Neighbors in Need
Neighbors in Need (NIN) is a special mission offering of the UCC that supports ministries of justice and compassion throughout the United States and Puerto Rico.
Justice and Witness Ministry Grants
Two-thirds of Neighbors in Need supports program initiatives and direct grants offered by the UCC's Justice and Witness Ministries. Small but essential grants are made throughout the year to congregations and organizations so that funds are directly supporting grassroots advocacy and outreach efforts. Although grants are made to address a wide range of justice priorities, a significant portion of these grants are made to address issues of hunger and poverty.
Grant applications are reviewed regularly by ministry teams and decisions are made in keeping with funding guidelines and the availability of funds. Most grants are small and non-repeating but are allocated to congregations and organizations where the larger UCC's solidarity can be used to enhance and strengthen the project's overall effectiveness. All applications must include the endorsement of the UCC conference minister.
Although the number and amount of requests far exceed the amount of dollars available, allocated funds are used to plant seeds in congregations and organizations for programs that creatively address systemic issues of injustice on the local, regional, national, or international level. Careful attention is given to make sure that every Neighbors in Need grant recipient reflects the UCC's vision of being a church of Jesus Christ that is multi-racial, multi-cultural, open and affirming, and accessible to all.
Council for American Indian Ministry
One-third of Neighbors in Need supports the work of the UCC's Council for American Indian Ministry (CAIM), which is the voice for American Indians in the United Church of Christ. CAIM supports the work of local churches and their pastors; encourages youth and young adults; supports persons preparing for Christian ministry; empowers American Indians who are members of non-Indian congregations; and advocates for justice on issues affecting American Indian Life.
Historically the forebears of the UCC established churches with the Lakota, Dakota, Nakota, Mandan, Hidatsa, Arickara, Ho-Cak in North and South Dakota, Wisconsin, and Northern Nebraska. Today there are 19 UCC congregations on reservations and one urban inter-tribal congregation in Minneapolis. In addition, there are more than 1,000 individuals from dozens of other tribes and nations scattered in nearly every conference in the UCC.
Click here for information about Neighbors in Need on the National United Church of Christ website..
Click here to read stories about how NIN grants change lives.
Click here to learn about Neigbors in Need Grants awarded in the Spring of 2012.
Click here to read about UCC Justice and Witness Ministries.
Isaiah 58: 6-10: "Is not this the fast that I choose: to loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo the thongs of the yoke, to let the oppressed go free, and to break every yoke? 7 Is it not to share your bread with the hungry, and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover him, and not to hide yourself from your own flesh? 8 Then shall your light break forth like the dawn, and your healing shall spring up speedily; your righteousness shall go before you, the glory of the LORD shall be your rear guard. 10 if you pour yourself out for the hungry and satisfy the desire of the afflicted, then shall your light rise in the darkness and your gloom be as the noonday.