Beyond Belief Network Roundup and Recognitions!

We just finished rounding up reports from our volunteer teams for the month of April! Humanists and other compassionate people in our network held 31 events — 711 volunteer hours total!

 

Recognitions

First off: welcome back Atheists of Florida! This Tampa Bay area team jumped back into the game during Secular Week of Action after a hiatus. Three years ago, they collected a donation of 1,000 pairs of socks, but were hindered by the pandemic from distributing them all effectively. For Week of Action, they gave about 60 pairs to a university project providing free health services to people living unsheltered!

Another welcome back — plus a congratulations — goes to Team of the Month Central New York Humanist Association! After having not heard from them for a while, CNY Humanists reactivated their membership in the network for an Earth Day creek cleanup event. About 22 folks met to pick over 30 bags of garbage from a trail in Syracuse! They even had some new faces who hadn’t heard of the group, but were just looking for an Earth Day event to attend. They gave out t-shirts to everyone so that they could all look and feel like a team!

Picture of the Month comes from a Central Florida Freethought Community (CFFC) event where the team partnered with the city of Orlando for its Earth Day celebration! CFFC planted scrub pines, coonties, and muhly grass. They finished all that the city had planned and then some! The city actually had to go get more plants because CFFC used up everything the city thought they would need! Wonderful work, CFFC.

An Atheists of Florida volunteer planting during GreenUp Orlando on Earth Day.

 

Center for Inquiry-Michigan

This vaccinated team shed their masks and put on their work gloves for their Long Lake Workday. Each year, CFI Michigan donates time and energy to the maintenance and improvement of a historic outdoor center (site of their Secular Summer Retreat). Projects included corralling and chipping branches from the trails; removing leaves from buildings, parking lot, and lodge area; inspecting buildings for maintenance issues; and removing debris from cabin rooftops. This group moved a lot of leaves and chipped a large supply of wood. Aside from the wind, CFI Michigan reported a wonderful day.

 

Kol Hadash Humanistic Congregation

Kol Hadash collected food, diapers, and other necessities for YouthBuild Lake County, which advocates to expand opportunities for low-income and at-risk youth. The team also collected homemade goods for Operation Gratitude.

 

Central Ohio United Non-Theists (COUNT)

COUNT kept up with their commitment to Ronald McDonald House, pitching in 5.5 hours “housewarming.” Housewarmers work with guests whose children are staying in nearby hospitals, providing a home-like environment — greeting, tending to family needs, front desk work, cleaning, and stocking. 11 COUNT volunteers have given 1,710 hours so far to RMH since 2013.

Volunteers also donned branded aprons and served 4.5 hours in the kitchen of the Van Buren Center, which serves people experiencing homelessness.  This brings COUNT’s count to 1,218 volunteer hours donated so far at this center!

 

Atheists United 

AU — recipient of FBB’s Food Security Project grant — packed over 500 meals at LA Food Bank for hungry people!

AU also kept up with another cool monthly commitment: reading ads for people with visual disabilities. They do this via Audio Information Network Colorado, spending 2.5 hours weekly reading and creating audio files for a Monday podcast. (A great opportunity for other teams or individuals looking to volunteer remotely!)

 

Northwestern Chicagoland Humanist Crew

These windy city humanists cleaned up their adopted section of highway in Lake County, IL. Seven members spent over three hours picking up eight bags of trash. The team reports they were grateful for a pleasant outing and a big turnout of helpful people!

Northwest Chicagoland Humanist Crew posing during their Adopt-a-Highway cleanup

 

Austin Humanists at Work

Jobs performed by this rock star Food Security Project team included:

  • Giving out daylong bus passes to unsheltered clients
  • Strategizing on how to find and help people living in secluded wooded areas
  • Packing bags consisting of food and personal care items requested by their clients
  • Serving 150-200 people experiencing homelessness with the aforementioned essentials, plus books, bedding, warmth items, and underwear. They also connected people with more resources
  • Teaming up with the City of Austin to get food to hard-to-reach people in the outer city regions

 

Atheist Community of Polk County 

This superstar Food Security Project team…

  • Cooked, packed, and delivered hot meals to people experiencing homelessness on numerous occasions!
  • Provided bags of meals and groceries to students at a local elementary school!
  • Picked up trash for the Great American Cleanup and on their adopted stretch of highway!

 

Humanist Alliance Philippines, International (HAPI)

This highly active team:

  • Baked and gave out bread as a spirit-booster to hospital patients (they’ve distributed about 1,000 so far)
  • Helped teach children responsibility via a project wherein kids prepared and cooked free vegetables with their parents
  • Conducted a semimar for people living with HIV
  • Fed and talked with children about their dreams, goals, likes, and hobbies. (Volunteers report then smiles afterward were “heart-melting!”)
  • Ran a food aid stall along a highway, containing canned goods, instant noodles, and other basic food items for people still impacted by quarantine
  • Ran a store where they helped 20 mothers earning under $45 a month to start up rice-selling businesses!

A heck of a month! Way to go, teams!