2017-2019 Secular Hub Strategic Plan
Community * Altruism * Reason * Education
A vibrant community where atheists, agnostics, humanists, and their families can meet, support each other, have fun, and explore ethics, science, and the human condition. We seek to establish a positive presence that contributes to the society at large.
To support and build up the secular community by providing a physical space and a broad range of activities that encourage learning, critical thinking, altruism, and fellowship.
Who We Are
Formed in February 2013 as a chapter of the American Humanist Association, the Secular Hub started out as a center for atheist and other secular groups in the Denver Metro Area. It has since evolved into a community of its own, becoming the largest, member-run secular organization in Colorado. It’s a friendly place where non-believers find camaraderie, learn, and give back to the community. Its members organize educational events, social activities, and volunteer opportunities.
Hub activities embody our values of community, altruism, reason, and education, including:
The Hub also continues to build and unite the community of secular organizations across the front range through joint programming with partner groups and providing use of its space to them for events and meetings.
The Secular Hub is growing fast. In 2016, a goal was set to increase membership to 240 members. In 2017, the Hub surpassed that goal by adding on nearly 100 members. This growth was on top of membership dues being increased from a minimum of $45/year to $60/year. There are currently five membership levels, with the highest being $100/month.
The Hub is governed by an elected board of seven members. Each board member is elected for a two-year term and can serve multiple terms if elected. The Hub is 100% volunteer run and various committees help plan and execute events, outreach, and service.
The Hub maintains itself through membership dues and paid-events. The paid-events are usually for well-known atheist speakers, with members paying a discounted rate. The Hub maintains between $13,000 to $14,000 in its bank account on average from month to month.
Previous Fiscal Year Income and Expenses
2016-2017 Secular Hub Expenses
Our Goals for 2017-2019
GOAL 1: Raise funds to achieve a long-term use of a bigger space either through a long term lease or purchasing a property
Our membership and needs have outgrown the Hub’s current 1,700 square feet of space at 3100 Downing Street. The demand from Secular Hub groups and affiliated organizations for space means we often turn down requests for activities because the calendar is fully booked. A bigger space would allow for multiple activities to occur for multiple groups, including our affiliates and allied groups. Furthermore, since the current location only holds 90 people, we reach capacity quickly when we hold events for well-known speakers and therefore must end ticket-sales early and turn people away at the door.
Our current rent and utilities monthly cost is $1,800 and is projected to increase to $2,004 in 2018, $2,065 in 2019, and $2,127 in 2020. Our new lease states that we can end the lease with 60 days notice before the end of the year if we find a new location. To get an idea of the cost, renting a new space with 2,400 square feet would be $3,500 a month, a $1,500 increase, but our square footage needs will be more. Ideally, the Hub could raise enough money to buy a building, which could cost $1,000,000 or more, depending on the size and property. A recent space for purchase in Denver that met our needs at 12,000 square feet cost $1,250,000.
The building/space we are looking for would contain a large hall that could seat 200+ people (with the ability to split into smaller sections), a large parking lot, kitchen, 2 restrooms, storage space, and a minimum of 4 rooms (1 office space, 1 conference room for 20 people, 1 children’s room, 1 meeting room).
GOAL 2: Grow the family demographic in our membership; become more receptive to families to help build community
The Hub currently does not have a major family component and members want to change that. There is a small but growing number of members with families and we want to support them to create more family-oriented programming.
GOAL 3: Expand participation from members on committees and during events
For the first several years of the Hub, the board was an active board that helped run the committees and daily operations. We are now in a transition phase to a more managerial board style and the current board has less involvement in committees than before. Our goal is to empower committees by freeing them from direct board management and in the process recruit more members to participate and take ownership over committees and Hub events.
GOAL 4: Better-define our relationship with affiliates and expand cooperation with other secular groups for our mutual benefit
The Secular Hub hosts many groups for their meetings and events. When the Hub first started, a major reason was so affiliated atheist and secular groups would have a space to meet. Since then, the Hub has evolved into its own group and the limited space of the Hub has become more expensive, along with the need to find a bigger location. There is need for affiliates to contribute financially under a formal relationship that is mutually agreed to.
Hub Groups and Projects:
Secular Hub Podcast, Secular Volunteer Corps, Secular Sisterhood
Freedom From Religion Foundation, Recovering From Religion, Life Ring, Freethinkers in AA, Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests, Humanists of Colorado, Atheists Helping the Homeless
Sunday Assembly, Jefferson Humanists, Pikes Peak Atheists, Boulder Atheists
GOAL 5: Rewrite Secular Hub Bylaws to reflect the new state of the Hub
The Hub Bylaws were written when the Hub was primarily being used as a space for other groups with some of its own activities. Now that the Hub has evolved into an organization that drives its own programming and events, a new set of bylaws are needed that clarify and strengthen its status as a member-run organization.