On Friday morning, all conference attendees will immerse themselves in a morning of service, education and advocacy in the Ogden area focusing on our missional theme of safety, homelessness, and justice. The immersion project will begin with a brief worship and commissioning for the day before dividing up into smaller groups to serve and learn together. Some projects will take place at the convention center and others will be at locations throughout Ogden with transportation provided. Hands-on immersion projects will include options for people of various skillsets and physical abilities. Lunch is included with the immersion project. Individuals will sign up for the immersion project of their choice through the conference registration.
Crossroads Urban Center: Education and advocacy in our local communities
Learn how you can engage your local community in education and advocacy related to housing, safety and justice. Crossroads Urban Center is a nonprofit, grassroots organization that assists and organizes Utahns with low incomes, those with disabilities, and people of color to meet basic survival needs and to address essential issues affecting quality of life. Established in 1966, Crossroads is a multi-faith, community-based project that is in a covenant relationship with the United Methodist Women national office.
In this Immersion Project, you will learn about Crossroads Urban Center’s work, focusing on our theme of housing, safety, and justice. Interactive information will be shared about family homelessness and discussions of how that might look in the various large and small communities of the Mountain Sky Area. You will learn how you can continue this education and advocacy in your own local community.
Low physical impact. Capacity: 80
Family Promise: Transforming the Lives of Homeless Families
Learn how to host the homeless in your community, one week at a time. The mission of Family Promise is to help homeless and low income families achieve sustainable independence through a community-based response.
Your husband left and cleaned out the savings. You have no one to help with childcare for your three children, so how do you get a job? Where do you go when you get evicted from the apartment? You've slept on friends’ couches, but you can't stay forever. Family Promise gives you other options besides a shelter. You will be provided the resources to get help, seek employment, look for housing, and apply for childcare that you didn't even know existed. This will be a very informative and interactive workshop to give you the resources to help in YOUR community. You will tour and hear from a Family Promise host church. We are the hands and feet of Christ, if not us .......WHO?
Very low physical impact. Capacity: 50
American Red Cross and Ogden Fire Department: Sound the Alarm – Installing Smoke Detectors
Volunteer with the American Red Cross and the Ogden Fire Department to install smoke detectors in the homes of the disabled and low-income people in the neighborhoods right around the Eccles Conference Center. We will begin the morning at Eccles with some education and training, and then we'll send out volunteers in teams to make the installations at prearranged homes. Tools and transportation will be provided by Red Cross. Each team will need a person capable of climbing a short ladder and using an electric drill/screwdriver. Each team will also need persons to assist with the ladder and tools, fill out paperwork, and converse with the homeowners (Spanish language will be helpful for some houses).
Moderate physical impact. Capacity: 300
Westwood Village: Serving Seniors and Elderly in Ogden
Westwood Village is a 55-plus retirement mobile home community. Many of the residents are not able to do basic yard work and chores. Immersion ministry volunteers will help with projects such as weeding, mowing, shoveling, organizing, cleaning, wood work, painting, etc. You will work in teams of 2-4 people, lending a helping hand and lifting up a needy neighbor. Come in your work clothes, and bring gloves. Everything else is provided.
Medium to high physical impact. Capacity: 100
UMCOR West Depot: Sorting Donated Supplies and Packing Relief Kits
United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) West Depot is a 22,000 square foot warehouse located in Salt Lake City, Utah. On a weekly basis, volunteers from across the country build, package and shelve relief supply kits that are sent to aid vulnerable populations in the process of recovery from natural disasters as well as from systemic poverty. UMCOR West now focuses on three distinct relief supply kits: hygiene kits, school kits, and cleaning buckets. Contents of these kits can be viewed at umcor.org/UMCOR/Relief-Supplies. UMCOR Immersion Project participants will process all of the conference donations to UMCOR West at the Eccles Conference Center in Ogden. UMCOR West will have additional supplies on-site for volunteers to build relief supplies kits from scratch. While logistics will not allow a trip to Salt Lake City to experience life at UMCOR West, UMCOR West is happy to bring our mission experience to Ogden!
Medium physical impact. Capacity: 100
Intermountain Children’s Home: How Local Congregations can Faithfully Respond to Children’s Mental Health
Intermountain, a United Methodist-founded and expert in children's mental health organization, offers a workshop that will provide numerous trauma-informed ministry resources. Children and their families are continually impacted by challenging events that we hear about regularly in the news. In this hands-on interactive workshop, participants will learn about the work and history of Intermountain as a children's mental health organization. Participants will create packets that contain curriculum, resources, and props that allow for mental health or trauma-informed programming in a local congregation. Participants will also assist in the creation of materials that Intermountain staff will take back to the children for use in the therapeutic summer programs.
Low physical impact. Capacity: 80
Community Shelters and Housing Organizations
Ogden has several organizations offering shelter for people with different types of need. Small groups of volunteers will visit an organization that might offer shelter, food, or other critical services and to women, families, teens, or elderly seniors. At each of the sites participants will learn about the community needs and how the organization focuses on addressing them to rebuild lives and break cycles of poverty and homelessness. There will be time for interaction and discussion of how this impacts communities and what you can do to partner with others in your local setting. Hands-on volunteer opportunities will vary by site, but could include sorting donations, cleaning, food prep or serving.
Low to medium physical impact. Capacity: 200