Our Vision: Kickstarting Jagrit Labs
MakerGhat is only our initial offering as part of a larger effort, Jagrit Research Foundation (or Jagrit Labs). “Jagrit”, which means “awakening” in Hindi, is a call for action. Our vision is to kickstart a change in how innovation is traditionally viewed in India as the domain of the highly educated. There is a dearth of original ideas, products, research, and companies in India considering the massive human resources available. This will continue to be the case until the overlooked 99% of the population unable to attend top universities or any university at all is mobilized and equipped. We hope to effect a cultural change in the technology sector in India, starting with Mumbai.
The founders of Jagrit Labs have over 5 years of combined experience working with community leaders in and around slum communities and with with slum residents. We have first-hand experience with the creative potential of underserved communities, despite (and often because of) their lack of formal education or non-traditional learning.
Among youth, in particular, there is a thirst to do something meaningful and different with their lives and to challenge the status quo, but a lack of opportunities. We provide a platform where these individuals can nurture and showcase their talents, in an environment where they are free to experiment and contribute to society in unanticipated ways.
Our long term goal is to evolve into an incubator for projects, enabling youth to become community leaders and launch social and commercial enterprises to empower their communities.
Key Objectives of Jagrit Labs
Starting with MakerGhat in Mumbai, we tap into talent in local communities, not only encouraging youth to learn technical and soft skills, but pushing them to design and build solutions to problems in their communities and beyond.
Research and Development
Our team of voluntary prototyping instructors not only use the resources of the center to generate original products but also help and inspire students to realize their ideas. We develop partnerships between students, researchers, social entreprises, domain experts, and more around the world to support in their projects.
Students of MakerGhat will provide the human resources and energy for driving the various activities at the center, much of the research emerge from the areas that they identify as most compelling and relevant in their communities.
Finally, we provide scaffolding to the point where students are motivated to advance their own learning. We will “graduate” students from Jagrit Labs so that they can pursue their own careers. We hope to create a domino effect where alumni of the space go on to inspire others in their communities.