She commenced with her very own concert during the launch in 2009 and subsequently has sung and organized music concerts in corporation schools and senior citizen homes, where Carnatic music has not really touched the crevices. The audience in these schools and homes have never been exposed to such a divine experience.
What made 2012 more unique was that the audience was even more different. Sudha sang at the Puzhal Prison for over 300 inmates on 6 October, 2012. While the response from these hardened masters was overwhelming, endorsing the fact that music has no boundaries, barriers or limitations and can pierce the most hardened surfaces in the most gentle manner, Sudha’s concert was a shining example of the destination her ethereal music had taken her to in this week of October, 2012, the Joy of Giving Week. The emotional outbursts of happiness and joy were visible in the faces that listened to her music in such a disciplined manner, responding to each of her notes soaked in divinity, immersing them and giving them an experience they may never have had the opportunity to be exposed to.
Music is always the universal panacea. Sudha can still never completely describe what this concert has done to her being…a fulfillment of sorts of her musical mission.
(Click here to read )
(Click here to read )
“Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.”
– Ralph Waldo Emerson
Sahaay 2011, with Honourable Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, Former President of India being the Chief Guest, was a dream that came true.
Sudha had worked with great focus all through the year of 2011, identifying the causes associated with children, finalizing on the beneficiaries and setting out to seek funds from all the compassionate souls that she came across. It was a decision made deep within that she somehow must work on getting Dr. Kalam to be present and hand over the donations to the beneficiaries. And the universe conspired. With persistence and pursuance, it happened and the day dawned bright and clear to leave an imprint in the history of Samudhaaya Foundation as one unforgettable occasion!
Malavika Ragunathan, daughter of Shri M.C. Ragunathan and Smt. Sudha Ragunathan was the MC for the evening, ably structuring and managing the flow of events with precision. A crisp function, timed one hour, preceded by a magic show by SAC Vasanth for the children, set the pace for the evening. The stage was bedecked with jewels….of humility, compassion, commitment, knowledge and generosity. Yes, this was a reflection of the occupants on the dais – the Chief Guest, Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, Shri N. Gopalaswamy, Shri M Murali, Smt. Sudha Ragunathan and Shri M.C. Ragunathan.
The evening began at 5:00 pm with Magician SAC Vasanth delighting the children and taking the audience to raptures. The children from Prema Vaasam, Sri Arunodayam and Clarke School for the Deaf were all smiles watching Vasanth’s show.
The official function began at 6:00 pm with the Chief Guests seated on the dais and a welcome speech by Sudha Ragunathan. Sudha spelt out the purpose of the evening, the way the thought processes came about and the relentless pursuance to collect funds for the identified beneficiaries. Focussed on her mission and a firm conviction that she will have the august presence of Dr. Kalam for the event, Sudha was grateful for his acceptance and sought his blessings for the Foundation and for those deserving children who are the future of the nation.
A cheque of Rs. 20 lakhs to Sri Ramachandra Hospital for the underprivileged cancer afflicted children was handed over to Dr. Julius Xavier Scott, Associate Professor and Senior Consultant at the Department of Paediatric Haematology and Oncology Unit.
Indra, first student of Prema Vaasam received the cheque for Rs. 20 lakhs, on behalf of Mr. Selvyn Roy, Founder of the Home.
The Saadhana Award for Excellence is a token of recognition that honours individuals who have visibly impacted society with their contribution and talent in an exemplary manner. Mr. M. Murali of Sri Krishna Sweets is the recipient of the Saadhana Award for Excellence in 2011. Over and above his presence and stature in the food business, Mr. Murali plays a major role in spreading art and culture and is a great philanthropist with numerous projects for the needy and underprivileged, to his credit.
His Excellency, Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, in his speech, described corruption and moral turpitude as major challenges that threaten economic progress and the dream of India joining the league of developed nations by 2020.
It’s a ‘What can I take?’ attitude that seems to have gripped the country. And that immediately and urgently needs to be replaced with ‘What can I give?’ He used the occasion to request artistes to devote at least 10 per cent of their time to spread the mission of music and inject humaneness into people. He highlighted performances given by Sudha Ragunathan in schools run by Chennai Corporation and old age homes as acts worthy of being emulated.
“Through our individual efforts and contributions, we must strive to create a compassionate society,” were his closing words.
Former Chief Election Commissioner N. Gopalaswami, quoting from the Tirukkural, termed philanthropic acts as ‘life’s ornaments’.
In her concluding speech, Sudha could not express enough her gratitude to the Chief Guests and all those donors who reached out to support and make this evening happen, enriching the quality of life for those afflicted and underprivileged deserving children.
And we move on…to the next phase…in continued consciousness of the philosophy of ‘what can I give?’
