And now, may we have faith in life to do wise planning that the generations to come may reap even more abundantly than we. May we be bold in bringing to fruition the golden dreams of human kinship and justice. This we ask that the fields of promise become fields of reality. —V. Emil Gudmundson
A culture of generosity is born within a network of relationships, in which each person feels that they belong. Our Unitarian Universalist approach to financial stability grows out of our celebration of belonging.
Many people find it difficult to talk about money and funding, feeling that such topics are somehow inappropriate in congregational life. Yet our congregations need money to do their good work. Experience teaches us that it’s important to talk about our finances in ways that link them to our values and aspirations. If your congregation is ready to do the work of creating a culture of generosity, we look forward to supporting you.
Resources for Financial Sustainability
- The CUC Congregational Life Team is able to provide
- workshops on funding strategies
- links to materials and resource people
- connections with Canadian UUs via the CUC Leaders email group
- Building Blocks for Financial Stability lists many useful materials for you to explore! Topics include
- philosophy of a lifestyle of giving
- annual program drives
- capital campaigns
- facility user fees
- shared spaces
- endowments and bequests
- An assessment tool developed by Daniel Hotchkiss of the Alban Institute to help you gain insight into your congregation’s current status and practice.
Grants available for Canadian congregations
Sharing Our Faith
The Sharing Our Faith program grants funds for congregational initiatives which enhance ministry, aid congregational projects and outreach, and enhance the Unitarian Universalist movement in Canada. All congregations are encouraged to hold an annual Sharing Our Faith worship service focused on the UU faith in Canada, with a special collection for the Sharing Our Faith fund. Monies are also provided by the Foundation Fund, administered by the First Unitarian Congregation of Toronto.
Grant applications are due by March 31 of each year. Completed applications should be submitted by email. Please note that Sharing Our Faith grants are normally under $5,000. Contact the Sharing Our Faith team with any questions!
Unitarian Universalist communities of any description—established congregations, emerging congregations, and other types of UU communities—may apply for a Northern Lights grant. These grants are intended to fund grassroots, transformative initiatives that nurture and promote Unitarian Universalism in Canada. Any project that meets this description will be considered; the possibilities are very wide! Funds for these grants come from donations made by individual committed UUs in Canada and beyond.
Grant applications are due by March 31 of each year. Completed applications should be submitted by email. Contact the Northern Lights team with any questions!
The West Trust
The West Trust was founded through a bequest made to the UU Church of Halifax in 1887 by William West to promote the principles of Universalism in Canada. Modern Unitarian Universalism inherits, honours, and embodies those principles, and the West Trust continues to support them in a variety of ways. Grants have funded website work, enabled creative advertising, supplemented the salaries of religious professionals, and more.
The West Trust grant application form and full information are available as a Word document.
Grant applications are due by September 30 of each year. Applications sent by postal mail rather than email are due by September 20, and a late application may be considered at the discretion of the trustees. Note that grants in recent years have been in the range of $100 to $3,500 and have averaged about $1,000.