Green Sanctuary Designation Approved for UCN!
After four years of hard and sustained work, UCN was granted formal Green Sanctuary accreditation on Friday, February 27, 2015. This is a big step for UCN and one that represents both goals achieved as well as a designation we as a church must now live up to. By accepting this designation, we affirm our commitment to, respect for, and action to protect, honor, and restore the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part. We also commit to continue questioning our actions, purchases, and thinking as it relates to best honoring our Seventh Principle. I join you in taking deserved pride in this designation. Because many of you may not have been members of UCN four years ago, I urge you to find out more about UCN's Green Committee that seeks to foster living sustainably, simply, and more lightly on Earth both at UCN and within our member households. You may have much to share in this regard, or you may have questions. You may want to consider joining our committee or you may want to simply have a conversation. We welcome all of that and encourage you to contact a committee member – John Hoff, Jenny Elsner-Miller, Dean Johnson, Lucy Friedrichs, or Brian Monroe. To read the UUA's acceptance letter and UCN's comprehensive application for Green Sanctuary accreditation, visit the links below.
UCN's Green Sanctuary Application: /sites/default/files/sites/default/files/pdfs/Green Sanctuary Accreditation Application Document - Final.pdf
UCN's Green Sanctuary Accreditation Letter: /sites/default/files/sites/default/files/pdfs/Green Sanctuary Acceptance Letter.pdf
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Do it all by taking your gently used clothing and household goods to Family Sharing, located at 1002 Overland Court, Grafton (262-377-0634). Your donations raise money to stock the food pantry for those in need. While there, shop the Family Sharing Resale Store and search out some recycled bargains!
Unitarian Church North seeks to heal and preserve the natural environment for our and future generations of all living things by increasing the sustainability and minimizing the negative ecological impact of UCN, our members, and our communities.
The Green Committee meets every fourth Wednesday of the month (unless otherwise noted in the email announcements) at 7:00 p.m. in the James Reeb room. ALL are welcome to join us!
As a relatively new committee, the Green Committee grew out of a Barn Banter held in the spring of 2007. Coordinated by then Minister Elena Rigg, this meeting drew thirty-six people and demonstrated the desire for involvment in environmental issues both within our congregation and beyond. The Barn Banter brainstorming session generated many ideas and much enthusiasm. This general meeting was followed-up with summer meetings where a vision and mission were created. On September 10, 2007 the UCN Board approved the Green Committee as a standing committee.
Since that time, the Green Committee has been busy! Below are a few things that the committee has either completed or working on at present.
- Vegetable garden
- Built a compost bin, held workshop on how to build one
- Installed mug rack in the fellowship hall and encourage the use of non-disposable cups during coffee time
- Worked with Sunday Service Committee on reducing the numbers of Orders of Service printed each Sunday
- Established an ongoing monthly column in the Northliner, called “Green Corner,” covering a wide variety of “green” topics
- Posted signs to encourage wise water use in all bathrooms and in the kitchen
- Encourage the use of real dishes at church fellowship functions
- Coordinated an interactive carbon footprint workshop
- Hosted a local food talk by local Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farmers
- Coordinated a silent auction of a CSA share with the proceeds going to the UCN general operating budget
- Conducted a walk-through energy audit of the church
- Coordinated three Walk, Bike, Carpool to Church Day events
- Offered multiple Northwest Earth Institute courses, including Voluntary Simplicity and Choices for Sustainable Living
- Offered "An Amazing Journey!: The Universe & Me" adult education course
- Coordinated recycling efforts at UCN
- Increased UCN's green library
- Hosted three community electronic recycling events keepin 28+ tons of electronics out of landfills
- Hosted Sid Syam’s presentation on Spirituality and Nature Future
- Hosted an area-wide Mindfulness retreat
- Promoted the replacement of UCN boilers to cost-saving and energy efficient models
- Hosted an eight-week "Green Living" discussion and action program
- Established a seed-gathering and sharing program with Hawley Enviromental School
- Establised a Friday Flyer feature entitles "Toward a Sustainable Future" to provide facts and food for thought
Currently the Green Committee is focused on obtaining the Unitarian Universalist Association’s “Green Sanctuary” designation. This process will integrate “green” thinking into all aspects of the church community. This is a very ambitious and exciting project for our congregation. Stay tuned….there will be much more to come!
Learn more about the UUA Green Sanctuary Program on the UUA's website. And don’t hesitate to contact anyone on the Green Committee for more information.
Previous Green Committee Articles:
Where Recycling Goes - Feb. 2013
Kill-a-Watt or More! - March 2013
2013 Earth Day Activities - April 2013
Green Sanctuary FOOD Project - May & June 2013
2013 Electronics Recycling Event - Summer 2013
3rd Annual Electronic Recycling Event - October 2013
Equal Exchange Fair Trade Products for Sale at UCN - Nov.-Dec. 2013.pdf
Cleaning Products - January 2014.pdf
/sites/default/files/sites/default/files/pdfs/Microbead Great Lakes Contamination - February 2014.pdf
/sites/default/files/sites/default/files/pdfs/The Great American Clean-Up 4-26-14.pdf
/sites/default/files/sites/default/files/pdfs/Unitarian North Church Donation Drive 6-7-14.pdf
/sites/default/files/sites/default/files/Electronics Recycling Event Flyer 9-6-2014.pdf
/sites/default/files/sites/default/files/pdfs/Green Committee Online Survey June 2014.pdf
/sites/default/files/sites/default/files/Fourth Annual Recycling Event - Sept. 2014.pdf
/sites/default/files/sites/default/files/pdfs/Real Vs. Artificial Christmas Tree 2.pdf