Last November, after Typhoon Haiyan hit the Philippines, the American Humanist Association’s Humanist Charities raised more than $25,000 in a single day. Foundation Beyond Belief’s Humanist Crisis Response program raised more than $61,000.
That’s just one example of what the two charities have done in times of crisis by appealing to atheists who want to help out.
Now, the two charities have joined forces to become one large relief group (under Foundation Beyond Belief’s umbrella) “in order to further promote humanist philanthropy and more efficiently channel aid and funding to charitable causes.”
“This merger is a positive move that will grow the relief efforts of the humanist community,” said Roy Speckhardt, executive director of the American Humanist Association. “The end result will be more money directed to charitable activities, dispelling the false claim that nonbelievers don’t give to charity.”
“This merger is a great way to enhance the ability of the freethought community to respond quickly and well to major humanitarian crises,” said Dale McGowan, executive director of Foundation Beyond Belief. “We are always looking for ways to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of our work.”
In short, the merger will allow both groups to tap into their membership base in times of need — without having to “compete” against each other to see who can raise more money. It means more donations helping more people. As someone who has worked with multiple organizations in the freethought world, this sort of cooperation is wonderful to see.
I would love say the combined relief effort will never have to be used… but we know natural disasters happen. The best we can to is be prepared to help when the need arises.