Guidelines for 2016 Our Faith Our Vote Grants
The United Church of Christ has historic roots in the practice of engaging the public sphere and the political dialogue with new ideas, prophetic witness and bold strategies for justice. The UCC Our Faith Our Vote project is rooted in this history.
Interested in taking your OFOV witness to the next level? This year we are making five OFOV grants available in the amount of $2,000 for local organizing efforts to register voters, provide issue education and to encourage voters to go to the polls in November. These efforts should be strictly nonpartisan and focus on key issues of concern in your community.
OFOV uses a three-tiered approach of voter registration, issues education and mobilizing for voter participation. Applications for the UCC 2016 Our Faith Our Vote small grants should focus on one or more of the following areas:
- Voter Registration
Example: Organizing voter registration events in the community - particularly outreach to marginalized communities; organizing/supporting college campus voter registration work.
- Issue Education
Example: Hosting community-wide issue forums and candidate forums where people can share stories, learn more about key issues and ask questions of candidates and issue representatives/stakeholders.
- Voter Empowerment and Mobilization
Example: Organize nonpartisan get-out-the-vote activities for your congregation and community; help voters get to the polls; ensure that members of you congregation know how to find their voting place, know their rights, and know how to contact Election Protection resources if their rights are being denied
It is appropriate and necessary for local congregations and church bodies to develop nonpartisan voter education and empowerment programs that promote responsible, thoughtful civic engagement and help people of faith reflect upon the political order for the common good.
All UCC 2016 Our Faith Our Vote small grants organizing and community engagement must be strictly nonpartisan. All information distributed and activities must be offered to all regardless of political affiliation, and no party preference should be stated. Content can and should focus on key issues of concern to the community. Nonpartisan engagement can include information on/dialogue about ballot initiatives, focusing on the issue content of the initiatives.