Social Action – October 2021

Afghan Refugee Resettlement Effort

Judy Nickelson offers this update on the arrival of Afghan refugees in Manhattan:

Just an update.  The first Afghani refugee family will be in Manhattan by Saturday [October 2].  They are a married couple in their late 20’s with 3 little girls, aged 5, 4 and 6 weeks old.  We have secured temporary hous-ing for them and have their immediate needs met.  

We have a critical need for free or affordable housing.  We might have a house for the family but it is not secured.  Please think about how you could help in this way.

You might also want to start gathering household items for the family and for the other refugees that will be arriving soon.  We expect 23 young women to arrive in the not too distant future.  They are former members of the Afghan National Army.  

One thing that will be a necessity in each household is a teapot and cups.  And tea.  It seems that green tea, chai and spiced blends are popular in Afghanistan.  It would be so lovely to greet each new arrival with a cup of tea.    

Thank you, my UUFM family.  You are the best!   Judy

There is a community-wide effort to help resettle the Afghan refugees coming to Manhattan.  They will need everything to set up housekeeping as they come with nothing.  If you have something to donate, or can pledge some financial help, or provide any other service, please fill out this form, at


Helping Hands

In October, Helping Hands contributions will be collected for The Crisis Center, serving victims of domestic abuse and sexual assault in Clay, Geary, Marshall, Pottawatomie, and Riley Counties.  Learn more at

As we gather Sunday mornings your contributions to our collection basket benefit the month’s Helping Hands recipient.  You can also donate online at


UUFM Sponsors a Blessing Box and a Little Free Library at Wonder Workshop

Doug Walter reports our box is in demand.  To contribute items, contact Doug at  Or, drop by Wonder Workshop, at 506 S 4th Street, and stock the box with your items.  You can also contribute financially to fill the box or the little free library at

The Blessing Box is for people to take what they need and leave what they can.  The box is stocked with non-perishable food items and life-essential items such as feminine hygiene products, toothpaste and soap.

We’re also sponsoring a Little Free Library at Wonder Workshop in memory of Richard Pitts.  To contribute books, contact Doug Walter at  You’re also welcome to stock the library directly.  Our Little Free Library focuses on books for children and youth.  UUFM’s box is registered with the international organization as box number 107632, and is on the international map of Little Free Libraries.  Learn more at

“Blessing Boxes for Manhattan/Riley County is an initiative of the Food and Farm Council of Riley Co.  BBFM is an outdoor food pantry that serves those in need 24/7.  If you need a blessing, donations are available and if you are blessed, leave a blessing.”  — from


Social Justice and Anti-Racism Resources

Check out this list of social justice/anti-racism resources at If you would like to suggest resources to add to the list, or have questions, please contact Marisa Larson at


Contact UUFM Social Action Coordinator Kathy Swenson at, to learn about all social justice efforts at the Fellowship.

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