Representative: Wanda Van De Hey, Julie Gamm, & Sue O'Neill
Our congregation has always been conscious of the need for racial equity work, however,
in 2020 we began formalizing that effort. In October 2020 approximately 30 people participated in the National UCC curriculum entitled Let’s Talk White Privilege. Some members of these study groups chose to continue learning. We named ourselves the Racial Equity Group and have continued regular zoom sessions.
We have participated in countless training sessions, read many books, listened to podcasts
and webinars, and have attended many community events pertinent to racial and equity issues.
After careful consideration the Racial Equity Group decided to reach out to the Appleton School District to see if they had areas of need with which we could help. During the 2022-23 school year “Friendship Circles” was started at Dunlap School. Under the direction of Julie Bargholz, Volunteer Services Director, and Yeng Lee, Community Schools Resource Coordinator, nine adult volunteers began meeting with approximately 20 students during their lunch time to facilitate the lunch groups. These students, identified by teachers, received additional adult support
In December of 2022 we obtained blessings from the Church Council to proceed
with the necessary steps to obtain the designation of a “Just Peace Church” from the National UCC. This is a ten-step process that ultimately requires us to write a Just Peace Covenant and then bring it to the congregation for a vote. There are seven other congregations in WI who have been declared Just Peace Churches. Work is ongoing and we welcome interested persons to join us in the pursuit of a Just Peace Church.