sunday, March 12 – 12:30pm Service Trip Reflections/Presentation (Parish Hall)

–       YAC 6pm, YG 7-9pm

Sunday, March 19 –  YAC 6:15pm, YG 7-9pm

Friday, March 24 – YG Dance/Karaoke Party 7pm 

Sunday, March 26 –  YAC 6:15pm, YG 7-9pm – Plan Youth Service

 

Sunday, April 2 –  YAC 6:15pm, YG 7-9pm – Plan Youth Service

Sunday, April 9 –  YAC 6:15pm, YG 7-9pm – Plan Youth Service

Sunday, April 16 No YG (Easter/ School Vacation Week)

Sunday, April 23 –  YAC 6:15pm, YG 7-9pm – Plan Youth Service

Saturday, April 29 – Youth Service Rehearsal 4-6pm, Youth & Families Potluck 6-8:30pm

Sunday, April 30 – Youth Service 9am and 11am

 

Friday, May 5 – YG Bridging & Overnight, YAC 7:30pm, YG 8:30pm

Sunday, May 14 – Attend COA Ceremony 9am or 11am (Mother’s Day)

Saturday, May 20 (11am) – Sunday, May 21 (12pm)  – Grade 9 & 10 Retreat (Camp Nihan)

Sunday, May 28 – No YG Memorial Day Weekend

 

Sunday, June 4 – (Graduation weekend)

Sunday, June 11 – Flower Communion 11am & Picnic

 

Acronyms:

YAC (Youth Advisory Committee) 

YG (Youth Group)

COA (Coming of Age)

YG Service Trip to West Virginia Slide Show (1/30/2017)

YG hosted a multi-generational event on West Virginia in partnership with the Adults Program Committee and Social Action Committee. We had a great turn out to hear our three speakers from West Virginia who responded deeply to questions during a panel discussion moderated by Al Hughes, a YG member. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to show the powerpoint that another YG member, Rachel Iler-Keniston put together, but here is the slideshow online! It’s great overview of what we’ll be doing during our service trip. Thanks to everyone who made it out! 

 

The Second Friday Coffee House Hosted by Youth Group (12/13/2016)

coffeehouseopenmic

 

Join the youth group members for a fun night of skits, music, and other great acts!

When: Friday, January 6th at 7:30pm

Where: Parish Hall

Our featured beneficiary is YouthBuild! In the United States, YouthBuild programs give low-income young people who have fallen off the edges of society the opportunity to transform their own lives, get back on track to adult responsibility, and give back to their communities. Founded by FCB member Dorothy Stoneman.


Feel free to come early to sign up to perform too….we’d love to have you!

ATTN: A Call for Service-Learning Trip Chaperones (12/13/2016)

wvirginiamap2Interested in a free trip to West Virginia? Join the Youth Group on a fun Service-learning trip to Appalachia in West Virginia from February 19th – February 26th. We’ll be helping repair homes, visiting a mountain-top removal site, meeting local activists, jamming out with a folklife music workshop, having campfires and much, much more. We need more chaperones on the trip as we have a lot of eager youth signing up for our trip – and you don’t have to pay as a volunteer chaperone. If you’re interested send Sana an email at ssaeed@uubelmont.org.

Youth Group Fall Fundraisers (10/8/2016)

Leaf Raking & ODD JOBS

 Do you want help:odd-jobs

Cleaning? Moving heavy items?leafraking

Using your iphone/ipad? Navigating facebook?

With music lessons? Preparing and freezing meals?

Something else?

Sign up by November 1st.  Work will be scheduled throughout November.

Click here to Sign Up

Proceeds from this fundraiser go toward the Youth Group’s biennial Service-Learning Trip. Ask the youth about their experiences on the Navajo Nation and other locations in the last few years!

If you have any questions please email Sana Saeed, Director of Youth Programs at ssaeed@uubelmont.org.

