Who we are

Change and Be Changed is a charitable group of passionate Malawian and North American educators and community workers bridging Malawi, the “Warm Heart of Africa,” with North America, the “New World”. Change and Be Changed  is headed by Drs. Thomas and Elisabeth Hangartner, volunteers in Northern Malawi since 2006, and an international group of friends and supporters of education in Northern Malawi. This rather isolated area of Malawi is among the poorest parts of the country. Many students are not able to attend school due to dire poverty. Change and Be Changed is a small charity registered in the United States with the Ohio Secretary of State. 501(c)(3)status is pending.

Change and Be Changed wants to reach out to those who are stranded on the roadside of the secondary (high school) and university (college) education system by funding scholarships for young Northern Malawians in existing high schools and colleges located in all three districts of Malawi.

Meet our Team

Douglas: Director of Future Planning for the Child (FPC) and right hand of Change and Be Changed in Malawi; a true bootstrapper, even before he could afford boots; liberated from confining subsistence into unpretentious existence; keen observer of all and sundry in need of support; tireless community improver, upgrader, restorer, encourager, booster, shaker and enhancer, reaching out within and beyond the “Warm Heart of Africa.”

Elisabeth: Volunteering in early childhood education at Lusubilo Community-Based Orphan Programme based in Karonga, Northern Malawi, from 2006-09, now at the Karonga-based NGO Future Planning for the Child as grant writer, fundraiser and compassionate listener to and supporter of young people who lack the basics to attend high school and college; professional and volunteer work on three continents in humble places overpopulated by the incarcerated, the homeless, the terminally ill, the destitute, the forgotten and forsaken; committed to those in need through advocacy, advancement and assistance; retired in 2006 and, ever since, commuter between North America and Africa (Malawi); word painter of Malawian narratives, both emerging and of ancient times.

Thomas: Elisabeth’s spouse; moral and material supporter of Elisabeth’s humanitarian missions in Malawi; educator from the heart and professor and department head of Biomedical, Industrial & Human Factors Engineering at Wright State University (WSU), Dayton, Ohio; enthusiastic facilitator of WSU’s Malawi Student Ambassador Program; soon-to-be retired; lending his hands and talents to equipping poor, rural hospitals in Northern Malawi with basic medical equipment, teaching local hospital staff how to safely use the new equipment and assisting with renovations in and around mission hospitals.


Nimfa and Jack: Dear American/Asian friends of Thomas and Elisabeth; unbiased, endlessly supportive and imaginative dreamers and doers of world peace and social justice; also retired – Nimfa from city planning in Xenia, Ohio, Jack, many years ago, from the Peace Corps (in the Philippines), more recently from teaching computer technology; both busier than ever, planning and organizing fundraisers, assisting with grant-writing; winning new friends for Northern Malawi and much more…

Chris and Dan: Chris, a  retired nurse and good Samaritan of the old-fashioned type and Dan, a retired life-long educator of students with disabilities; two tireless contributors to good causes far and near; unassuming background volunteers for Malawi; active in promotion, fundraising, donor relations and special events for the benefit of Change and Be Changed; creative, imaginative and available on a moment’s notice; great to have on board