The Humanist Alliance Philippines, International (HAPI) has come a long way since its inception in December 2013 by Marissa Torres Langseth (known to her peers as Ms. M) and colleagues.
HAPI was established with the goal of gathering humanists from the Philippines and abroad under one banner, to serve as stewards and role models for the community. The organization aims to promote good will and camaraderie between people of different beliefs and cultural backgrounds as well as inspire and cultivate social responsibility and environmental awareness across various sectors of society.
Since its inception, HAPI has accomplished multiple milestones in pursuit of its ambition:
- The launch of HAPI libraries (Feb 2014), which was initially furnished with books that were generously donated by Marissa Torres Langseth, David E. Bussiere, and peers;
- Established affiliation with Atheist Alliance International (AAI), International Humanist and Ethical Union (IHEU), and International Humanist Ethical Youth Organization (IHEYO) Be Secular;
- Donated computer sets for the kids that frequent the HAPI Library, courtesy of Marissa Torres Langseth;
- The creation of new HAPI Libraries: Ichill Theater Cafe, HAPI Library via HAPI-Cebu and Bohol Humanist Alliance Philippines;
- The creation of HAPI Kids Nutrition Campaign in Alabang, which is an ongoing monthly initiative by Jamie Del Rosario Martinez
- The launch of Humanist Alliance Philippines, International official merchandise, which includes button pins, professional pins, patches, and mugs;
- HAPI Trees – initiated in Sept 2015 by Jennifer C. Gutierrez, HAPI Executive Director;
- The first HAPI General Assembly, which was held in Cebu City in February 2016;
- HAPI Representation in IHEYO Asian Humanism in Singapore and Taiwan by Danielle Hill;
- The HAPI Literacy project, which was started in May 2016 by Jahziel Tayco Ferrer;
- The launch of “Rekindle” by the HAPI-Bacolod Chapter;
- The inauguration of HAPI Compre, a student lead society, which is a spin-off of HAPI Cebu and Bohol Humanist Alliance, Philippines;
- The appointment of Marissa Torres Langseth as a member of the Board of Directors of the Godless Grace Foundation, based inb NYC, USA, in January 2016;
- The depiction of Marissa Torres Langseth’s activism in the book “Godless Grace: How Nonbelievers Make the World Safer” in February 2016 as well as in “Personal Paths to Humanism Volume 1,” released in May 2016 at the American Humanist Association convention in Chicago, IL;
- The recognition of Jennifer C. Gutierrez as the Humanist Innovator of 2015 by the Foundation Beyond Belief, USA in June 2016;
- HAPI Nest and Farm, started in July 2016 by the HAPI Leadership, which is designed to be an income-generating project for the HAPI Kids.
HAPI is currently working on the publication of the first HAPI book, under the auspices of Alex Wisner, Bryan Valentino and Jamie Del Rosario Martinez. At the present time, this HAPI book is in the printing press.
An upcoming HAPI convention in cooperation with IHEYO is also in the works, and is set to take place in Manila from June 10 to June 11, 2017.
HAPI’s current Overall Chairperson, Ms. M, is an accomplished Adult Nurse Practitioner from the United Health Group and was a pioneering organizer in the creation of two prominent SEC-registered secularist organizations in the Philippines, namely the Philippine Atheists and Agnostics Society and Humanist Alliance Philippines, International. She is an active secularist and is vocal about social issues and the welfare of other people regardless of religious or political affiliation. She retired from professional practice in October 2015 and has remained committed in her passion for philanthropy, through HAPI and other secular societies in the USA in which she is also affiliated.
She is set to become HAPI Chairwoman Emeritus in January 2017, The Humanist Alliance Philippines, International Founder’s Corner and will pass the title of Overall Chairperson to HAPI’s Board of Trustees who are currently voting for the next Chairperson.
By Michael Madriaga