Born and brought up in Mumbai, she graduated with a degree in LifeScience and Biochemistry from St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai. She went on to pursue a Masters by Research in LifeScience at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland in 2005. Following her Masters, she received a fully funded scholarship to get her PhD in Neuroscience, from the University of Edinburgh. Tatyana went on to secure a post doctoral position at Cambridge University where she worked on Alzheimers Research at The Gurdon Institiute in Cambridge.
Her sister – Veruschka who was diagnosed with Autism, was the sole inspiration and motivation for Tatyana to take up research specifically in Neuroscience. Being the third parent in the family, she knew firsthand the daily struggle that families like hers, had to undergo to look after and care for their adult children with developmental disabilities. Getting restless with the slow pace of research, Tatyana decided to take on a new approach and make a difference NOW in the lives of individuals with developmental disabilities like her sister. The result – The Veruschka Foundation.
Born and brought up in Mumbai, Christina graduated with a degree in LifeScience from St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai. Christina went on to pursue a Masters in Environmental Protection and Management at the University of Edinburgh in Scotland in 2005. A combination of circumstances and opportunities landed her a job in the financial industry working in Investment Services at the Bank of New York Mellon in Edinburgh. This twist of fate led Christina to her current position working as a Financial Paraplanner at NW Brown & Company in Cambridge.
Christina grew up with the wonderful and rewarding experience of having an aunt – Leela ammachy (Mariamma Thomas) with Down’s Syndrome. After the passing of her grandmother, the responsibility of caring for her aunt was readily taken up by her father and their family. It was during this time that Christina and Tatyana became friends during their graduate degree in St. Xavier’s college. Having witnessed the love and care of her father for his sister and the unadulterated love that her aunt gave to their family, Christina questioned the future of those individuals with developmental disabilities who did not have any surviving family members or siblings to care for them.
After 13 years of friendship, it was around a year ago that Tatyana and Christina set out with the idea to help individuals with developmental disabilities. Their personal experiences of caring for a sister with Autism and an aunt with Down syndrome respectively not only affirmed their friendship but also evoked in them a deep-seated responsibility to help other individuals with developmental disabilities and raise awareness for this cause. As a family missing the presence of Veruschka in their lives and with a pillar of support in Christina, the idea of the Foundation took birth.
Founder/ Director – Tatyana B. Dias, PhD
Founder/ Director – Christina A. Joseph, MSc
Promoter Director – Mr Aloysius S. Dias
Promoter Director – Mr Pravin Anchan