Posts Tagged 'bha'

Interning with a humanist organisation

At the beginning of the year I spent three months volunteering at the British Humanist Association (BHA) as a part-time intern. The internship consisted of helping the campaigns team as a campaigns assistant, as well as helping with events and other tasks. I thought it might be useful to share my experiences and explain how it came about for anyone else who is curious or interested in working for a humanist organisation.

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The Standing Conference on Religion and Belief

Good news from the BBC! A new group has been created called the Standing Conference on Religion and Belief which will be liasing with the BBC on matters of religion and belief and it includes a humanist representative, Andrew Copson from the British Humanist Association (BHA). It is believed that this will replace the BBC’s currently existing Central Religious Advisory Committee (CRAC).

I think this is a very promising development for a number of reasons. Firstly, I think it’s great that there is now someone that the BBC can consult who helps represent those who are not religious and also humanist perspectives. Secondly, this should mean that the BBC is looking to include more humanist perspectives and features about humanism and other non-believers in their programming. Finally, my personal hope is that this presents an opportunity for the BBC to take a more integrated approach to religion and belief. Instead of keeping religious programmes separate, I would like to see programmes looking at a broad range of perspectives from across the many beliefs. Society benefits when we have an increased understanding of each other’s beliefs and cultures. When we recognise the contributions that come from other beliefs and perspectives we gain tolerance, respect and compassion for others. Ultimately, all humans have the same needs and the same fears. I believe that a media service which is funded by the public has a responsibility to educate and promote understanding and tolerance. With the formation of this new group I hope to see the BBC taking on the challenge.

Humanism Universe

Apologies for the intermittent updates at the moment, I’ve been a little busy lately. In the meanwhile, I’d like to recommend the Humanism Universe site on Netvibes which has been created by Bob Churchill of the British Humanist Association. Basically, it’s a portal for all sorts of media, sites and people related to humanism and it’s maintained by the British Humanist Association. Various pages gather together newsfeeds and blogs related to humanism, secularism, religion, the BHA, science, arts and culture and plenty more. There are also newsfeeds for distinguished supporters of the BHA so it’s a great way to get an overview of what humanists are saying and thinking right now, be they politicians, authors, scientists, you name it. So go on over and take a look around! Don’t forget to send them a link to your humanist blog if you are a BHA member or send them suggestions for good sites they might have missed out.

Visit Humanism Universe.

All aboard the Atheist Bus?

Recently, there has been great excitement surrounding the campaign for advertising posters with atheist messages on London buses. The excitement comes not just because of the what but also the how. Back on June 10th this year, comedian and journalist Ariane Sherine, wrote a post on the Guardian’s Comment is Free website bemoaning her frustration and irritation with encountering evangelising messages on buses, billboards and other advertising. Sherine rang advertising standards to complain and was informed that citing religious scripture from the bible was permitted, so she decided that there needed to be some positive atheist messages available too. Her suggestion, “There’s probably no god. Now stop worrying and get on with your life”, struck a chord with many non-believers and the flood of comments became a mound of pledges which evolved into a fundraising success which startled even the professional fundraisers and campaigners.

Continue reading ‘All aboard the Atheist Bus?’

The Inaugural UK Secular Student Conference

Over the weekend of June 21-22nd, Edinburgh University Humanist Society was proud to host the inaugural Secular Student Conference. This is the first time that atheist, secular and humanist societies from universities across the UK have gathered together to share their experiences and ideas and to meet each other.

It was a fantastic weekend with lots of great people and ideas. The groups present included:

Durham University Humanist Society
Edinburgh University Humanist Society
Keele Humanist Group
Leeds Atheist Society
Oxford Secular Society
Warwick Atheists
Southampton Atheist Society sent a document with their details and suggestions

The first day focussed on learning about the different societies. On Saturday morning, the societies gave presentations and introduced themselves and events they’d organised. In the afternoon there were presentations from various organisations including the British Humanist Association, the Humanist Society of Scotland and the National Secular Society. On Sunday, the societies got down to talking about how they can work together and provide support and representation for exisiting and new student societies. There was also discussion about working together on events and campaigns and co-ordinating resources. Serious plans are under way to build an umbrella organisation created for and run by student groups in the UK. If you’re interested in finding out more or becoming involved, secular student discussion can be found at the Secular Portal site created by the Leeds Atheists Society.

Pictures and videos from the event can be found here.