Introducing your beneficiaries for 1st quarter 2011


As of Jan 1, 2011, our more than 700 humanist members have donated over $83,000 to 37 charities working to improve this world and this life. Let’s meet our first slate of beneficiaries for 2011.

dfgfThis quarter’s beneficiary in ANIMAL PROTECTION is the Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund. Founded by Dian Fossey in 1978, The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund is dedicated to the conservation and protection of gorillas and their habitats in Africa. DFGF supports continued research on the gorillas and their threatened ecosystems and provides education about their relevance to the world in which we live. In collaboration with government agencies and other international partners, we also provide assistance to local communities through education, health, training and development initiatives.

Our first beneficiary in the new CHALLENGE THE GAP category is the Interfaith Youth Core. IFYC builds mutual respect and pluralism among young people from different religious traditions by empowering them to work together to serve others. People of differing worldviews interact with ever-greater frequency. That interaction tends either toward conflict or cooperation. Where so many of these interactions tend towards conflict, the Interfaith Youth Core aims to introduce a new relationship, one that isifyc about mutual respect and pluralism. Instead of focusing a dialogue on political or theological differences, we build relationships on the values that we share, such as hospitality and caring for the Earth, and how we can live out those values together to contribute to the betterment of our community.

PLEASE NOTE: Because this category is new in 2011, members wishing to support Challenge the Gap must log in and click on Manage Donation to allocate a percentage of their monthly donation.

Why is a humanist foundation supporting a religious organization?

gologoIn CHILD WELFARE, we are pleased to support generationOn, a newly-created youth service organization focused on igniting the power of all children to make their mark by creating meaningful change in the world. With service-learning and volunteer action at its core, generationOn mobilizes children of all ages, pre-school through high school, to solve real world problems through community service. Launched in October 2010, generationOn brings several existing youth service organizations under one umbrella, including Children for Children, our original choice for Q1 Child Welfare.


Our EDUCATION beneficiary is Roots & Wings International, a small, effective rawcharity providing educational opportunities for indigenous people in Guatemala. Programs include college scholarships, tutoring, and computer literacy. “Education is the best tool to empower indigenous communities to break the cycle of poverty,” says founder Erik Swanson. It’s an idea also found throughout the humanist literature and often expressed by members who support our Education beneficiaries.

This quarter’s ENVIRONMENT beneficiary is Friends of the Earth. FOE and its foefederation of grassroots groups in 76 countries defend the environment and champion a more healthy and just world. The organization describes itself as “progressive environmental advocates who pull no punches and speak sometimes uncomfortable truths to power.” FOE’s current campaigns focus on promoting clean energy and solutions to climate change, keeping toxic and risky technologies out of the food we eat and products we use, and protecting marine ecosystems and the people who live and work near them.

In HEALTH we are proud to support First Candle, a U.S. national health organization uniting parents, caregivers and researchers nationwide with fcgovernment, business and community service groups to advance infant health and survival. By supporting research in infant mortality prevention, First Candle’s impact goes well beyond the borders of the U.S., supporting the fight against stillbirth and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) in countries around the world. In addition to promoting safe pregnancies and the survival of babies through the first years of life, First Candle provides compassionate grief support to all those affected by the death of a baby.

The Military Religious Freedom Foundation, this quarter’s HUMAN RIGHTS beneficiary, is dedicated to ensuring that all members of the United States Armed mrffForces receive the constitutional guarantees of religious freedom to which they and all Americans are entitled. Selected after a record number of nominations both from members and non-members, MRFF is uniquely positioned to address longstanding concerns regarding religious freedom in the U.S. military and has an impressive record of success in mounting legal challenges and raising public awareness. MRFF holds that no member of the U.S. Armed Forces may be compelled in any way to conform to a particular religion or religious philosophy, to witness or engage in any religious exercise, or to endure unwanted religious proselytization, and notes that the full exercise of religious freedom includes the right not to subscribe to any religion.

This quarter’s PEACE beneficiary is Nonviolent Peaceforce. NP trains and deploys unarmed civilian peacekeepers to conflict zones to reduce violence and protect npcivilians. NP envisions a world in which large-scale unarmed civilian peacekeeping using proven nonviolent strategies is recognized as a viable alternative in preventing and mitigating violent conflicts worldwide. NP’s primary strategy for achieving this vision is the creation of space to foster dialogue. NP currently maintains peacekeeping teams in Sri Lanka, the Philippines, and Sudan and is an NGO in Special Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations.

Our POVERTY beneficiary this quarter is Women Thrive Worldwide, the leading non-profit organization shaping U.S. policy to help women in developing countries wtwlift themselves out of poverty. Women Thrive develops, shapes, and advocates for policies that foster economic opportunity for women living in poverty. We focus on making U.S. international assistance and trade programs prioritize women. We bring together a diverse coalition of over 50 organizations and 25,000 individuals united in the belief that women are the key to ending global poverty, and empowering them is not only right, it’s also the most effective long-term solution to world poverty. 

Our tenth category as always is Foundation Beyond Belief itself. Participation in our charitable giving program is absolutely free. If this service is important to you as a member, we hope you’ll choose to designate a percentage of your monthly donation to support the work of the Foundation.


For more details, click on Current Beneficiaries.


Members: See an organization that especially moves you — or one you’d rather not support? Remember that you can change the distribution of your monthly donation at any time. Simply click on Manage Donation in the sidebar (while logged in).


Not yet a member? Join today at the giving level of your choice!