The last few weeks have been very eventful for Acara.  The winners. The Fellows. The Donors. And more. Things will be even more crazy soon. For the good, ofcourse. 🙂

We announced the winners after several long discussions with the judges, university champions, team mentors and our staff members. JAL and BioServ won the Challenge. US participants from both the teams are already in India to meet their Indian counterparts, understand ground realities and build a bonding with the people who will be their customers soon. Teams are travelling to Roorkee and VIT to meet their respective team mates and indulge in brain-storming sessions to create a roadmap for their ventures.

Back in the US, the Acara Founding team and other staff members are working on raising capital for the student ventures. Acara pays the winning teams to attend the Summer Institute at IoNE at the University of Minnesota. These teams will also get some funding to build a prototype, test their product or service and take it to the next step. At the same time, Acara is helping each team, which is interested in taking their ideas forward, in finding funding sources and getting connected to experts. As of now, we are working very closely with teams VellHart, myRain, Suryopahar and MangoSolar. Five of our teams have also been short-listed for the finals of the Next 50 Global Innovation Challenge.

Our Acara Corps Fellows have been very active on the field. Vikash and Anirudha have been building a database of non-profits and social enterprises and they are working on identifying organizations with whom we can collaborate. Raman is lending strong support to teams VellHart and JAL and is helping them think through their plan. Cashmira and Yash are moving fast with solving all the issues in implementing drip irrigation in Charba and also visited Delhi recently to meet other organizations who have been working in this field. Maninder is actively supporting team BioServ and his efforts are turning out to be quite helpful.

Amidst all this, Acara has also been reaching out to fund managers, angel investors, start-up entrepreneurs, event organizers and other individuals and organizations to find synergies and collaborate with the like-minded ones.

Too much has been happening for all of us to be able to follow and we are planning to use BaseCamp more effectively so that projects, discussions and conversations are recorded in a better manner. I will continue to keep you updated. Stay tuned!