Tag Archives: social activities

Day of Service event at SafeHouse

Volunteer braved the strange and squally weather yesterday and came together at SafeHouse to make a difference – and make a fantabulous meal.  Check out this made-with-love buffet of choices  (careful, reading this will make you hungry):

img_20160914_192549444Honey baked ham, lasagne, fall spiced vegetable saute, steamed carrots, cheese tray, olive tray, bread, field greens & veggie salad, fresh fruit platter, rice and vegetables, pigs-in-a-blanket, baked brie with maple almond cranberry chutney, peas, mac & cheese, potato salad, green bean casserole, and more.  And to “topping” it off…our fabulous dessert chef prepared an ice cream bar with homemade red velvet brownies, homemade cookies, vanilla ice cream and an amazing assortment of tantalizing toppings!

We are grateful for our creative, talented members –
thank you to each volunteer for investing your evening to uplift others.

1The next three months are going to ROCK even more.  We can’t wait for October, the Halloween themed dinner with mummy-dogs, cute spider cakes, strawberry whipped cream ghosts, and all kinds of other creative fun halloweeny foods!

The September meal serve event was our 9/11 Day of Service – a few days late.  In our last post, we shared that we host an annual observance not only to honor the victims, survivors, and responders, but also the spirit of Meetup.com.  Meetup was founded after 9/11 to provide an online platform for bringing people together offline to build and strengthen community. Our volunteers received a volunteer pin from the Corporation for National and Community Service.

img_20160914_173308389We also dropped off a donation of 170 children and young adult STEM-themed books provided by the Central Florida Freethought Community.  Thank you CFFC!


Our 5th Anniversary!

We celebrate this milestone with gratitude for each moment invested in volunteerism and for every person who puts caring into action to make a difference in our community. What you do MATTERS. Thank you to everyone who has supported and been a part of our efforts over the past five years!

BE. Orlando is about fostering a positive social network of diverse, service-engaged individuals ; but we are more than that.

220px-secularhumanismlogo3dpriderainbowcolorsFounded on September 2, 2011, by Atheists with a vision of community, service, and friendship, BE. Orlando has evolved into a resource for secular and Humanist individuals in central Florida, a place of building bridges across differences for people of all faith and non-faith worldviews, and an advocate for the truth that kindness and compassion are human potentials transcending faith and non-faith. Visible, active, contributing volunteers who live fulfilling lives of positive humanism negate harmful myths about morality and meaning being predicated on service to God.

As the secular demographic in America continues to rise, so does the need for relevant perspective-specific resources and communities to serve that population. One of the most-hated and misunderstood identities, those of non-faith face marginalization, discrimination, and bullying.  Sometimes subtle; often isolating, always harmful. Regional, state, and national resources are available to help.  And right here in Central Florida there are secular organizations providing support, hope, opportunity, and community for individuals of non-faith.  You are not alone.

 Join our journey.


The core values of Service, Gratitude, and Inclusiveness will guide BE. Orlando into the adventure of the next years.  We will continue to cultivate a connected community that fosters acceptance, inclusion, and positive living.   We hope to see you on the journey – join us!

  • Involvement opportunities – join us for volunteering, educational events, and partner events with other organizations in the secular network.
  • Leadership opportunities – BE part of the leadership team – host events, advise and steer our mission and services, or grow our partnerships.




Volunteers ROCK the menu at SafeHouse

August 10, 2016

The second Wednesday chef team had a great time preparing roasted chicken, potatoes, mushroom gravy and quinoa, salad, rolls, fruit tray, Doritos & dip tray, steamed veggies, and a VERY popular dessert of dirt cakes and cupcakes.

Thanks everyone!

We couldn’t help but notice that we only have one more month before we start the holiday dinner series – Oct (Halloween theme), November (Fall Festival), and the December holiday dinner.  Holidays already?  Bring it!



Volunteering at Ronald McDonald House

Posted 7/24/2016

BE. Orlando was joined by volunteers from the Central Florida Freethought Community and Secular Student Alliance at UCF on Saturday to team up and make a fantabulous lunch for those staying at the Ronald McDonald House at Florida Hospital.

IMG_20160723_112004877_HDRVolunteers started with a tour of the facility to view living & recreation areas and a vacant resident room.  We learned about the many different types of Ronald McDonald House services to families and that the organization is international (63 countries), with 358 Houses, 208 in-hospital family rooms, and 49 mobile units in addition to grants to non-profits helping children and a youth scholarship program. There are currently two Houses in Central Florida – and a new one will be opening on August 11th by Nemours at Lake Nona. (learn more HERE)

Volunteers David, Yusia, Wendy, Alex, Marcelo, Landon, and Julia invested two hours of their Saturday to uplift others by preparing a great lunch.

It was like a reality TV show, they said: there was a pile of ingredients and we had to use them to make something awesome. 

The “hot dog” menu they prepared included regular & veggie dogs, buns & condiments, roasted squash, sautéed broccoli & mushrooms, Parmesan mushroom couscous with avocado, a lentil hummus & sweet pepper platter, mac & cheese, sweet potato fries, field greens salad with veggies, beet & blue potato chips, and a min-cake dessert bar of fresh berries, papaya, dark chocolate, and yogurt.

