Several NGOs in India are engaged in improving lives of children hailing from not-so-privileged backgrounds. Right from providing them with health and care facilities to ensuring equal opportunities, these NGOs are actively involved with transforming lives of children by empowering them to be resourceful citizens. Akshaya Patra is one such charity in India that has been dedicatedly supporting education of children by providing them with nutrition-rich school meals for the past 18 years.
Quick facts on children in India
According to Census 2011, India is home to 472 million children thereby constituting 39% of the country’s total population. However, the country as a whole face quite a few challenges when it comes to health and education of this young populace.
- According to ICDS 2015, 19.8 million children below age 6 are undernourished.
- According to National Family Health Survey (NFHS) 4, 2015–16, 38% (1 in 3) children between 0–5 years are stunted; 21% (1 in 5) children suffer from wasting; 36% of children under 5 years of age are underweight; and 58% of children between 6 months — 5 years are anaemic.
- Census 2011 reports 1 in 4 children of school-going age is out of school resulting in a drop-out total to 99 million children.
- According to District Information System for Education (DISE) 2014–15, only 32 children out of every 100 children, finish their school education age-appropriately, and only 2% of the schools offer complete school education from Class 1 to Class 12.
The Government, private and public sector organisations, NGOs, and the general public — when work in unison can alter the above-mentioned not so pleasant scenario by leaps and bounds. And, several steps have been already taken in this direction. So, here we will focus on the role of charity in India in bettering the situation of children.
Children-specific charities work towards various facets encompassing primary health care, child rights, education, talent development, and the like. The works of these NGO sustainably transform lives of children and is significant in breaking the vicious cycle of poverty-hunger-illiteracy.
Top NGO of India
The role of each child-centric charity in India is equally vital. And, The Akshaya Patra Foundation is one of the pioneer mid-day meal NGO that has been dedicatedly working towards improving nutrition quotient among children. With the vision, “No child in India shall be deprived of education because of hunger” the Foundation serves freshly cooked nutritious meals to school-going children across India. Each day, the Foundation provides wholesome meals to more than 1.76 million school children across 42 locations of 12 states. Aside from this core cause, this NGO is also involved in Anganwadi feeding wherein it provides nutrition-rich meals to 1,61,410 children (aged 3–6 years) at 4,786 Anganwadi centres and 6,000 pregnant women and lactating mothers across 323 centres.
With its service of more than 18 years, Akshaya Patra has carved a niche for itself as a top NGO of India while also being recognised as the world’s largest NGO-run school meal programme. It is the first Indian NGO to be inducted to ICAI’s Hall of Fame for excelling in maintaining financial transparency and accountability by regularly publishing and submitting audited financial reports. The Foundation has also been awarded the prestigious Gandhi Peace Prize for its contribution towards the socio-economic development of India by providing mid-day meals to millions of school-going children across the country.
Your support matters!
Akshaya Patra’s realm of service nourishes and nurtures not just the children but their dreams and aspirations too. From doctors and engineers to dancers and singers, from athletes and players to chefs and teachers, from police and army to pilots and astronauts, the beneficiaries of Akshaya Patra are storehouse of talent and determination. All they need is a little support and what best than giving wings to someone’s dream. Donate to charity and witness the change in the form of a transformed India.
About the author:
The Akshaya Patra Foundation, one of the top mid-day charities in India serves more than 1.76 million children across 42 locations of 12 states. By supporting this NGO, you can transform lives of children by providing them with the much-needed nutrition and rightful education.