Top Ten Ways to Spend the Summer Solstice


Slather on the sunscreen and clear your calendar: let’s celebrate the Summer Solstice and World Humanist Day! If you’re not sure how to spend the longest day of the year, look no further than ten of the many charities FBB has featured as Humanist Grants beneficiaries over the years. And for our friends in the Southern Hemisphere, we haven’t forgotten you. We’re pretty confident you’ll enjoy this list, too!

10. Catch Some Waves

Wholesome Wave

Okay, so it turns out this isn’t about surfing all day. What Wholesome Wave really does is a lot cooler. They make it easier and more affordable for folks struggling with food insecurity to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables for themselves and their families. We’d much rather ride this wave!

9. Go for a Bike Ride

World Bicycle Relief Bicycles for Educational Empowerment program photo

Better yet, see how World Bicycle Relief transforms the lives of people in developing countries by providing them with durable, reliable, and affordable transportation. Access to transportation in the form of bicycles means access to healthcare, education, and new economic opportunities. Clearly they aren’t just spinning their wheels!

8. Make Hay While the Sun Shines

Development in Gardening woman sowing cabbage field

It turns out this is almost literally true for Development in Gardening. The organization works with communities in Africa to develop sustainable gardens whose produce improves the quality of life and nutrition for the most vulnerable members of the community. Who needs hay with a garden like this?

7. Don't Be a Square…

SquareOne Villages Emerald Village

…but do check out how SquareOne Villages tackles the problem of affordable housing. Their tiny houses help bridge the gap between homelessness and conventional housing, and the community structure gives residents a voice and stake in the community’s success. They’re hip to be Square(One).

6. Explore Your Inner Artist

Artists for Humanity collaborative mural with Kaz Oomori

If your paintings look a bit more preschool than Picasso, why not check out the masterpieces being created by teens with Artists for Humanity ? AFH employs under-resourced youth in paid apprenticeships with professional artists, enriching their lives and the vibrancy of the community. It’s truly a thing of beauty.

5. Detoxify (The Earth)

Pure Earth Tajikistan toxic waste clean up

Skip the spa day and learn more about what Pure Earth is doing to clean up toxic air, soil, and water pollution in communities around the world. As far as we’re concerned, care for the planet is self-care for every person.

4. Prepare a Meal with Friends

DC Central Kitchen volunteers harvesting crops

In the words of the inimitable Julia Child, “a party without cake is just a meeting.” We couldn’t agree more, Julia. DC Central Kitchen doesn’t focus quite so heavily on cake, but their impressive menu of programs more than makes up for it (even though we really, really love cake). With their culinary job training program, community meals and school lunches, and delivery of healthy foods to food deserts, DC Central Kitchen serves it up right.

3. Take Time to Reconnect

Thunder Valley CDC Red Cloud Indian School

Reconnecting young people and families with Lakota culture was how Thunder Valley CDC got its start, but their current focus areas cover everything from a Lakota Language Initiative (including an immersion program which FBB helped fund) to housing and homeownership to youth leadership and so much more. Reconnecting past with present is the best way to build a better future.

2 . Curl Up with a Good Book

ConTextos 3 girls with books

If anyone knows the importance of a good story, it’s ConTextos . Through their work in El Salvador and Chicago, ConTextos uses reading, writing, and storytelling to help children and incarcerated adults address trauma, develop pro-social behaviors, and become more resilient and empathetic. Now that’s a story worth telling.

1. Be Proud of Who You Are

Audre Lorde Project how to be an ally cartoon

The Summer Solstice means more hours in the day to take pride in who you are and who you love. And for the Audre Lorde Project , that means supporting Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Two-Spirit, Trans and Gender Non Conforming (LGBTSTGNC) People of Color in New York City. Their programs are all about community organizing, because ALP believes community members themselves (that is, LGBTSTGNC People of Color) can best identify the biggest issues facing them andcome up with the best solutions.

Whether you’re busy celebrating the Summer Solstice, Winter Solstice, Pride Month, Take Your Dog to Work Day, a day at the beach, or just another day, FBB will be hard at work finding the best of the best secular charities in the areas of poverty and health, education, human rights, and the natural world. Help support us by signing up as a monthly donor to our 10th Anniversary Campaign.