Share your opinions on our Natural World encore and Education beneficiary nominees


FBB EncoreBy Cathleen O’Grady, director of special projects, and AJ Chalom, Humanist Giving Program coordinator

Foundation Beyond Belief’s Humanist Giving Program is bringing back some of the beneficiaries we’ve supported in the past as encore beneficiaries. Our first-quarter Challenge the Gap encore beneficiary was Buddhist Global Relief, and our current second-quarter encore Human Rights beneficiary is Innocence Project of Texas.

Our next encore will be in the Natural World category, and we want your help. Please fill out this survey to voice your opinion on who you think should be our Q3 2013 beneficiaries. The survey will be active until May 19. The survey also asks for your vote on the charities nominated for our Education category. Currently, our grant totals average $8,200 per beneficiary.

Natural World Encore Beneficiary Criteria:

Here were our basic criteria for choosing our encore beneficiary nominees:

  1. They were beneficiaries in 2010 or 2011
  2. They have been featured only once previously
  3. They meet our current and more detailed vetting requirements

There are three previously featured Natural World charities up for consideration as encore beneficiaries. We will use this survey to determine member preference to help the board make an informed decision between the finalists:

  • EcoHealth Alliance (formerly Wildlife Trust), first featured in Q1 2010
  • Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund, first featured in Q1 2011
  • Global Green USA, first featured in Q1 2010

EcoHealth Alliance uses science-based solutions and partnerships to protect global health and safeguard ecosystems. Their projects include preventing infectious disease pandemics, the illegal wildlife trade and exotic pets, conservation medicine, and focused conservation on certain species (elephants, bats, amphibians).

This charity was selected because of its rigorous basis in science, its strong connection with the Millennium Development Goals, and the fact that it draws the link between environmental protection and helping humans.
EcoHealth Alliance (formerly Wildlife Trust) received a $1,145 grant from Foundation Beyond Belief. They have a 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and an annual budget of $8.7 million.

Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International is dedicated to the conservation and protection of gorillas and their habitats in Africa, through research on gorillas and education initiatives. Programs include working against poaching and other threats, supporting national parks, building awareness and education, rehabilitating rescued gorillas, and studying gorillas to gain a better understanding of habitat and biodiversity, behavior and ecology, and the effect of the human landscape. They also argue that helping local human populations helps gorillas, so they are involved in educational projects (at all levels of education) and health projects, such as health clinics, clean water programs, intestinal parasite prevention, hygiene education, and protein access.

This organization has the ability to build a strong connection through its stories, and it has an innovative approach in extending its reach to surrounding communities and getting involved in educational and health projects, as well as a science-based approach to gorilla conservation.

The Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund received a $2,500 grant from Foundation Beyond Belief. They have a 3-star rating on Charity Navigator and an annual budget of $4.5 million.

Global Green USA is the American affiliate of Green Cross International, founded by former Soviet Union President Gorbachev, to foster a global value shift toward a sustainable and secure future. Programs include green homes, green schools, recycling, energy efficiency and solar power, and weapons elimination. They have worked toward rebuilding New Orleans in a sustainable fashion.

Global Green USA is a candidate because of their multi-faceted approach to environmentalism, inclusion of social justice issues, global spread, and cohesion with Millennium Development Goals. They also have many achievements mentioned in their annual report.

Global Green USA received a grant of $1,275 from Foundation Beyond Belief. They have a 4-star rating on Charity Navigator and a budget of approximately $5 million.

Education Beneficiary Nominations:

Women’s Global Education Project works in Senegal and Kenya addressing education, literacy, health, and human rights issues. Their programs have impacted at least 4,000 individuals and their families. They provide scholarships for students to attend school, support adult literacy, and have made a significant effort encouraging girls and women to say no to female genital mutilation in their communities.

They have a strong correlation to Millennium Development Goals, impacting four high-priority MDGs and two lower priority MDGs based on Foundation Beyond Belief’s analysis. They also have a proven track record of success.

Women’s Global Education Project was a finalist for Q1 of 2013. They are too small for a Charity Navigator rating, but have been thoroughly vetted by FBB staff. They have an annual budget of $205,000.

Equal Education is a collection of educators, activists, community members, and students working to improve the quality and equality of South Africa’s education system. Using evidence-based techniques for improving education in the nation’s most impoverished schools, Equal Education focuses on building infrastructure, teacher competency, and education materials. Their campaigns include creating minimum standards for school infrastructure, creating an on-time program for high schools, and creating a generation of activists working toward equality in the education system.

Equal Education is a registered charity in a foreign country, and is not rated by US charity evaluators. However, it has been thoroughly vetted by FBB staff, including audited financial statements. Their annual budget is approximately the equivalent of $1 million.

Remember to go to the survey now and choose your preferred beneficiaries. Thanks!