Youth Programs October 2016 Update (10/2/2016)

Hello Everyone,

I am energized for the new church year. We have decided on our service trip, we’re headed to Appalachia in West Virginia! This year, I’d like to prioritize local community service, making reflection and action integral parts of our spiritual experience on a regular basis.  We will start by participating in Belmont Serves happening on Monday, October 10th by helping staple bags for the program to deliver to homes beforehand. The bags will be used for door-to-door collection for the Belmont Food Pantry— Teams of volunteers will be assigned to specific routes, collecting bags of groceries left at doorsteps for delivery to the Belmont Food Pantry. These grocery bags are distributed door-to-door throughout the town during the week before Belmont Serves day. Last year, Belmont Serves filled the food pantry with over 1,800 bags of groceries. This year they hope to do even better! This is a family-friendly event, where all members of the Belmont community are invited to work together for one morning.  The Belmont Religious Council is organizing this day of interfaith community service. Please visit http://www.belmontrc.org/service.html to sign-up the whole family.

This year we will also spend some time fundraising in anticipation for our Service Trip in February of 2017.  I’d like to form a small fundraising committee that would help plan and facilitate our service trip fundraisers.  Please be in touch as soon as possible if you’re able to help with this effort.

Again, I am thrilled to be a part of the First Church community and working with youth programs here.  Please feel free to be in touch anytime.  See you all soon!

Warm regards,

Sana

ssaeed@uubelmont.org

Youth Group and Coming of Age Update (9/22/2016)

Youth Group and Coming of Age have officially began! If you’re in grades 10th – 12th and interested in attending youth group join us on Sunday’s at 7:00pm! 

Also, for 9th graders Coming of Age will be meeting from 2:00-3:30pm until November 20th when the musical ends and then will begin meeting at 4:00 – 5:30pm. 

We have an exciting year ahead. Keep an eye on the youth and RE Halloween Party on Saturday, October 22nd and fundraisers for our upcoming service trip in February (we’re going to West Virginia, woooo)! 🙂

Questions? Ask Sana at ssaeed@uubelmont.org

Hello From Sana! (9/22/2016)

I’m excited to be incoming as the Director of Youth Programs at First Church in Belmont. It’s been exciting to roll out the youth programs and an ongoing learning process. A bit about me, when I’m not at FCB, I’m pursuing a Master of Divinity at Harvard Divinity School. I was born in Manchester, England and moved to the USA when she was sixteen. I hold dual citizenships and was lucky enough to grow up in a Pakistani home with the fortune of learning Urdu, Punjabi, as well as, English. My upbringing inspired my love for traveling. So far I’ve traveled to twenty-seven countries! I also have a Masters degree in Conflict Analysis and Resolution from George Mason University and a Masters in Peace Studies from the International Christian University in Tokyo, Japan.

I became interested in Unitarian Universalism, after being hired as a Director of Youth Ministry (DYM) in 2009 for the UU Church of Arlington (UUCA), where I was frequently asked the question, “What is a Muslim doing working in a church?”. Everything I have engaged in so far has all been driven by my keen interest in youth ministry and religious education. As a DYM for the UUCA, I was able to infuse my passions by organizing religious education programing, such as an annual Hunger Banquet and an anti-racism CON, which included an overnight component for youth. I am a certified OWL facilitator and also has experience teaching Coming of Age. While at UUCA I co-led an international youth service trip to El Salvador with the River Road UU’s, and locally with UUCA to New York, Arizona and Louisiana to work on immigrant rights, racial justice and healing, and disaster relief. Furthermore, I was hired by the UUA to be a contributing author to, Be the Change!, an anti-racism curriculum for high-school youth that is used nationally by congregations as a starting point for conversations on diversity issues for high-school youth. I have also served on the Youth Ministry Advisory Committee of the UUA from 2012-2014 and on the UUA’s GA Program Development committee for 2016.

My hobbies include salsa dancing and I am a caffeine addict (for all those hours of paper writing and staying up during overnights)!

I’m excited to begin this journey with youth at First Church in Belmont and also to get to know everyone more. I hope to collaborate with the amazing programs and lay leaders in the upcoming years. If you have any ideas for programming or want to learn more about youth programs at FCB please send me an email at ssaeed@uubelmont.org. 🙂