CommUNITY Allies

Coming Together While Apart
A Vacation Bible School experience for the whole family

Our unique VBS Curriculum grows out of a deep desire to more fully walk in the values of love and connection. Building off previous VBS work in anti-racism, inclusion and social justice, CommUNITY Allies uses arts and crafts, movement challenges, music and more to celebrate and inspire families of faith to join together—even as we are all apart. Join us to learn about empathy, community activism, and our global connections from the safety of your home.

 

Join the revolution of love!

CommUNITY Allies should take about an hour a day to complete as a family. Our kit contains Bible verse coloring pages, activity plans and worksheets, stories, step-by-step craft instructions, and lots of flexibility for customizing the activities for your learners and your home. Virtual interactive participation in our online forums is another way to stay connected and share your VBS creations.

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Sign Up Here!

Whether you're one family, or an entire community, all are welcome to join the journey! Edmonds UMC will be joining this adventure July 13-17 2020, but you can partake in this journey any time. There are 5 days of content. Use it daily for a week or in any other timeline.

 CONTENT WILL BE AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD ON JULY 6.

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Register a Church or Group

Participate when you want

$120

Register One Family

July 13 -17
Or participate when you want

$10

Supply List Provided. No in-person pick up

 

Who We Are

We are an interdisciplinary team who committed to learn and grow together. Jennifer McLaughlin envisioned an anti-racism VBS as a way to maximize the biggest community gathering opportunity of the Church year for facilitating a revolution of love. Key to success of this VBS was finding an equity consultant willing to teach, and an interdisciplinary team of volunteers ready to learn. Together we have created a transformative experience.

 

History

Listen to the Podcast describing the history behind our revolution of love!

Inspired by increasing awareness of structural racism and learning at the 2017 Faith Forward Conference, Jennifer McLaughlin envisioned a community experience that would engage children, youth, and adults in conversations about racism. 

Author Brian McLaren spoke at the conference about how to prepare children for life in dangerous times. Among his guidance were two goals that drove my vision for this VBS. “1. Help children identify as participants in a never-ending spiritual revolution/evolution of love. 2. Equip children as lifelong Christian activists for these dangerous times."


At our 2017 VBS, we welcomed guest speakers Dr. Onnie Rogers and Courtney Wooten to join us in a conversation about race.


We then began to prepare for a 2018 curriculum focused on racism. An interdisciplinary team of volunteers agreed to learn more and work with an equity consultant to write a curriculum for VBS. In 2018, we led a VBS entitled The Power of Inclusion. The curriculum was targeted at our mostly white, middle-class community, inviting them into awareness about race and responsibility. We defined racism, discovered beauty in diversity, and explored privilege and resources (playing games that teach us that some start further ahead in life and others start further behind). 

 

FAQ's

1. What age range is this curriculum for? This material is designed for Kindergarten-sixth grade. We hope this is a community or family engagement opportunity and it does require a relative, friend, or teacher to help guide the activities. We've simplified the curriculum for preschoolers in past years with success and our 7th-12th grade volunteers learn a lot from this content as well. The biggest secret is that our adult volunteers learn a great deal as well. 

2. Does this curriculum have to be offered in 5 consecutive days? You can use this curriculum daily or weekly. It can be used for Vacation Bible School, Sunday School, school, small group content, or other applications you envision. 

3. What is an anti-racism curriculum? Children are extremely tuned in to the concept of fairness. When we talk about racism, we can identify ways unfairness is a part of our everyday lives. Once we can see injustice, we can begin to work towards change. Ibram Kendi describes anti-racism this way, "“I define an antiracist as someone who is expressing an antiracist idea or supporting an antiracist policy with their actions,” Kendi said. “And I define an antiracist idea as any idea that says the racial groups are equal.” In How to Be An Antiracist, Kendi writes: "To be antiracist is to think nothing is behaviorally wrong or right -- inferior or superior -- with any of the racial groups. Whenever the antiracist sees individuals behaving positively or negatively, the antiracist sees exactly that: individuals behaving positively or negatively, not representatives of whole races. To be antiracist is to deracialize behavior, to remove the tattooed stereotype from every racialized body. Behavior is something humans do, not races do."

4. Can I get a sample? Yes, you can download a sample from the website. If you need more samples, please email info@communityalliesvbs.com.

5. How long will the curriculum be available? The content will be available beginning July 6.  Access to the content will remain open through 2020.

6. Will there be zooms included? We will offer videos of teachers presenting content, interactive opportunities, service projects. While music is not included in the purchased curriculum, we will have some music with movements you can freely use. 

 

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