Teams of the Month: South Jersey Humanists and Springfield SkepticsBy Administrator
Due to a technical issue, we were unable to post the September Team of the Month to our blog last month. Instead, we have included it here with the October winner. Thanks to both of these teams for their great work and wonderful photos! Congratulations!
Congratulations to Beyond Belief Network’s respective September and October Teams of the Month: South Jersey Humanists and Springfield Skeptics! Both Level 2 teams were chosen for this honor because of their strong spirit of volunteerism and commitment towards improving their community. Both teams were previously chosen as our Picture of the Month winners. South Jersey Humanists won February while Springfield Skeptics earned the honor in September.
South Jersey Humanists are based in Galloway, NJ. The team regularly volunteers at the Community Food Bank of New Jersey. Team members work in the organization’s warehouse sorting through donations, checking expiration dates and boxing items. Over the summer, South Jersey Humanists also harvested and donated produce grown from their plot in a community garden to the food bank. Donated produce included radishes, zucchini, cucumbers, carrots, squash, beans and tomatoes.
In April, the team hosted a booth at the Smithville Art Walk in Smithville, NJ. The group raised $50 for Atlantic County Canines, a local dog rescue organization. In a separate event held that same month, South Jersey Humanists hosted a public viewing of the movie, Letting Go of God. In lieu of admission, people brought clothing donations for Kathleen’s Closet, a thrift shop affiliated with the Community Food Bank of New Jersey. The team collected seven boxes of clothes.
South Jersey Humanists also participated in this year’s New Jersey AIDS Walk alongside other local humanist teams, including another BBN team, Camden County Humanists.
Springfield Skeptics, located in Springfield, MO, participate in service events with a strong focus on supporting the local LGBTQ+ community. One of their most notable efforts was when the team participated in the No Repeal/One Springfield campaign which was created to add and keep sexual orientation and gender identification in Springfield’s non-discrimination clause. Team members were involved in multiple activities: phone banking, canvassing, planning and hosting house parties, feeding volunteers, and large scale event planning. Although the campaign lost by only 854 votes, Springfield Skeptics is incredibly proud and humbled to have participated.
Springfield Skeptics were also willing to lend a hand at the Greater Ozarks Pridefest in July. Springfield Skeptics marched with their banner in the Equality March and tabled at the event, talking to lots of people about what a Skeptic is and what they’ve done with the LGBTQ+ community.
In August, Springfield Skeptics provided a dinner to Galagxy, their local LGBTQ+ youth group. Many of these youths are homeless or food insecure. The team made a taco bar for them, with meat and meatless options.
The team also regularly volunteers at a community garden in Nathanael-Greene Park as well as at Ozarks Food Harvest, a local food pantry.
Beyond Belief Network is proud to support South Jersey Humanists and Springfield Skeptics. We wish both teams continued success in their endeavors.
Team of the Month recognition is a benefit provided by Foundation Beyond Belief to our Beyond Belief Network teams. In order to be considered, your group must be a Level One Beyond Belief Network team and you must submit at least one event report during the month. Team of the Month selection is based on the number, length, variety, and documentation (e.g., submitted pictures, blog posts, videos, etc.) of events.
Teams can only be Team of the Month once per calendar year. If your local group does great service work but isn’t a member of BBN, you can join anytime! In addition to recognition, your team can qualify for free t-shirts and grants. If your local humanist group doesn’t volunteer, but you’d like to start, we’d love to help! For teams new to secular service, we offer tons of ideas, event guides, and advice.