Our Story

Dalit Freedom Network was created as the result of a pivotal pilgrimage to New Delhi, India, in November of 2001.

That day, thousands of Dalit “untouchables” stood up for their people, the 250 million across India who are shackled and degraded by a modern-day caste system. For the first time, the Dalits cried out saying, “Give us freedom from the bondage of discrimination. Give our children the opportunity to determine their own identity and destiny.”

DFN answered that call in 2002 with a vision to end the oppression of the Dalit people.

While many movements in India have come and gone, none have significantly altered the social structure for a group that makes up a quarter of India’s population.

Dalit Freedom Network works to change that.

Since 2001, Dr. Joseph D’Souza, international president and founder of Dalit Freedom Network, has advocated for those who have no voice.

D’Souza leads with particular interest in the dignity of humanity, not only within DFN, but also in organizations across India and other nations. He has spoken at human rights conferences, been a delegate for parliamentary meetings in Europe, and worked with Congressional leaders in the United States. Under Dr. D’Souza’s leadership, more than 25 DFN and partner offices have opened up in 7 countries, all with the united vision of transforming villages and empowering the Dalit people.

At Dalit Freedom Network, we know there is immeasurable value in partnering with individuals and groups that share our commitment to the Dalit people.

We work with a variety of organizations to extend our impact, establish accountability, and assemble additional resources. Our long-standing partners in India make up an expansive network that provides the expertise and influence necessary to create thriving programs in Dalit communities across India.

Dalit Freedom Network USA is part of an international alliance that is inter-racial, inter-caste and international, working together to contribute to the unity, integrity and greatness of India.