The Social Justice Unit of the Uniting Church WA recently launched its Social Justice Action Groups (SJAG), to provide support to those thinking of advocating social justice issues and don’t know where to start.
“Social Justice is such a core part of the identity of the Uniting Church,” said Geoff Bice, Social Justice Consultant for the Uniting Church WA. “Setting up a Social Justice Action Group in your community is a key way of co-ordinating and localising action. I think it also demonstrates our dedicated love for others, through social justice, as a fundamental expression of the gospel.”
The Social Justice Unit can assist groups to put their plan into action whether it is to run an event, start a letter writing campaign or volunteer with a local service provider. A SJAG can be based in a congregation, a region or with a bunch of friends. It’s a great way to connect with like-minded individuals who aspire to make a difference in social justice.
“It’s up to each group to decide the venue and particular issues they wish to focus on, but it’s also meant to be accessible for people beyond the church. It can be a great way to connect with others in your networks who have a heart for seeing people treated fairly and then combining our voice for change,” said Geoff.
The Social Justice Unit, together with its Social Justice Commission, works largely on refugee policy, climate change and justice for First Peoples.
“We want to make sure people are connected and involved in those campaigns. Sometimes, I think people underestimate how powerful their voice can be, especially if it is voiced in unison with others,” said Geoff. “We know many people across the Uniting Church are already very engaged in local efforts to provide relief and community supports. It’s important that a SJAG has that local practical component, but it’s also important that we address the underlying injustices. A SJAG is a simple and hopefully fun way to be part of a community that is addressing both the symptoms and the causes that lead to things like poverty, homelessness or incarceration.”
To find out more about starting a SJAG with the Uniting Church WA contact Kate Leaney, Social Justice Action Group Co-ordinator at 9260 9800 or email@example.com.
Visit unitingchurchwa.org.au/unitingchurch-centre/social-justice-unit to learn more about the Social Justice Unit.