Nonbelief Relief aids bloggers, flood victims

Nonbelief Relief, a charity established last year by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, recently gave a $5,000 stipend to a prominent Bangladeshi writer who has found asylum in Canada. (See story on front page.)

Nonbelief Relief’s aid will tide over Raihan Abir and his family as they establish themselves in Canada and obtain visas for study and work. He received previous aid from the Center for Inquiry to help in his first year in Canada.

Abir is the 11th Bangladeshi nonbeliever or blogger aided to date by Nonbelief Relief in the face of hit lists going after atheists. Most of them are still in transition and cannot be named. The Islamic State and al-Qaida have claimed credit for recent vicious executions of those targeted for nonbelief.

Nonbelief Relief is working with a loose international coalition, including Center for Inquiry and Rafida Bonya Ahmed, to vet those needing assistance.

Nonbelief Relief exists as a humanitarian agency for atheists, agnostics, freethinkers and their supporters to improve this world — our only world. Nonbelief Relief seeks to remediate conditions of human suffering and injustice on a global scale, whether the result of natural disasters, human actions or adherence to religious dogma. Such relief is not limited to, but includes, assistance for individuals targeted for nonbelief, secular activism or blasphemy.

The charity this year has now spent about $50,000 in grants to individuals whose lives have been imperiled because of public atheist activism.

To help Nonbelief Relief help others in the name of the community of nonbelievers and replenish its coffers, please make tax-deductible donations to Nonbelief Relief via FFRF. Indicate “Nonbelief Relief” in the memo of your check payable to FFRF (mailed to FFRF, PO Box 750, Madison WI 53701) or use the handy drop-down designation on FFRF’s website donation page (ffrf.org/donate), to ensure your gift goes to the charity. (If you wish, you may further designate your gift for endangered nonbelievers in Bangladesh.)

Aid for flood relief

On behalf of nonbelievers, Nonbelief Relief gave $10,000 in flood relief to a hard-hit school district in Louisiana.

FFRF has asked that it be used for the repair or rebuilding of Livingston Parish Public Schools infrastructure or buses.

On the same day $10,000 was funneled to help the Livingston public school district, which suffered loss of many school buses and other major flooding damage, FFRF Co-President Annie Laurie Gaylor also sent a polite but pointed letter to Superintendent Rick Wentzel.

The letter says, “It has come to our attention that the parish public schools website has a banner message reading in part, ‘Praying for all of our Livingston Parish people – Superintendent Rick Wentzel.'” FFRF, extending “sincerest sympathies for the tragedy facing the school district” and greater area, notes that the school district has an obligation to concentrate on secular, not religious, needs.

“A famous freethinker of the 19th century, Robert Green Ingersoll, once wrote, ‘The hands that help are better far than lips that pray,'” Gaylor adds. “To that end, Nonbelief Relief is very pleased to provide the practical assistance of $10,000 in flood relief to the Livingston Parish Public Schools.”

Freedom From Religion Foundation