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My Pet Project – An(other) Secular Organization We Can Be Proud Of

February 25, 2008

I have been doing research for the last few months in preparation of one day (in the next year or two) forming an organization that provides a community for atheists, as well as support and advocacy.   I’m planning to use my experience with non-profit groups to make it successful.  I figured I might as well let the cat out of the bag….

I decided to call the organization the International Society of Secularists.

There are two notable groups I know of that already exist that have some of the same goals and geographical scope that I have in mind for my organization.  The first is American Atheists.  The other is the Atheist Alliance International.  The fact that I intend to found another organization doesn’t mean I think AA or AAI are ineffective or flawed.  Hopefully, when I explain more about the ISS, my reasons for forming it will become clear.

I started to write a blog entry a while back that I suppose was a more formal introduction of the ISS.  I never published it, so what better time than now?  It started like this:

If I were to start a comprehensive atheist organization, it might have these goals:

Support

Social

Regular social gatherings for each chapter

Mentors to help those in need

Legal (will probably come later after organization grows)

Discrimination

Separation of church and state

Community

Celebrations and ceremonies

Weddings

Funerals/memorial gatherings

Coming out parties

Graduations?

Secular holidays?  Winter solstice, etc…

Service

Work with United Way (or other organizations), other service orgs

Conferences/other events

Speakers

seminars

Activism

Petitions

Marches

Rallies

Mail outs/handouts

debates

Outreach to:

religious leaders

meetings, letters, phone calls

media

advertising

public relations w/media

press releases

politicians

meetings, letters, phone calls

other atheist/secular/nonreligious groups

attend their meetings, conferences, write them letters, PR efforts

general public (through media, activism)

telling them we exist and are here to support atheists and their families and friends

*****************************************************************************

So… I suppose that’s a good enough introduction for the time being.  I intend to talk about more of the specifics in more detail in the near future.  Stay tuned…

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