The church is located in a largely African-American neighborhood
that appreciates the church’s neat upkeep and welcoming presence. Service to the community has included 40 years of college scholarships, currently $1000 each, to Austin area high school seniors. For many years the church has been home to a daycare center, now certified for Head Start children. Since 2000, the church has joined with the neighbors in clearing and improving three properties.
One of the properties is now the TUC Community Garden, used by members and neighbors to grow produce in raised boxes. A new stone patio provides a center for church social events in the garden. Nearby, a large children’s playground serves the congregation’s children and the daycare center. The Little Leaders of Tomorrow Day Care Center housed in the Third Unitarian Church Building has joined in the gardening and going green effort with raised garden beds built especially for children’s use.
Another property on the northeast corner of Mayfield and Fulton is known as the Mayfield Community Garden. Eventually, there will be twenty raised garden beds for the Austin Community and food pantries that serve the local neighborhoods, a bee colony, and grazing goats.
In recent years, the neighborhood has seen the creation of a senior
residence building, new subsidized and market-rate housing, a new bank branch and establishment of a sixteen-block neighborhood organization, called Central Austin Neighborhood Association
(CANA). CANA meets monthly in the church, sponsors neighborhood improvement events, and joins the congregation occasionally for combined social events.