Friday, 3 May 2013

Only 6 Days Left To Help Pathfinders Project Meet Its Goal!

Back in January, I did a short interview post with Conor Robinson, Project Director for the new Pathfinders Project.

The Project
This year Foundation Beyond Belief (FBB) is sponsoring the Pathfinders Project, a year-long volunteer journey, taking four humanist volunteers across the world to work in education, clean water, human rights and construction projects, and to evaluate programs for inclusion in a future Humanist Service Corps (HSC). The HSC will be a proud moment for all nonbelievers. Like the Peace Corps, the HSC will serve their fellowman in the cause of peace by living and working in developing countries, but with more focus on encouraging and demonstrating the generosity and compassion of secular humanists. 
From the Pathfinders Project website:
Pathfinders Project is a yearlong international service trip (July 2013-July 2014) sponsored by Foundation Beyond Belief, a non-profit organization created to focus, encourage, and demonstrate the generosity and compassion of secular humanists.
Pathfinders will:

  1. complete clean water, education, and sustainability projects in Asia, Africa, and Latin America.
  2. engage in dialogue across religious, cultural, and ethnic boundaries.
  3. assess countries and partner organizations with the ultimate goal of selecting one site for launching the Humanist Service Corps, a future program of Foundation Beyond Belief.
Well, things have really begun to materialize since then and there are now some concrete dates and places have been announced for the project's first year:
TASK Trenton Area Soup Kitchen, Bridge of Life School (Cambodia), Kasese Humanist Primary School (Uganda), Uganda Humanist Schools Trust (Uganda), Leo Igwe Research Project (Northern Ghana), Children of the Border (Domican Republic), Water Equador (Ecuador), Aquayuda (Colombia), Safe Passage (Guatemala), Avivara (Guatemala)
I'll just come right out and say it. If you would like to help this fantastic project get off the ground, why not consider chipping a little in?  Every amount counts.

The Difference Pathfinders Will Make: Rossi's Story

Because the Pathfinders will volunteer with the above organizations, we already have a very good idea of the important impact they will have in each locale they visit.

Conor has been kind enough to share with me the rough draft of a document he's working on.  It contains the personal stories of some who have or will be directly helped by the organizations the Pathfinders will be working with. There will be more stories posted on the Pathfinders website in the near future.

Here is Rossi's story.

Every morning, Rossi wakes with the sun. When I knew her, she was in 4th grade and 9 years old.  
School starts at 8:20. This leaves 2.5 hours of daylight before school to take care of household necessities. Fetching bathing, cooking, and "toilet" water are definite necessities, so Rossi makes several trips in the coastal rain forest she calls home.  
Obtaining reliable, clean drinking water is costly and inconvenient: $2.00 for a large jug. Keep in mind that $2.00 is enough to feed a family of seven a somewhat filling dinner.  
This agua potable has to be obtained across the river in town, an even further journey than filling jugs for cooking and washing. The river water (sometimes high enough to reach just under my chin) determines when and how we cross the river.  
It is usually Rossi who walks to the store, which is across the river, down the beach and into town via canoe. She goes to gather a few eggs, a pan and other items for the family. The daily challenge of obtaining water is intricately woven into Rossi's daily life and the lives of so many others along the Northern Coast and other parts of Ecuador.
Makes it hard for me to complain about my rough day at work. Know what I mean?

Clean drinking water is tough to come by in rural Ecuador and its cost is often prohibitive to many. Many families with young children are forced to drink untreated, contaminated water. This spreads disease and chronic illness.

How can a family hope to get ahead if they are either poisoned by the water they must drink or are forced to spend hours a day procuring safe water that could be used for education, work or even much needed rest?

Well, the Pathfinders will help!
While in Ecuador, the Pathfinders will work to dig wells, install water purification systems, and educate about clean water, hygiene, and sanitation.
And this is just one of many people this project will help.

How You Can Help Make It Happen!

Visit the Pathfinders Project Indiegogo fundraiser page, learn more and make a donation!

You can also just spread the word on Facebook and other social networking sites!


  1. Sean, Thanks for this initiative.We remain looking forward to hosting the volunteers at Kasese Humanist Primary School plus our sister schools in Masaka and Kamuli.

  2. GodlessPoutine7 May 2013 at 22:20

    They're currently in their final push! I hope they can squeeze a little more money towards the end! It's for a good cause!
    Thanks for the comment, Bwambale.


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