I know there is a lot of talk about organizations that seem to be failing when it comes to caring about minorities and the underprivileged but I’d like to draw some attention to an organization that is doing something good that you can get involved with and support.
Atheist Alliance International has a program that hopes to teach critical thinking skills to the children of Cambodia and you can help! It’s the Critical Thinking and Secular Ethics in Cambodia project.
The mission of the project is not to teach children what to think but how to think.
In their words:
If we teach children everything we know, their knowledge is limited to ours. If we teach children to think, their knowledge is limitless.
At The Cambodian Children’s Trust (CCT) we strive to give vulnerable Cambodian children the best chance at leading a happy, fulfilling, and successful life. Succeeding in life depends on our ability to solve the problems we encounter along the way.
Theravada Buddhism is (supposedly) practiced by around 95% of the Cambodian population. In reality however, behind the doors of Khmer Temples there lies belief in superstitions, with rituals, spirits, ghosts, gods, and sorcerers, which, it can be argued, injects immeasurable stress and fear into the lives of most Cambodians. In a country where corruption is widespread and 40% of the population live below the poverty line, it is vital that Cambodia’s children, its future leaders learn how to think for themselves, how to reason and how to be ethical and moral citizens. The future of Cambodia depends on it.
We will teach them to question. We will show them how to work out what is ethical or unethical (or somewhere in between). We will teach them to be able to identify flaws in arguments. We will educate them about the major religions and, with the skills they develop in this course, enable them to make up their own minds.
Studying ethics and philosophy will give children skills to use good thinking as the guide by which they live their lives.
Great work Atheist Alliance International! We hope other organizations will follow your lead and we hope this project proves to be a success.