Volunteer groups in the Beyond Belief Network performed quite a few labors of love for their communities during Valentine's season! We are, of course, shifting gears to socially-distant volunteerism for a while, but we'd still like to take a moment to appreciate teams' pre-lockdown work over the month of February. It's a taste of what we have to look forward to once groups can get together as usual again!
In February we had a new team join the Beyond Belief Network – Atheists United in Los Angeles, California. Welcome aboard!
Kol Hadash Humanistic Congregation in Chicago, Illinois (pictured above) contributed to the costs of providing a meal to residents of the Chicago Ronald McDonald House, which provides housing to families of children at the Lurie Children's Hospital. The team then prepared, served, and cleaned up after the meal.
Central Ohio United Non-Theists (COUNT) in Columbus, Ohio again participated in Winter Sports events with the Adaptive Sports Connection (ASC), a chapter of Disabled Sports USA. Trained Winter Sports Volunteers assist certified lead instructors in giving 2-3 hour lessons to students with various handicaps. Volunteers help assess students, select outriggers and other equipment, adjust before the lesson and help during it. Students may be accompanied by a friend or family member who will learn how to assist using lifts so that students can ski or snowboard without instructors. COUNT participated in these events every weekend in February, and have contributed 392 volunteer hours since they started working with ASC in August 2018.
COUNT also had ten volunteers working as servers at the Van Buren Center, which provides housing and meals to families and women experiencing homelessness. Some volunteers served dinners while others washed dishes, mopped floors, and clean tables. Once the dishes were done, volunteers adjourned to the Omnipresent Atheists meetup in progress for dinner, drinks and conversation.
COUNT volunteered a total of almost 15 hours in February as housewarmers at the Columbus Ohio Ronald McDonald House (RMH). This RMH location provides housing and meals to families with children being treated at Nationwide Children’s Hospital and other area hospitals. Housewarmers work with guests to provide a home-like environment, greeting and assisting with family needs, answering phones, giving tours, assting with check-in/check-out, preparing guest rooms, cleaning the facility, doing laundry, restocking supplies, and staffing the front desk.
Northwestern Chicagoland Humanist Crew in Mundelein, Illinois gathered together to make valentines for end-of-life patients at Advocate Hospice in Lake Zurich. Lots of people got involved, with ages ranging from five years old to grandparents. Everyone had a great time coming up with 27 unique, lovingly-crafted cards.
The Atheist Community of Polk County, Florida, held three of their regular weekend events to clean their adopted stretch of highway, with 11 people helping during one event— the most yet!
Brevard Area Atheists in Melbourne, Florida also held their regular road cleanup event, picking up six bags and 47 pounds of trash in their neighborhood.
Fellowship of Freethought-Dallas in Dallas Texas held their Humans Helping Humans Homeless Outreach event on the fourth Sunday, bringing food and supplies to an encampment. Each month the team spends a few hours with people living in the woods in the park, providing a hot meal and other snacks and items.
Thank you teams for your hard work and inspiration!
Beyond Belief Network is a collective of over 125 humanist, atheist, and other non-believing organizations putting compassionate humanism into action through community volunteering and charitable fundraising. Its just one of many examples of the work our humanist community does to make a positive impact on the world. The network wouldn't be possible without you. You can support our work in organizing this network by making a contribution to our General Fund today.