Serve the Planet 2016: 'Love for Animals'

What is Serve the Planet?

Serve the Planet is a global youth-led service initiative that started in 2013. It is undertaken to celebrate Bhagawan Baba's Avatar Declaration Day. All overseas Sathya Sai Organisations are committed to carrying out this project under the direction of Prasanthi Council, as a sacred offering on this auspicious day.

On the 20th October 1940, Bhagawan Baba, out of His infinite love and compassion, announced His Avatar to the world. He declared that the purpose of His Advent and Mission was the transformation of mankind through love. Throughout the 85 years of His Sojourn on earth, He was engaged in this Mission of Love through selfless service to humanity. In fact, His central message of "Love All, Serve All" has become a guiding principle to millions of devotees around the world in their own spiritual journeys.

"The core of the spiritual discipline of service is to see everyone as yourself and yourself in everyone. You are not doing service to others, you are doing service to yourselves, to the God in you who is equally present in all" - Sathya Sai Baba 21/11/1981.

What will the UK being doing this year?

The global theme for Serve the Planet theme in 2016 is "Love for Animals". There will be four distinct aspects to this year’s initiative that will come together on the 22nd October. The four aspects are:

    1. Linking with the RSPCA and ‘Pet Refuge’ providing a pet food items and toys to animals in need.
    2. Raising awareness at Sai Centres through presentations on the spiritual basis of Animal Welfare. Study Circles on related topics will be conducted at our Sai centres throughout the year following this.
    3. 3. Continuing participation in service at Trussell trust foodbanks and Refuge UK (charity for women and children) so as to build on our partnerships, and share our love with those they serve.
    4. Joining for a prayer meeting for the welfare of all animals on 22nd October.
The various items lovingly collected by fellow devotees- such as food, toys, blankets etc for animals and pets, as well as other items for foodbanks and Refuge- will be loving offered on 22nd October at the Sai Vandana National Gratitude Day in London. Other regional collections will also be organised across the country on this day.

A recap of Serve the Planet Activities in the UK so far...

STP 2013: Feed the needy

The Serve the Planet global theme for 2013 was "Feed the needy". We worked alongside Trussell Trust Food Banks, who provide emergency food, supplies and support to anyone in crisis throughout the UK. In total 4.5 tonnes of food was donated by UK devotees to various food banks across the country. Trussell Trust members also attended and spoke at our National Programmes. A Laksharchana was conducted on 20th October itself to pray for all those suffering in the world, reciting the Divine name 100,000 times.

STP 2014: Children are our future

In 2014, the theme for Serve the Planet was "Children are our future". UK devotees took the privilege to support the work of Refuge UK, a leading UK Charity that provide a range of services to women and children who are experiencing domestic abuse. With the spontaneous and selfless love of devotees, we were able to offer 332 activity packs to Refuge at various collection points across the UK.

STP 2015: Human Values and nation building

In 2015 the Serve the Planet theme was "Human Values for Nation Building". This was a blessed opportunity to build upon and consolidate our existing relationships with both the Trussell Trust and Refuge UK. Sai devotees from across UK undertook a ‘Walk with Values’ programme in Leicester to raise awareness of the need to practise and uphold human values in our daily lives.

STP 2016: Love for Animals

Let us all once again come together in the spirit of unity this year, and share our love with our fellow beings, animals, in line with this year’s theme, “Love for Animals”. Please find the specific list of items that are needed:

  • for animals as identified by RSPCA and ‘Pet Refuge’ here

  • for Refuge UK here

  • and for Foodbanks here
  • Please contact your Centre Youth/ Service Coordinator or your Centre President for further details. You can also email servetheplanet@srisathyasai.org.uk.

    We pray to our beloved Swami to guide us all, and accept our humble offerings as the Indweller in all beings. Samastha Lokah Sukhino Bhavanthu (May all the beings in all the worlds be happy).

    Nishal Govindji-Bhatt,
    On behalf of 'Serve The Planet' - Team UK