Yavnika Khanna, Delegate (2006-2013), South American Business Forum, India
Any curious traveler would have noticed piles of stones along mountainous routes or expansive sea shores. The size of these ‘cairns’ ranges from stone hills to tiny heaps of sundry stones. Different people have different interpretations of what these structures represent. I think they may have some significance as effective landmarks. They serve as rough navigational guides. Most of all they stand tall, amidst turbulence to represent the might of the handiwork of countless people over time. They are work in progress –landmarks.
The South American Business Forum (SABF) can be equated to a cairn. The event was a milestone in my professional and personal journey. I attended the Forum in 2005, when it was a nascent idea. At that time, for a young Indian student, this meant crossing over oceans to experience a new continent, to get to know how far trade and commerce bind us all, to understand the significance of the word globalized. Today, it means much more to a student in my home country, India, thanks to the hardwork of the organizing and founding teams.
To see the Forum evolve as a towering landmark has been a delightful feeling since the past few years. I am amazed by how every team builds upon the passion of their predecessors and executes on the vision of the forum –to build bridges between the South American business community and rest of the world. In the process, I too have won many friends and colleagues, who made this journey worthwhile. The SABF community stands out and we share camaraderie wherever we meet at other global forums, in any part of the world. Those meaningful days spent in Buenos Aires are remembered with much fondness by each one of us.
It is my privilege as a delegate to give back to this cairn, and to add a couple of stones to make it taller and stronger . The best part of being a delegate is a chance to live the days and enrich them with the hopes and dreams of other prospective applicants and attendees. Despite having graduated, I still find myself filled with excitement every passing year.I was the only attendee from India in 2005. Now, we have a number of Indian students who have made it and continue to add to the cairn. It is a landmark in the making, and already one if I judge by the growing supporters it has across continents. Kudos to everyone part of the tribe!