Fellow Security

A World Safe for Changemaking

Social entrepreneurs are pushing the limits, challenging rigid social norms and disrupting hierarchical institutions around the world. However, social change is complicated and often dangerous.

Ashoka envisions a world in which everyone is a Changemaker. Creating a world that is safe for changemaking—to generate the conditions that make changemaking safe and to protect those who are paving the way for more changemakers—is fundamental to achieving our vision.

The Changemaker Security Initiative

“Together, we are far more than the sum of the parts. We are a community of mutual help and many, many forms of collaboration” -Bill Drayton

Over the past 35 years, numerous Ashoka Fellows have faced security threats or crises due to their work. Ashoka’s Changemaker Security initiative, established in 2005, helps equip Fellows working in socially and politically turbulent areas with the tools and networks to prevent and respond to emergencies. Ashoka launched the Security Initiative in order to mobilize the Global Ashoka Network to serve as a safety net for Fellows and other changemakers.

In Memoriam

Ashoka celebrates the lives and sacrifices of Chico Mendes, Sanjoy Ghose and Abdul Waheed Khan.All three were social entrepreneurs and Ashoka Fellows brutally murdered for their tireless commitment to positive social change: Chico, for his grassroots organizing of rubber tappers in the Amazon Basin; Sanjoy, for supporting peaceful citizen responsibility among young people in India, and Abdul, for teaching young girls and boys modern, universal education in Pakistan. To honor their achievements, Ashoka has set up endowments (https://www.ashoka.org/endowments) to support the election of more Ashoka Fellows. We celebrate and remember Chico, Sanjoy and Abdul, and all those changemakers across their lives who risk their lives to make a safer and more positive world.


Abdul Waheed Khan

Ashoka Fellow Abdul Waheed Khan (deceased)

How to Help Changemakers at Risk >>
Security Resources for Changemakers >>