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Simran

Simran Mulchandani

My Story

Simran is a serial entrepreneur pursuing excellence across investment banking, brand building, music, technology and sustainability. He is a founder at Generation Blue, Singapore - an innovation platform aimed at transforming Natural Capital into an investable asset class. GenBlue's mission is to set up systems, invest in transformative technologies and lighthouse natural capital projects that will achieve this goal. He was a Director at Lykke Corp, a Swiss Fintech company building a global marketplace for blockchain assets. Earlier, Simran completed his B.Sc. in Computer Science from Brown University and went on to work at J.P Morgan (New York and Singapore) before setting up and running blueFROG a live music venture based in Mumbai that achieved international acclaim. In 2014 he set up Mach One Associates (Mumbai and Singapore), a partnership focused on new initiatives for international brands using technology and music. He designed and executed a music and arts programme called Camlin Kids Power for Kokuyo Camlin (India) that aimed to educate children around social issues such as the Importance of Forests, Diversity and Mindfulness. Camlin Kids Power was the beginning of the journey that led to what Project Rangeet is today. Simran’s ambition is to establish the framework for children to have a chance to save their planet by encouraging a compassionate world in which nature and society are at peace

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Priyanks

Priyanka Seth Pandit

My Story

Priyanka Seth Pandit has a B.A. in History from Bryn Mawr College and an M.A. in Social Studies Education from Teachers College, Columbia University. Priyanka taught History and English for five years at the Chapin School, New York City. She completed her Music Together (preschool music) training programme in February 2005. In 2010 she received her Certification Level 1 as a Master Teacher from Music Together, Princeton. Priyanka also has certificates in Dalcroze eurhythmics from the Kauffman Centre in New York, as well as First Steps in Music for Preschool and Beyond from the Samuel Barber Graduate Institute at West Chester University. Priyanka founded the first Music Together programme in India in 2005 and has served over 7000 families in six different locations in Mumbai, till date.

Priyanka has learned, taught and played the Indian classical flute (bansuri) beginning in 1988, and has been instructed in western classical music from the age of four. She has trained and taught teachers of music and early childhood education in non-profit organisations such as the Akanksha Foundation and Muktangan Foundation. She has run a variety of music programmes and social initiative programmes for babies, preschoolers and elementary school students. Currently, she is working as the curriculum Director of Project Rangeet, a social initiative programme that teaches children about burning social causes, through the medium of art and music.

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Karishma

Karishma Menon

My Story

Karishma graduated from college in 2001 in Bombay with a B.A in English Literature. She worked as a documentary film maker in Bombay before moving to Mallorca for a year to work for acclaimed production company - Palma Pictures. During her stint with Palma Pictures - she worked on James Blunt’s music video - “You’re Beautiful”. Upon her return to Bombay, Karishma worked at boutique film production company Highlight Films as a Production Assistant.

She transitioned from there to blueFROG, a live music venture based in Bombay. She was the first employee of blueFROG and was involved in executing the launch of its flagship music club in Bombay which was later rated by the Independent (UK) as one of the top ten music venues in the world. In 2014, Karishma and Simran formed Mach One Associates and later Project Rangeet with Priyanka where she works on the confluence of music, design, education and technology.

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Story Simran

Every child has the right to be courageous

My wife, Renisha, and I raised our kids, Ishan and Samara, on a steady diet of Dr. Seuss. What we wanted most for our children was for them to be creative, crazy, courageous risk takers.

But this is often not possible. Our kids come from privilege. They can afford to take risks, fail, pick up, start again as long as they do it responsibly. This realization hit me in 2013 when I taught a class on English grammar to fourth graders in a government school in Mumbai. I was not quite prepared for how that day would affect me.

My class was a cross section of younger and older kids (aged 8 through 14); some differently abled children. And when I inquired why these kids were clubbed so randomly together I was told what I may not have wanted to hear – the girls (mainly) were being abused physically/mentally at home, so would lag behind in learning; some kids were sent to villages to help with farming – hence taken out of school to rejoin at a later date - deeply hurting their self-esteem. The kid who stole my heart was an intellectually challenged girl who had the most enthusiastic sparkle in her eyes, could not express herself at all, but you knew she had so much to say.

All these abilities and ages and sexes and emotional states were mixed up in an overburdened under resourced classroom - packaged, processed and shoved into a world that didn’t care what they wanted, dreamed about, cared or hoped for. And I recall thinking on my way home – these kids are just defeated at birth.

This is where the seed of the idea behind Project Rangeet began. It became non-negotiable for me to do something that would give every child the opportunity to be courageous: to try, to fail, to find their niche and awaken their inner superhero.

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Story Priyanka

Every child has the right to be compassionate

I happen to be born into a family that values diversity. People from four religions and three nationalities comprise my family and respect is expected. Then by virtue of my father's job we lived in a different country every three years of my life, and I moved through seven different schools. The compulsion of having to adjust periodically to different geographical, lingual, cultural environments compelled me to foster compassion, if only even for my own survival!

Music, art and drama (all of which I was extensively exposed to from a really young age), reinforced my comprehension of the world as diverse and borderless. My need to share this strong belief, and my experiences from my perspective, are what have given me so much joy and satisfaction as a mother, as a teacher and as a human being.

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Story Karishma

Every child has the right to be grateful

You will never hear me say that my school years were the best years of my life. People who say that excelled academically, fit a mould.

I excelled as well but in sport and art, things that ultimately didn't count for much in our schooling construct. So I hated school, still do. I shudder at the thought and my last day at school was the last day I stepped into my school. And that is not how it should be

I don't know that our school system is best for children. I'm still battling my 13 year old insecurities today. Because I couldn't do math and science, I was obviously stupid. Since one's self worth was dependent on their grades, mine was zero and I have to often remind myself even today that I'm no longer 13, I'm not stupid.

I see Project Rangeet as a ray of hope, as a way for kids (no matter their strengths) to belong, have fun, learn and be inspired. My hope is that they look forward to their classes and have lightbulb moments. There is more to learning than academics - I want kids to feel empowered, worthy and smart. Most of all I want them to feel like they matter.