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In Conversation With Latha Krishnan

Ranjani Saigal

Could you tell us a little about your work? 

I am a software engineer at Dell EMC. Been here for quite a while and still going! I have always loved problem solving so, you can say, I enjoy my work. Of course, like all working women, constantly struggle with the conundrum of work life balance

How did you get involved with Ekal Vidyalaya? 

I actually got involved with Ekal Vidyalaya through my daughter, Nandini Seetharaman. We were both introduced to the organization by Dr. Subra Dravida four+ years ago when she was looking for community service options as a rising freshman in high school. Nandini created and ran the Ekal Writing Competition, and that is when I got to learn and view Ekal in detail. Little did I know that Ekal would become an integral part of my life! A chance conversation with Dr. Subra Dravida translated into a life morphing experience (for the best) for me!

Could you describe your visit to the Ekal Villages? 

Completely life-changing. I was born and raised in Delhi, and until now, I had never been exposed to rural India. Being able to actually see the real village setting and meet the people there truly demonstrated not only the amazing impact Ekal has made, but also the amount of work that still has to be done. They invited me to eat in their homes, and I am still in awe of their hospitality, joy, and humility.

What motivated you to take on the role of Vice President for Ekal Vidyalaya Foundation of Ekal New England Chapter? 

Ekal Vidyalaya has been an amazing home for me these past few years. I have been able to unite with a family of like-minded people who all support a common goal: supporting the much-needed development of rural India. I decided it was time for me to become more deeply involved. I'm very honored to be named the Vice President for the Ekal Vidyalaya New England Chapter!

Could you describe the activities of Ekal New England? 

Ekal New England focuses on raising money and awareness for Ekal Vidyalaya. We organize and host a variety of events through the year, ranging from math bees and art workshops to the Power of Education forum, to fundraise for the organization. 

Why should people support Ekal? 

Ekal Vidyalaya is the only organization I have come across that has such a logical and systematic approach to solving such a big and important issue. The scalability of the model--just a dollar a day, only $365 to fund a school for a year--along with the transparency and lack of overheads just make Ekal a very trustworthy cause. Ekal truly fosters holistic community development, from educating the village children to teaching women to be tailors, and it is a most worthy cause to support. The holistic and logical development of rural India is key to India’s success.

What opportunities do you have for youth participation in Ekal ? 

Ekal Youth Leaders are kids or teenagers with a passion to help. Throughout the year, we help EYLs put together events to raise money for Ekal Vidyalaya. Some examples in 2018 are the Ekal Math Bee by Karthik Seetharaman and the Ekal Robotics Workshop by Akash Kumar. New EYLs are always welcome to join!

Any special message for our readers? 

Thank you so much for supporting me as I enter this new chapter in my Ekal journey! Come join the Ekal family and together we can make a difference in rural India. As my friends in Jharkhand would say, Jai Ram jiki!

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