The Arya Foundation is in memory of Arya, daughter of two co-founders. Born on Valentines Day, 2004, she taught us unconditional love and giving. Arya was loved by her family every moment of every day.
The love and support from family, friends, and community was abundant. She is our inspiration. She represents our hopes, our dreams, and our idea of a better life for children. Because of her, we have built this foundation. Because of her, we want to help as many children as possible and touch the lives of families, letting them know they aren’t alone. We are here to help. We are here to make a difference.
The Arya Foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt non-profit organization that provides need-based adaptive equipment to children with special needs in St. Louis. Completely volunteer-run, more than 90% of money donated goes to families who need help paying for necessary adaptive equipment.
Even the smallest actions can impact a life. With this belief in mind, The Arya Foundation was inspired to become what it is today. It motivates us, moves us, and provides the principles for the vision we believe in. Not everyone can afford the medical supplies and equipment that are necessary in a child’s life. By providing need-based adaptive equipment to these families, the costs become lower and easier to afford. It is our way of alleviating some stress from the families we help. It is our way of improving lives. But most importantly, it is our way of bringing a smile to the faces of people who really deserve happiness.
Dhananjay (Jay) Kokate Co-Founder, President
A huge computer nerd and father of Arya, Jay is always looking for the next big thing in technology. As President, he oversees the overall operations and makes sure our vision is met.
Sunanda Dhananjay Co-Founder, Vice-President
Mother of Arya, Sunanda came up with the idea to give back to the community through The Arya Foundation. She manages the little details that make up The Arya Foundation’s backbone.
AJ Kokate Co-Founder, Director of Development
Brother of Arya, AJ is an avid food blogger and is currently completing his MBA and MHA while organizing all the events and making sure its attendees are happy with The Arya Foundation.
Janice Roberg Treasurer
While working at Roberg Tax Solutions, Janice makes sure the financial situation of The Arya Foundation is healthy. One of our avid speakers, she is never hesitant to tell anyone about us and spread the word about what we do.
Michelle Todd Director of Philanthropy
A realtor, Michelle can sell you anything if you ask nicely. Having worked in philanthropy for almost 20 years, she works on spreading the mission of The Arya Foundation to the community.
Elizabeth Ignatova Director of Product Design
A huge foodie, Elizabeth likes to say her real job in the organization is to manage AJ. She is a Business Analyst who is big on making sure there is creativity flowing through the organization.
Dustin Taber Volunteer
Born and raised in the St. Louis area, Dustin is an avid supporter of The Arya Foundation and its goals. He enjoys volunteering and helping others has been a longtime professional and personal endeavor for him.