Links with information and pictures of the event
Samudhaaya foundation’s mission
‘Music for the Soul’ is a program where Padmashri Sudha Ragunathan, Founder and Managing Trustee of Samudhaaya Foundations takes music to Corporation Schools, Orphanages and Old Age Homes. This program will be flagged off during the Joy of Giving week with Padmashri Sudha Ragunathan’s concert at Vishranthi. Supporting this mission are a group of younger musicians – Vidya Kalyanaraman, Amritha Murali, Bharath Sundar, Sriranjani Santhanagopalan and Deepika V.
Below is the schedule of events
|07-10-2011||04:30 pm||Padmashri Sudha Ragunathan||Vishranthi Old Age Home, Palavakkam, Chennai 600 041|
|08-10-2011||Morning||Amritha Murali||Sevalaya, Kasuva Village, Pakkam PO, Near Thiruninravur 602 024|
|July||Evening||Vidya Kalyanaraman||Arumbugal Aalayam, Plot No:44, D.No.12, 2nd Main Road, Purushothaman Nagar, Chrompet, Chennai 600 044|
|10-10-2011||10:30 am||Padmashri Sudha Ragunathan||Corporation School, Tiruvanmiyur|
|11-10-2011||10:30 am||Padmashri Sudha Ragunathan||Interacts with inmates of Obul Reddy Old Age Home at Hotel Raj Palace|
|02:00 pm||Vidya Kalyanaraman||Corporation School, Tiruvotriyur|
|02:00 pm||Amritha Murali||Corporation School, Kolathur|
|02:00 pm||Bharath Sundar||Corporation School, Madhavaram|
|02:00 pm||Deepika V||Corporation School,Purasaiwalkam|
|12-10-2011||Sriranjani Santhanagopalan||Child Helpline, Shenoy Nagar|
Trustees: M.C.Ragunathan M.C. Srikanth P.B.R.Viswanathan
‘Let no one ever come to you without leaving better and happier. Be the living expression of God’s kindness: kindness in your face,kindness in your eyes, kindness in your smile.’ – Mother Teresa.
For over 12 years, Samudhaaya Foundation has lent a helping hand to combat tragedies of epic proportions. Samudhaaya has supported the Kargil Relief Fund, Orissa Flood Relief Fund, victims of the Gujarat earthquake and The Cancer Institute WIA (for pediatric cancer). It has, in recent years, enabled heart surgeries of 100 underprivileged children at Sri Ramachandra Medical Centre, Chennai and also offered infrastructural assistance to Sri Arunodayam.
If you recall, on the occasion of its 10th anniversary, in 2010, Samudhaaya spearheaded three key projects – renovation of the building for The Clarke School for the Deaf, financial aid for Dean Foundation (a non-profit medical foundation that provides free hospice and palliative care) and Tulir (Centre for the Prevention & Healing of Child Sexual Abuse).
On 31 October 2010, the 20th anniversary of my Guru Padmabhushan Dr.M.L.Vasanthakumari, Samudhaaya Foundation launched an organ donation awareness program wherein my family and friends signed up for organ donation. As on date, the Samudhaaya registry lists 45 compassionate souls who have volunteered to donate their organs, endorsing that the greatest gift is that of renewing life for a fellow being.
It is time again for our hearts to reach out and support the less fortunate. The statistics related to cancer in children are staggering. Although there has been enormous progress made towards the treatment of these children, India alone reports 60,000 new cases of childhood cancer every year. Nearly 50-60% of children affected with cancer are unable to overcome the disease. Apart from the initial shock, fear, numbness and disbelief, the parents also suffer from acute psychological distress; overnight, families are face to face with a medical, social and economic crisis. As a result, parents sometimes refuse or discontinue treatment due to the extreme costs involved.
We must remember that children are our hope for the future. We should endeavor to provide financial support and other appropriate support systems to help struggling parents make the right choice. With this next venture, Sahaay 2011, Samudhaaya Foundation will provide funds to supply medicines to underprivileged children whose only hope is health care at a Pediatric Oncology Unit. Dr. Julius Scott, Head of the Pediatric Hematology and Oncology Department at Sri Ramachandra Medical College, Chennai, will offer his expertise in guiding Samudhaaya towards this effort.
Samudhaaya’s parallel effort for children is Prema Vaasam, a home for mentally and physically challenged and underprivileged children. Here, the afflicted ones and the healthy ones live in great harmony, complementing each other with their thoughts, emotions and aptitudes. Samudhaaya wants to help these children rise above their limitations and reach their maximum potential. We are seeking to offer financial support for these special children in order to help them achieve their goals.
We ask you for your generous pledge of support for this worthy drive. Children cannot fight cancer alone, but they can, with a little help from us! Your donation WILL make a difference. Be an angel to these little angels. I thank you in advance for your consideration and generosity.
‘A bit of fragrance always clings to the hand that gives roses.’
In the service of humanity,
Padmashri Sudha Ragunathan
Founder & Managing Trustee