Voter registration deadlines are coming up so GET REGISTERED!

Civic and polit­i­cal par­tic­i­pa­tion are core val­ues here at SAALT. While its impor­tant to be engaged on a con­sis­tent basis, not just dur­ing elec­tion cycles, no one can deny that the act of vot­ing is one of the most mean­ing­ful expres­sions of demo­c­ra­t­ic par­tic­i­pa­tion. There’s been a lot of talk about this elec­tion, and there’s noth­ing wrong with get­ting swept up in the excite­ment of the pres­i­den­tial race.

If you need any addi­tion­al con­vinc­ing, check out this video:

SAALT briefing on South Asians in New Jersey covered in the New Jersey Star-Ledger

Check out a great arti­cle from the New Jer­sey Star Ledger about the Octo­ber 1st brief­ing on the South Asian com­mu­ni­ty in New Jer­sey. The brief­ing includ­ed Assem­bly­man Upen­dra Chivuku­la and Com­mis­sion­er of the New Jer­sey Depart­ment of Trans­porta­tion, Kris Kol­luri. The pan­el fea­tured speak­ers from the Sikh Coali­tion, Man­avi and CAIR-NJ and was mod­er­at­ed by SAALT Pol­i­cy Direc­tor, Priya Murthy. You can read the arti­cles here <http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2008/10/njs_growing_south_asian_commun.html>

To read SAALT resources about the South Asian com­mu­ni­ty in New Jer­sey, click here <http://www.saalt.org/pages/Local-Initiatives%3A-New-Jersey.html>

Watch a clip of Assem­bly­man Chivuku­la (the first South Asian to be elect­ed to the New Jer­sey state Assem­bly) speak­ing about the New Jer­sey South Asian com­mu­ni­ty. To his left is Kris Kol­luri, the Com­mis­sion­er of the New Jer­sey Depart­ment of Trans­porta­tion and to his right is Mark Mur­phy from the Fund for New Jer­sey. Mod­er­at­ing the dis­cus­sion is Deepa Iyer, Exec­u­tive Direc­tor of SAALT.

SAALT Oct. brief­ing in Tren­ton, NJ

The Vice Presidential debate is tonight!

So the first (and only) Vice Pres­i­den­tial debate is tak­ing place tonight. There’s been a lot of chat­ter, in the blo­gos­phere, the main­stream media and, undoubt­ed­ly, in more than a few per­son­al con­ver­sa­tions, about the impor­tance of this debate. Con­sid­er­ing that this is the only time we will be able to see Sen. Joseph Biden and Gov. Sarah Palin face off, I am hop­ing that peo­ple tune in. The debate will be mod­er­at­ed by Gwen Ifill, who mod­er­ates Wash­ing­ton Week and is a senior cor­re­spon­dent on New­sHour with Jim Lehrer. Ifill also mod­er­at­ed the 2004 debate between Dick Cheney and John Edwards in 2004. I think its going to be an excit­ing two hours and I hope every­one tunes into all the major chan­nels at 9pm EST.

 

Are you ready to “Be the Change” on Saturday, October 4th?

SAALT is gear­ing up for Be the Change 2008 and we want­ed to thank all of our plan­ning teams and local vol­un­teers who have worked so hard over the past few months to plan for this nation­al day of ser­vice! Be the Change, for­mer­ly known as the Nation­al Gand­hi Day of Ser­vice, is coor­di­nat­ed by SAALT along with vol­un­teers around the coun­try. This year, we are excit­ed that the event will be held in over 60 cities and cam­pus­es! You can find a full list of the cities and cam­pus­es here.This year’s theme for Be the Change is “Sol­i­dar­i­ty in Ser­vice” and we want to encour­age all of our vol­un­teers to keep this theme in mind when they are vol­un­teer­ing this year. This theme reflects the way com­mu­ni­ty ser­vice can build coali­tions, strength­en rela­tion­ships, and bring about sol­i­dar­i­ty among peo­ple of dif­fer­ent back­grounds.

Exam­ples of ser­vice sites this year include:

Books to Pris­ons: Vol­un­teers will be read­ing let­ters from pris­on­ers, select­ing books that match their request, and pack­ag­ing the books to send the pris­on­ers (Wash­ing­ton DC)

Hands on Atlanta Vol­un­teers will be build­ing wheel­chair ramps, men­tor­ing indi­vid­u­als in com­put­er skills, and more. (Atlanta)

Ronald McDon­ald House: Vol­un­teers will pre­pare a meal for, and serve fam­i­lies whose chil­dren are seri­ous­ly ill and receiv­ing treat­ment at near­by hos­pi­tals. (San Fran­cis­co)

Kids Enjoy Exer­cise Now (KEEN): Vol­un­teers will be con­duct­ing recre­ation­al activ­i­ties for kids in the pro­gram who have are men­tal­ly or phys­i­cal­ly chal­lenged. (New York City)

Boston Health­care for the Home­less: Vol­un­teers will be

 

work­ing with patients by lead­ing activ­i­ties like games, crafts, enter­tain­ment, etc.These are just a mere few ser­vice sites that Be the Change vol­un­teers will be par­tic­i­pat­ing in this year. Stay tuned for an update about how Be the Change went and how you can con­tin­ue your com­mu­ni­ty involve­ment.