NGO: Akshaya Patra’s work in Rajasthan
Rajasthan, a state in the northwest part of India is the largest Indian state by area and the seventh most populated. It is the land of royals, forts, palaces, and rich culture and heritage. But amidst the kaleidoscopic outlook lies a gripping concern. Rajasthan has the fourth lowest literacy rate in the country and has the lowest female literacy rate too (Census 2011). It is also one among the BIMARU states that has lowest literacy rate and learning outcomes; the other states being Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Uttar Pradesh.
Rajasthan is also battling high rate of out of school and school drop-out rate. The Government has been taking several steps to address this situation with mid-day meal in schools being one of them. As a supporting arm to the Government efforts, The Akshaya Patra Foundation stepped in to the state as an NGO in Rajasthan in 2004.
Background of Akshaya Patra
The Akshaya Patra Foundation is an 18-year old children charity implementing the Mid-Day Meal Scheme across India. It is headquartered in Bengaluru, Karnataka and has its operations in 12 states and 1 Union Territory including Rajasthan.
At present, Akshaya Patra provides daily school meals to 1,765,436 children studying in 16,785 Government schools and Government-aided schools situated in 49 locations.
Advent in Rajasthan
In the year 2004, Akshaya Patra expanded its operations to Rajasthan by establishing a centralised kitchen in Jaipur. Since then there has been no looking back. Today, this children charity nourishes 2,57,879 children across the state on each school day. Below is a quick look at the location-wise operations and the number of children getting benefitted from the meals provided by this NGO in Rajasthan:
Where is the meal prepared?
Akshaya Patra has its own kitchen in each location to prepare meals for the children. Among all the Akshaya Patra kitchens in Rajasthan, the Jaipur, Nathdwara, and Ajmer kitchens are ISO 22000:2005 certified and the remaining kitchens are in the process of certification. All the kitchens — both centralised and decentralised — strictly adhere to hygiene and cleanliness practices while preparing meals. All the centralised kitchens are equipped with hi-tech machines to prepare large quantity meals in a hygienic way each day. Each of the kitchens have a dedicated fleet of customised delivery vehicles to deliver meals hot and fresh to schools. This NGO in Rajasthan follows Kaizen, Continuous Improvement Projects and Six Sigma methodologies in its kitchens to increase productivity and efficiency of the cooking process.
Being a children charity, Akshaya Patra ensures that each child relishes their meals by following a menu that suits the local taste buds along with being nutritious. So, as an NGO in Rajasthan, the Foundation’s menu comprises of:
- roti (Indian flatbread)
- dal (lentil curry)
- rice, mixed vegetable curry
- kadhi (curd-based curry)
- khichdi (a dish made of rice, lentils, and vegetables)
- sweet daliya (a cereal-based dish)
- kheer (rice-based Indian dessert)
Akshaya Patra wants to expand its reach and benefit more children in the state with wholesome meals and rightful education.
Join hands with Akshaya Patra and be a contributing citizen to make Rajasthan a truly royal state with healthy, educated, and vibrant children.