The Central Mid-Day Meal Scheme is a government initiative to provide freshly cooked nutritious lunch to government and government-aided school children. Over the years, this Scheme has turned out to be a strong medium in the progress of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyaan. And, so that the benefits reach each and every child, many NGOs have stepped forward to expand this Scheme by partnering with the Central Government and State Governments. One such NGO is The Akshaya Patra Foundation that began its journey as a mid-day meal NGO in Andhra Pradesh in 2008.
Akshaya Patra’s reach in Andhra Pradesh
Akshaya Patra began implementing the mid-day meal programme in Andhra Pradesh by establishing its first centralised kitchen in Vishakhapatnam in 2008. Gradually, it expanded its reach by establishing centralised kitchens in Kakinada (2015), Mangalagiri (2016), and Nellore (2017). All the kitchens are 5S and GMP standardised huge cooking units. They strictly adhere to hygiene and cleanliness standards and implement Kaizen, Continuous Improvement Projects and Six Sigma methodologies to improve productivity and efficiency of operational processes. By implementing the mid-day meal scheme in Andhra Pradesh, Akshaya Patra currently provides freshly cooked wholesome school lunch to 74,409 children in 370 schools.
Meal Menu of Andhra Pradesh kitchens
So that children enjoy and eat their school lunch readily, Akshaya Patra has designed its meal menu to suit the local taste of a particular location by maintaining the nutritional quality intact. The items served to children in Andhra Pradesh as part of the school lunch are: rice, vegetable biryani (a popular rice dish), pulihora (tamarind rice), sambar (a mixed vegetable and lentil curry), green leafy vegetable dal (lentil curry), pappucharu (a type of sambar), vegetable curry, raitha (a curd-based side dish), janthikalu (a South Indian savoury snack), sweet pongal (a rice-based sweet dish), and banana.
The prepared meals are delivered to schools in customised insulated delivery vehicles. This helps to retain freshness until it is consumed. Each of the four kitchens in Andhra Pradesh has their designated meal delivery vehicles to deliver meals to children on every school day.
You can make a difference
As a mid-day meal NGO in Andhra Pradesh, Akshaya Patra wants to benefit more children with the goodness of nutritious school lunch. Though the NGO operates in a Public-Private Partnership model and receives government aid to run the programme, it requires support and involvement of the civil society too. It takes just Rs. 950 to feed a child for the entire year. Along with supporting healthy growth in children, this meal gives them an opportunity to attend school and get educated. It upholds the dreams and hopes of children and instils the determination to achieve it. Not 10, but you can always make a difference by feeding at least 1 child. Sponsor a child, today!