Convergence is at the heart of TCW, and nowhere can it be more important than between our children. So perhaps not surprisingly, discussions held in Bristol in September 2009 with Dr Cletus Babu, Chairman of Social Change and Development (SCAD), TCW’s partner in Tamil Nadu, India, led to the idea of inviting some of our Bristol school children to spend time with SCAD in Tamil Nadu, in the first instance, with reciprocal initiatives to follow. This was quickly followed by the related concept that sending a group of children from several schools, rather than just one, would encourage convergence between the schools as well as with their Indian hosts.We have now settled on the three Merchant Venturers’ schools – Colstons Collegiate School (CCS), Colstons Girls School (CGS) and the Merchants Academy (MA), and the project planning has started, led by Tuki Rounds, Head of Religious Studies at CCS, supported by senior staff from CGS and MA.We do not underestimate the difficulties and complexity of this venture – selection, preparation, funding, visas and health requirements, as well as briefing and assimilation, all within the three school cluster. But given a fair wind and goodwill all round, we hope that a group of around 25 children and 3 teachers will spend two weeks in Tamil Nadu, and perhaps in neighbouring Kerala too, in the second half of 2011.It promises to be a life changing experience for all the participants, as it was for me when I had the good fortune to spend time with SCAD in December 2009. Wish us luck!
Karen Morgan OBE DL Chairman of Trustees, TCWDeputy Chairman, Colstons School Member, Society of Merchant Venturers