If Atheists Speak But No One Notices,
Are We Making A Difference?
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F O U N D A T I O N
The AAI Foundation, an internal program of Atheist Alliance International, supports educational projects - including through international exchanges - and advocates on behalf of atheists facing discrimination around the world, particularly in developing countries.
Recent AAI Foundation projects include:
- Humanist Schools in Africa.
- In 2010, AAI provided volunteer and financial support for the Kasese Humanist Primary School in Kasese, Uganda. A team of four AAI volunteers spent 3 months at the site to assist in opening the school, including training of administrators on business practices and financial tracking as well as training of teachers in foundational concepts of humanism and nontheism. Volunteers also assisted in facilities improvement, helping in planting fences, building school furniture, and laying foundations for new buildings. AAI has continued to be a major sponsor in providing financial assistance to support students from indigent families as well as providing capital for school expansion, including a garden and chicken coop to assist in the feeding of the students and staff.
- In 2013, AAI provided seed money for the first private secular school in the Gambia, the Escuela Moderna Kerewan Kindergarten (EMKK), in the city district of Kerewan in partnership with the Gambia Secular Assembly. The school was established to replace a Christian school that was closing in the area. AAI also helped raise thousands of dollars to provide necessary repairs to bring the school up to code. The Escuela Moderna school opened with 3 full classes of students in September 2013.
- Legal assistance and family support for atheist oppression.
Alexander Aan is an Indonesian man who was attacked by his neighbors, fired from his government job, and then arrested by the Indonesian police and convicted with a 3-year prison sentence for 'inciting religious hatred' after posting 'God does not exist' on his personal Facebook page. AAI covered Alexander's legal costs and provided family support while working with local human-rights groups to campaign for his release, for a change in Indonesian law and to fundraise to assist with his family's ongoing expenses while Alexander, the family breadwinner, languishes in prison.
- Scholarships for the next generation of humanist leaders in indigent countries
AAI recognizes that education is the key to liberation from religious superstition, yet many people in the world do not have access to education due to economic conditions or social discrimination. AAI has set up a scholarship fund for atheists in underdeveloped or distressed countries who wish to be trained in becoming teachers and leaders in humanism. AAI Foundation scholarships can pay for anything from short-term training in a local program to overseas pursuit of a college degree. Candidates are invited to provide an essay of why they would like to be considered and what they hope to accomplish with their training as well as a description of their economic and social conditions to apply.
- Relief assistance to countries and regions devastated by natural or man-made disasters.
In early 2010, the country of Haiti suffered a massive earthquake that leveled much of its capital city, Port-Au-Prince, and left the majority of its residence homeless. AAI worked with our Haitian affiliate, MOJELIPH, to provide thousands of dollars to help set up water wells and sanitation shelters to provide daily survival support.
- Overseas social work project sponsorship
AAI organizes social work tours for groups of participants from our affiliate groups to visit our affiliates in other countries for extended periods of time to assist in the implementation of local quality-of-life improvements, such as digging water wells and cisterns, building roads and fences, bringing in electricity and plumbing, and setting up farmer's cooperatives and medical clinics. (See 'AAI Affiliate / Associate Project Proposals', below.) Our affiliates are encouraged to organize work groups who are able and willing to spend anywhere from one to six months overseas on these projects. Our affiliates also raise the money to underwrite these projects. These projects are done under the guise of taking care of our environment and helping our fellow human-beings, as well as providing a chance for our affiliates to be seen as contributing positively to the local community.
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AAI Foundation projects are funded primarily through directed donations to those specific projects. What we can do depends on the support we receive. There is a lot of work to do to further atheism and secularism in the world and we are always seeking additional projects, particularly in developing countries, where education and empirical knowledge can make huge improvements in the quality of life for communities.
AAI Affiliate / Associate Project Proposals
AAI Foundation projects are generally proposed by AAI's Affiliate and Associate Members. Affiliate and Associate Members or other interested parties may submit proposals to Atheist Alliance International requesting support for an atheist/freethought project in their country or region. At a minimum, such proposals should include:
- A detailed description of the proposed activity
- The proposed dates for the project
- The proposed venue for the project and the status of any discussions with the venue
- A detailed budget for the project, including an explanation of all material expenditure items, supported by quotes where relevant
- Information on other sources of funding for the project and, where relevant, the status of discussions with each other potential group or individual that may provide funding
- The marketing/advertising plan for the project (if relevant)
- Details of the members of the project committee, their positions and relevant experience
- Specific details of the support requested from Atheist Alliance International
Proposals are accepted throughout the year. To submit a proposal, please email it in electronic form to president [at] atheistalliance [dot] org.