Bay Area Friends of Tibet

Founding members of BAFOT in 1989

BAFoT's Mission The mission of the Bay Area Friends of Tibet is to study, promote interest in, and actively preserve Tibetan culture in all its aspects; to educate the general public in matters pertaining to Tibet and the Tibetan people; and to provide assistance to Tibetans. Former Bay Area Friends of Tibet (BAFoT) President Diane Hume once referred to BAFoT as "the mother redwood tree" in describing the off-shoots of Tibet Support Groups which have sprung up around the Bay Area as a result of work originally started while at BAFoT. BAFoT can point to its own success during the past 22 years by pointing to the success of these organizations whose leaders first worked with BAFoT, organizations including the Tibetan Association of Northern California (TANC), Tibet Justice Center, the Commitee of 100, and others. Some of the original founders of BAFoT have now become legendary in the Tibet movement, including Tenzing Sonam, son of Lhamo Tsering, Chief of Operations of the Mustang Resistance Force; Dr. Michael van Walt van Praag, former President of the Underrepresented Nations and People's Organization (UNPO); and many of the elected officers of TANC. BAFoT continues to support Tibetans while working closely with other Bay Area Tibetan groups. BAFoT is proud to also be a member of the International Tibet Support Network (ITSN). This group enhances our international cooperation on Tibetan issues.

Visit the BAFOT Projects Page

Support Chinese American Outreach Since 2003 BAFoT has aimed to follow His Holiness the Dalai Lama's guidance to attempt to bridge the gap in understanding that exists between the Chinese and the Tibetan peoples. Are you interested in joining our active and motivated cultural outreach committee? Please contact Giovanni Vassallo (415-409-6353) Educational Outreach BAFoT organizes special events that introduce hundreds of people to Tibetan issues. Tibet Day cultural fairs have been held annually, since 1984, in San Francisco, the East Bay, and Santa Cruz. Plans to extend Tibet Day into the North Bay are underway. BAFoT also sponsors film festivals,lectures, and performances by Tibetan artists. Volunteers distribute educational materials at various Bay Area events year-round. Grassroots Action BAFoT works with other Tibet support groups such as the Tibetan Association of Northern California (TANC) to organize activities on behalf of Tibet's struggle for human rights and self-determination, and takes part in events that promote Tibetan culture, such as the Pacifica Tibetan Arts Festival. BAFoT's urgent action network conducts letter-writing campaigns and notifies the media of Tibet news and local events. BAFoT newsletters provides the latest information on current Tibetan issues and suggests actions that individuals can take to address the crisis in Tibet. Work with the Tibetan Resettlement Project In the early 1990s, BAFoT facilitated the immigration of 60 Tibetans to the Bay Area. Since that time, BAFoT has helped these Tibetans to reunify with their families. With a dedicated group of volunteers, BAFoT continues to help the Tibetan community with employment and English skills. Please help us to help Tibetans in their struggle for self-determination and the preservation of their culture. You can support us today by becoming a member, by signing up to volunteer or by making a tax-deductible donation.