Important Update: Be the Change

Be the Change is an annual national day of service coordinated to inspire and foster civic engagement and stronger communities through volunteerism and community service. Every year thousands of participants across the country collectively contribute numerous hours of community service in the spirit of Mahatma Gandhi’s challenge to “be the change you wish to see in the world.” 

Through a coordinated effort on a single day (around Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday), teams across the country identify community sites to volunteer for the day.

A Be the Change Update from SAALT

As many of our local partners begin planning their Be the Change national day of service events, SAALT announces we will no longer serve as the effort’s national coordinator.  To encourage local leadership among grassroots South Asian organizations, SAALT will no longer provide ongoing technical assistance, marketing, volunteer outreach, sponsorship, and T-shirt distribution for Be The Change local planning teams as in years past. Historically, Be the Change has been an opportunity for South Asian Americans and their allies to engage in collective public service activities that lead to deeper civic engagement, collaboration, and unity in localized and national spaces. Participants nationwide have contributed thousands of hours of community service annually in the spirit of Mahatma Gandhi’s famous quote, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”

Be the Change generally occurs on the first Saturday in October to honor Mahatma Gandhi and other South Asian leaders who have dedicated their lives to public service. SAALT strongly encourages individuals, community organizations, and college campuses across the country to continue engaging in local civic and volunteer projects by participating in or coordinating a Be the Change event in their communities. To support that engagement, SAALT is providing an extensive guide to coordinating Be the Change events to any and all interested individuals via our website. SAALT’s step-by-step guide also includes information on how to reach out to local sponsors for potential event related expenses.

Download the SAALT Be the Change Planning Guide

Be the change presents an opportunity to…

Be Connected: Develop skills, build relationships, and strengthen your community through service.
Be Engaged
: Join South Asian advocates, activists, students, and allies from your area and across the U.S. to make a difference in your community.
Be Inspired: Learn from energizing community leaders and peers and inspire others to be agents of change.


“Be The Change [BTC] was a great opportunity to give back, to do good together, to rise above our own needs and busy schedules and dedicate a few hours in the service of others…To know that our effort, however small, would maybe impact a life in some way was a humbling experience. We also enjoyed meeting others who were there for similar reasons. We will be back for Be the Change in years to come.”

Tara , Be the Change – Austin, TX