Agastya Conclave Celebrates Achievements, Looks Toward the Future
On January 28, a hundred or so of Agastya's friends and supporters - old and new - came together to celebrate the foundation's achievements and to discuss ongoing plans for its future growth.
Before the formal program began, there was ample time to mix and mingle, and the room was alive with warm greetings, laughter, and animated conversation. Founders and long-time volunteers caught up on things, and met many new friends of Agastya. The atmosphere was convivial and relaxed, like a school reunion or a family gathering - and that was no coincidence. Ramji and Monica Raghavan often speak of "the family of Agastya," the many people - from all walks of life - who are drawn together by a shared commitment to the foundation's central mission: to spark creativity in India's rural children.
The program featured short presentations on the current state of Agastya's efforts. Ramji welcomed one and all to the conclave and took time to honour the memory of three Agastya founders whose work was essential to the success of the organization:
- Dr. P.K. Iyengar, former Chairman of the Indian Atomic Energy Commission, who provided scientific expertise and advice in shaping Agastya's program;
- Dr. Balasundaram, a key adviser who had been the principal of Rishi Valley School, the institution that inspired Agastya's creation; and
- Mr. K.V. Raghavan, Ramji's father, the former chairman of Engineers India Limited, who was instrumental in drawing together the top scientists and engineers that formed the core of Agastya's team.
Ramji went on to discuss the continued growth of Agastya in its home base of south India, as well as its expansion into new areas of the country, further north. Subsequent presenters addressed Agastya's recent collaborations with state and national education officials, and with several universities, here and abroad. Several guests rose to commend the foundation on its achievements thus far, and to express their enthusiastic support for Agastya's future endeavours. The presentations finished to warm applause, and were followed by a buffet dinner.