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The Spokane Secular Meetup Message Board › To Which Charity Should We Donate in 2013?

To Which Charity Should We Donate in 2013?

Thomas J. B.
Spokane, WA
Post #: 308
At the January meeting we renewed our annual pledge of a year-long donation program, with all proceeds going to a charity (preferably a local one, but we aren't restricted to that).

The purpose of this is to satisfy our mission to be a positive influence within the community at large, as well as to debunk the myth that secularists have no morals and don't care about anyone but themselves.

There were 2 charities suggested at the January meeting. In addition, I have included some previously suggested options. They are posted here for further research and discussion prior to making a final decision, which will happen at the March meeting (since we will not be having a February meeting). If you have any opinions about these charities, please post them here for everyone to consider. If you would like to suggest charities for consideration this year (or in the future), send an e-mail to­.

Suggested at the January meeting:

Mobius Spokane - Mobius Spokane began in 2005 with the merger of the Inland Northwest Science and Technology Center and the Children's Museum of Spokane, opening as Mobius Kids Children's Museum in 2005.

Now, with the 2012 opening of the 26,000 square-foot Mobius Science Center as well, plus a broad range of camps and educational programs, Mobius has evolved into a major regional asset, with twin facilities in the heart of downtown Spokane.

Vanessa Behan Crisis Nursery - The mission of the Crisis Nursery is to provide immediate refuge for children and support to strengthen families. This mission evolved from the tragic story of Vanessa Kay Behan, a Spokane girl who died from child abuse injuries at the age of two. Following her death, a group of local business people established the Crisis Nursery so that parents would have a safe place to bring their children in the face of crises. Our primary services are:

  • 24-hour child care for infants and children under the age of seven
  • Parent education
  • Crisis counseling for parents
  • Referrals to other community agencies

The Crisis Nursery helps parents who are having difficulty providing safe shelter and care for their children. They may be dealing with issues as complex as substance abuse, domestic violence and homelessness. Or, they may just be exhausted and worn-out from the demands of parenting.

Additional options:

Second Harvest - Second Harvest has been leading the hunger-relief network in the region since 1971. Second Harvest distributes more than 1 million pounds of donated food each month to help people in need in 26 counties in Eastern Washington and North Idaho. Partnerships with more than 250 neighborhood food banks and meal centers make it possible to feed 48,000 people each week. Four out of 10 food bank clients are children. One out of 10 food bank clients are seniors.

The Trevor Project - The Trevor Project is determined to end suicide among LGBTQ youth by providing life-saving and life-affirming resources including our nationwide, 24/7 crisis intervention lifeline, digital community and advocacy/educational programs that create a safe, supportive and positive environment for everyone.

Volunteers of America: Crosswalk Teen Shelter - Founded in 1985, Crosswalk is an emergency shelter, a school drop-out prevention program, and a group of lifesaving and life-changing programs dedicated to breaking the cycle of youth homelessness. In an average year, Crosswalk serves more than 1,000 youth. Emergency shelter is available 365 days a year and all services are free and voluntary.

Most Crosswalk kids (ages 13-17) have complicated personal histories. Crosswalk restores hope and encourages personal responsibility among homeless youth, including those who eventually return to their families.

Run by a small professional staff, Crosswalk relies heavily on the generosity of churches, service clubs, families and businesses who provide daily meals as well as community volunteers who provide tutoring and enrichment activities and donors who provide financial support, in-kind services and scholarship funds.

The Spokane Humane Society - Committed to creating a humane community in which animals are treated with compassion and respect, resources are readily available to those who require support for the animals in their lives. Engaging and educating the community by reducing the intake of animals through spay/neuter programs and creating an environment where the animals and the organization thrive.

When the Spokane Humane Society was founded by a group of concerned citizens in 1897, we looked after the draft horses used to carry loads up Spokane's South Hill. Nowadays, SHS takes in more than 5,000 animals a year, mostly dogs and cats in need of compassionate care.

The Spokane Humane Society is a 501c3 non-profit local public charity dedicated to the welfare of companion animals. Since 1897, we have acted as a refuge for animals in peril by providing care, shelter, and placement for tens of thousands of lost, neglected, and unwanted animals in the greater Spokane area. The number of animals we serve has varied over the years based upon our mission and role as animal control or in our current role as a companion animal adoption shelter. We place between 2500-3500 animals annually through our adoption program and we reach out to tens of thousands of individuals promoting the importance of animals in our lives and the need to reduce the surplus animal population through spay & neuter programs.

Since 1897, the Spokane Humane Society has extended the hand of kindness to stray and unwanted animals in the greater Spokane Area. The Society shelters and cares for companion animals, transfers stray animals from animal control when they are out of space, operates a low-income spay and neuter clinic and educates the public about humane issues and responsible pet care.
Daphne C.
Spokane, WA
Post #: 20
Second Harvest.
A former member
Post #: 108
The Vanessa Behan Crisis Nursery

I have a close relative who suffers from manic depression. When she had her last birth - a set of identical twin girls - the father of the twins left her and the twins. Besides that, the mother had three older children she was dealing with, financial troubles, etc. Over a year period, on several occasions, she relied on Vanessa Behan to provide a safe place for her babies from the horribly stressful environment that was occurring in her household.

For what it's worth, I believe Vanessa Behan was one of the big lifesavers for both the babies and my relative. Those two girls, (now 10 years old) are thriving, smart, and lively. (The mother worked hard over the years to become exponentially more emotionally stable, and is now a happier, loving mother who can take on the role of motherhood for all five of her children.)

Not just a platitude ... children really are our future. It is simply a realistic benefit to the individual children in particular and our society in general to strive to keep our most vulnerable citizens safe and well; in this case - our babies.

That's my 2 cents worth and plus.
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