Social Justice

Unitarian Universalist history is inseparable from social justice action, advocacy, and education. Shawnee Mission Unitarian Universalist Church makes a commitment to a wide variety of social justice activities. SMUUCh coordinates its social justice and advocacy action efforts through a representative Social Justice Council (SJC).

Until the great mass of the people shall be filled with the sense of responsibility for each other’s welfare, social justice can never be attained.
— Helen Keller

Read the Entire Social Justice Charter

Current Social Justice Council members

Adam Wathen – Chair
Darnell Hunt – Member at Large
Nancy Mays – Anti-Oppression
Marcia Rinehart – Advocacy and Witness
Yvonne Gibbons – Caring for Our Neighbors
Joan Langmack – Caring for Our Planet

SMUUCh is actively involved in these social action initiatives:

After the Harvest

Starting in May, we help After the Harvest glean farmers’ fields of excess produce and deliver it to food banks, pantries and kitchens. Gleaning usually continues through November. For more information, click here.


On the second Thursday of each month, we prepare and serve a hearty soup lunch to over 200 adults and children at Cross-Lines Community Outreach in Kansas City, Kansas. For more information, click here.


Once each month, we donate our Sunday offering to local organizations that serve the community. Our past donations have included Flowers for Tornillo and The Land Institute.

Giving Grove

The SMUUCh Giving Grove is an edible tree and shrub garden tended by SMUUCh and other community volunteers in partnership with Giving Grove and Kansas City Community Garden. Once the trees and bushes mature, the harvest will be used to help the food insecure in our local community. Volunteer opportunities for weeding, watering, pruning and general tree tending are available throughout the year. There are also opportunities to assist in other Giving Groves around Kansas City. For more information, click here.


We do various projects across the year with Harvesters, the food bank for Kansas City’s metro area. Twice a year we visit the warehouse to help sort food. At other times, we do projects at church such as packing shelf-stable lunches or folding bags for food drives. For more information, click here.

Johnson County Interfaith Hospitality Network

IHN is a nonprofit organization serving homeless families in Johnson County. Its mission is to unite and enable the faith community to provide homeless families with emergency shelter and meals, as well as compassionate assistance with social services and relationships with caring people in the faith community. Our church serves a support church, meaning that once every two to three months, we provide support to a hosting church. During our week, church volunteers provide meals for the families and stay with families nightly. For more information, click here.

Rosehill Elementary School

Join a team working with three other area churches to support Rosehill School through volunteering time and donating material resources to help bridge the gap in school funding a neighborhood school.

Salem Lutheran Food Pantry

Every Thursday, we help nearby Salem Lutheran Church distribute pantry packs to about 40 families in our community. We also collect food and donations to help keep the pantry stocked. For more information, click here.

Sunflower Head Huggers

Sunflower Head Huggers is the local satellite group of a national organization, Head Huggers, started in 2001 by a fellow UU with the mission to provide soft, warm hats for people who have lost their hair due to chemotherapy. Sunflower Head Huggers creates, collects, and distributes caps and hats through the University of Kansas Hospital and Cancer Centers. For more information, click here.