Audrey B. Seale Service Program

Introduction

The Audrey B. Seale Service program was established in 2006 by a generous gift from Audrey B. Seale to the Allen Avenue Unitarian Universalist Church in Portland, Maine. The purpose of the program is to enable individuals ages 17 to 25 who have been active participants in a Senior Youth Group of a Unitarian Universalist church in Maine, with preference given to those who have been active participants in the Senior Youth Group of the Allen Avenue Church, to perform a significant period of community service, up to one year in duration.

Who may apply

Applicants must be at least 17 years of age and no more than 24 years of age at the time of application. In addition, they must have been active participants in a senior youth group of a Unitarian Universalist church in Maine and be able to provide documentation of their activity from the Religious Education Director, Senior Youth Advisor, or other appropriate official of the church where the activity occurred.

Project guidelines

Proposals for ABS service projects may be in the areas of environment improvement, community development, social justice, social service, or other areas that are consistent with and further the intents of the seven Unitarian Universalist Principles. Applicants should plan to devote a significant percentage of their time daily to their projects during the period that the project takes place. Grant funds may be used for living expenses during the project period, transportation to and from the project site, materials needed to carry out the project, or other expenses directly related to realization of the project. A maximum of $6,000 will be available in each grant cycle.

Project resources

The following are programs or listings of volunteer opportunities that may give applicants ideas for service projects. This is intended as a starting point and not an exhaustive list.

American Friends Service Committee: www.afsc.org/volunteering/

A listing of volunteer programs sponsored by or affiliated with the American Friends Service Committee

Habitat for Humanity:  http://www.habitat.org/

“Habitat for Humanity International is a nonprofit, ecumenical Christian housing ministry. HFHI seeks to eliminate poverty housing and homelessness from the world, and to make decent shelter a matter of conscience and action. Habitat invites people of all backgrounds, races and religions to build houses together in partnership with families in need.”

Quaker Information Center www.quakerinfo.org/service/othersites.html

A listing compiled by the Quaker Information Center of web sites offering information about or access to volunteer opportunities.

Safe Passage:   http://www.safepassage.org/

“Safe Passage works with the poorest at-risk children of families working in the Guatemala City garbage dump. Within a safe and caring environment, we provide a comprehensive and integrated program that fosters hope, good health, educational achievement, self-sufficiency, self esteem and confidence. Our primary focus is on creating opportunities and dignity through the power of education.”

UUSC JustWorks Camps www.uusc.org/info/workcamps.html

“JustWorks camps are short-term projects that help volunteers examine and understand the causes and damaging effects of injustice. Participants work directly with people in the communities they serve, experiencing social justice struggles firsthand.”

VolunteerMaine www.volunteersolutions.org/uwgp/volunteer/

“The VolunteerMaine Partnership is an expanding partnership that capitalizes on the unique capacities, energies, and talents of the partners. Our goal is to establish a consistent statewide system that easily links . . . citizens with volunteer opportunities . . .”

Application and selection

Process

The Allen Avenue Unitarian Church will announce through its web site and by contact with Unitarian Universalist churches throughout Maine and with the media that it is accepting applications for the ABS and set a deadline for submission. Within a week of the application deadline, the ABS Committee of the Allen Avenue Church will review the applications and select applicants to interview. The Committee will present finalists to the Allen Avenue Board of Trustees for their approval and grantees will be notified of their selection.

Criteria for selection

Applicants must document a commitment to service through their volunteer records and their activities in their churches. Proposed service programs should be based on thoughtful and thorough planning and a realistic budget. Finally, each applicant’s presentation in the interview will carry considerable weight.

Project reporting

Each grantee must submit a final project report to the Allen Avenue Church at the end of the project period. Interim reports may also be required, especially in the case of longer projects.

Publicity

Availability of grants will be announced to Unitarian Universalist churches in Maine and through the media. Notice of grant awards and final project reports will be made available to the media and to Unitarian Universalist churches in Maine.

Application and Featured Recipents

The Audrey B. Seale Committee is accepting applications for service project grants. Grants of up to $6000 are available for any individual, age 17-24, who has been an active participant in a senior youth group of a Maine Unitarian Universalist Church. Preference will be given to members of Allen Avenue UU Church. Applications are accepted twice a year; deadlines are October 1st and April 1st.

Please click here for an application.

The 2008 Recipient of the Audrey B. Seale Service Program was Becca Hamilton. Please click here to read a description of her project along with photos!

Becca Hamilton and friend