THANK YOU to all of our volunteers and to the Ronald McDonald House for providing this opportunity!



The award of the day went to Alex, for his artistic presentation of the lentil hummus & sweet pepper platter.



Ronald McDonald House Global

Ronald McDonald House Charities of Central Florida

BE. Orlando Events – join us!

Families share their experience at the Ronald McDonald House of Central Florida:

Five-Year Member Survey Results

BE. members provided input on our group’s accomplishments for the past five years. Based on the number of surveys turned in, a small fund was sponsored and enough was raised to fund part of an upcoming meal serve at the Ronald McDonald House.

Read the full May 2016 group report [click here].

Choosing from our many focus areas, members indicated those that engaged their highest interest.  Four focus areas tied for most interest:

  • Environmental Issues
  • Encouraging STEM interest in at-risk youth
  • Separation of Church and State
  • Gratitude, Kindness, and Positive Living

Regarding our group values, goals, and mission, our members most closely identified with the core values of Service, Gratitude, and Inclusiveness.

Members suggested some great new events, including volunteering, civic-minded social events, and needs drives.

Specific volunteer interests included Save the Manatees, family-friendly park & beach cleanups, Rally for Target, mentoring and tutoring, Ronald McDonald House, and hosting a sporting event to combat homophobia in sports.

Needs drive suggestions included collecting classroom supplies for a STEM-focused charter school; pet food for seniors on a fixed income; donations for homeless veterans; blankets; and books.

Members were interested in social events such as monthly socials; LGBTQ+ book club or movie night; playing with shelter animals; scrabble; and a monthly dinner with a themed discussion.

Interested in helping us BE better?

There is a lot you can do!

Membership is free and open to the public.  We have leadership opportunities for active members including event hosting, LGBTQ+ advocacy, and marketing.

The more awesome people engaged in attending, providing, or guiding opportunities, the better we will BE.

Your involvement is invited and welcomed.  Contact BEOrlando@live.com for more information.



Reason Rally in 3 Weeks

Update 6/4/2016 – Thanks to everyone who is at Reason Rally today representing all secular Americans!

Reason Rally is only three weeks away! 

Those who support reason should plan to attend the 2016 Reason Rally in Washington D.C.  on June 4. Speakers, including leading scientists and well-known entertainers, will host the largest gathering of secular individuals in the nation to demonstrate the lobbying strength of those who support the separation of church and state, eradication of legislated faith-based discrimination against women and LGBTQ+ individuals, evidence-based educational curricula, and respect for the diversity of our American culture to include those of non-faith.

Want to go with a group? Members of our local Central Florida Freethought Community (CFFC) are attending together – join them!

What is it like?  This video from inspirational secular icon Seth Andrews of The Thinking Atheist is a must-see:



This initiative is a collaborative effort of major national secular organizations.  The Reason Rally gathering & celebration is on Saturday only, but there are activities over a four-day span to include door-to-door lobbying and a mini-conference if more involvement interests you.  Visit ReasonRally.org for more information.

Don’t wait for the 2020 Reason Rally – attend this one!

Get on the Bus!


Reason Rally Bus – Do you really want to try to park – and pay to park – near the Lincoln Memorial?  There is a national service collaborating with local operators and using technology (apps) to create a convenient and affordable way to attend the Rally. There are bus rally points all over the nation, and two in Florida – Orlando and Tampa. The bus will take you to Reason Rally and back.  Learn more about reserving your seat on the national Bus Rally site or on the Orlando/Tampa bus rally sign-up page.

The Orlando Rally Bus needs 39 more participants to confirm the bus – make your reservation today.  It leaves at 4:45  on June 3 from Festival Bay Mall and returns to the same place at 11:0o on Sunday, June 5th.  You would be at the rally from 9 a.m. – 7 p.m. on June 4th.  The cost is $235.00

Speakers & Entertainers Include…

Bill Nye, Carolyn Porco, Johnny Depp, Margaret Cho, Amber Heard, GZA, Raekwon, Method Man, Kappadonna, Mathematics, Killah Priest, Cara Santa Maria, Lawrence Krauss, Julia Sweeney, Penn Jillette, Shelley Segal, Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington, Liz Winstead, Dr. Anthony Pinn, James Randi, Kelly Carlin, Mark White, Annabelle Gurwitch, John Davidson, Ian Harris, Annie Laurie Gaylor, The Fab Four, Paul Provenza, Kameron, Yvette d’Entremont, Jensen, Victor Harris, Eugene Scott, Dan Barker, Maryam Namazie, Baba Brinkman, John de Lancie, Leighann Lord, David Silverman, Dr. Andrés Roeme, JT Eberhard, Todd Stiefel, Eddie Tabash, Robyn Blumner, Lyz Liddell



Mom’s Recipes

We had an amazing time at SafeHouse of Seminole last evening!  Every month we choose a theme for the dinner. Since this month’s  dinner was so close to Mothers’ Day, volunteers prepared their mom’s favorite recipes to share with the residents – and a few other fabulous yummies.  🙂

Thank you Esther, Alexander, Andrea, Andre, Sam, Karen, and Jess for investing your time, your hearts, and your family recipes to make a difference for people in our community!