Volunteer for an NGO in India

Be the agent of change volunteer for an NGO

All of us are so entangled in our daily humdrums that we hardly have time to think beyond our calendars. Yet, there are a few amongst us who can be seen taking action to better the society. They are the volunteers – the agents of change. It is not that they have additional hours in their clock; rather they have the trait called ‘willingness’. The willingness to do something to improve a situation and not just have a conversation over a cup of tea. Be it an Indian NGO or any global NGO, all charitable organisations welcome volunteers with open arms. Even though funds are a critical aspect for an NGOs operation, volunteers play a big role in an NGOs lifecycle.

“Volunteers do not necessarily have the time;
they just have the heart.” –
Elizabeth Andrew.

What are the benefits of volunteering?

Volunteering is a unique example of how selfless service can help evolve our individual selves from within while transforming the world outside of us.

  • Benefits for the self: When you volunteer your time and skill with an NGO, you receive the fulfilment of bettering the society you are a part of. The inner satisfaction of being a support system for the society is immeasurable. And, the impact you create in the society lasts forever.
  • Benefits for the society: Your time, skill, and efforts potentially change the ecosystem of the society in the most desirable way. For instance, if you engage in volunteer opportunities with a children NGO, then you help several children belonging to challenging socio-economic backgrounds to receive their basic rights, education, health benefits and more. Basically, you transform their lives bit by bit to make it better.

Volunteer with Indian NGO

Why not begin your volunteering journey by joining an organisation in your neighbourhood? Yes, there are more than 3 million Indian NGOs working in various sectors and there is all possibility that one among them could be operating in your neighbourhood too. Or you could also choose an organisation to volunteer with depending on your interest such as child rights, child education, animal protection, water conservation and the like.

As an example, let’s look at The Akshaya Patra Foundation. This is a mid-day meal NGO of India serving school children with nutritious lunch on each school day. This Indian NGO has been in the service of children for the past 19 years. Akshaya Patra has its own kitchens across 51 locations of 12 States and 2 Union Territories to prepare the mid-day meals. Cognisant of the importance of supporters, Akshaya Patra provides a several volunteer opportunities wherein supporters can dedicate their time in the kitchen activities and in beneficiary schools; they can share their knowledge and help in expansion of the Foundation’s reach; they can be online ambassadors and spread the work of the NGO in their social network, and more such opportunities – all to benefit children for whom school meals play a very crucial role. So, choose an Indian NGO you most identify with and generously extend your support as a volunteer.

Because your support matters!

 

 

Feeding initiatives implemented by Akshaya Patra in India

Food first, everything else comes later! We all will agree to this.

THE AKSHAYA PATRA FOUNDATION Spreading hope through food!

Food is the basic necessity of any living thing, and so is true for humans too! We all have experienced hunger at some point or the other. We have also experienced the repercussions of staying hungry – low energy, tiredness, inability to concentrate or focus, unproductive, and health issues such as headache, gastric, acidity and so on. And these are the conditions we may undergo for missing out may be a meal or two. Then, imagine those who go hungry every single day! Yes, hunger is a much bigger problem than we can comprehend.

Hunger facts from around the world

The cause of hunger varies ranging from socio-economic backgrounds to natural or man-made disasters. To tackle this situation, world organisations, governments of countries, and non-governmental organisations have intervened at various levels. Yet, hunger remains a persistent problem. Amidst all the strides made around the world, The Akshaya Patra Foundation, a non-governmental organisation in India is also making efforts to combat hunger among children and disaster-hit survivors.

Akshaya Patra implements the Mid-Day Meal Programme in partnership with the Government of India. Established in 2000, it is one of the oldest mid-day meal NGOs in the country. Through this programme, Akshaya Patra provides free school lunch to children studying in Government schools and Government-aided schools. Presently, the NGO feeds 1,765,436 children in 16,785 schools situated in 49 locations of 12 States and 1 Union Territory namely Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Odisha, Rajasthan, Silvassa, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, Tripura, and Uttar Pradesh.

Aside from the Mid-Day Meal Programme, this charitable trust in India also provides nutritious food in Anganwadi centres and has been a part of several disaster relief operations within and beyond the Indian boundaries.

akshaya patra feeding programme

 

Together, we can battle the hunger crisis and defeat it too. Support non-governmental organisations in India like Akshaya Patra because these organisations not only fill hungry stomachs but also nurture children right from the beginning. They also extend a helping hand to disaster-affected people during the hour of crisis. When you support to feed the children or contribute towards disaster relief feeding, you truly uphold the spirit of humanity.

Everyone has equal right to food.

So, take a step to support those who lack the means to access it.

 

Sponsor A Child For One Year Through Akshaya Patra

Rs. 1,100 – what can it get you – a shirt, dinner for two, a pair of shoes, grocery for a week, a movie ticket at a multiplex… or have we forgotten the value of a 1000-rupee note as demonetization marked its exit? Well, this humble amount of money has much more to it than meets the eye!

Indu has been abandoned by her father after the demise of her mother. She is taken care of by her grandmother who does small tailoring jobs to make the ends meet. While the grandmother was juggling the possibilities of providing education to Indu, her neighbour suggested a nearby school which provided free school meals too. Indu’s grandmother thought no further and got little Indu enrolled in the school immediately. Today, Indu is a Standard VI student. She dearly values her grandmother’s care and understands the struggles she has been through in taking care of Indu. Indu says, “I aim to become a doctor to ‘cure my grandmother’. I see her coughing all day round, increasing at night. When I rub her back to comfort, she says, ‘until My Little Doctor is with me, nothing can harm me.’ The high cost of health care keeps my grandmother away from a check-up. By becoming a doctor, I want to cure my grandmother and provide free treatment to other people as well.” 

School children-Unleash the power of Rs. 1,100

This is just one story among 17,65,597 children – the beneficiaries of The Akshaya Patra Foundation, a mid-day meal NGO that provides free school meals, on each school day.

What’s the role of Rs. 1,100?

Rs. 1,100 = Health + Education + Confidence + Power to realise aspirations.

Yes, when you sponsor a child through Akshaya Patra by donating Rs. 1,100, you essentially provide a child with nutritious and sumptuous school meals for an entire year. And these meals ensure their good health and regular schooling. So, when you do the math, it indicates that your contribution of Rs. 1,100 is preparing a child to be an empowered and resourceful citizen in the near future. Now, imagine if you keep adding this humble denomination, how many assets you would be creating for the nation. In essence, there lies the answer to the significant role of Rs. 1,100!

How to support Akshaya Patra?

The Akshaya Patra Foundation is one of the pioneer NGOs in the mid-day meal sector. It has a remarkable history of 18+ years of serving children with wholesome school meals. The Foundation that started off with feeding just 1,500 children in five schools, today feeds 17,65,597 children in 15,668 schools situated across 45 locations in 12 states of India. Akshaya Patra humbly dedicates this progress to the unceasing support of the Central Government and various State Governments along with thousands of philanthropic supporters who generously donate for children.

You can support this NGO through online donation and also by creating campaigns to conduct online fundraising. So, take a step to unleash the power of Rs. 1,100 because it can ensure no child in India is be deprived of education because of hunger – a vision that steers all the efforts of Akshaya Patra.

 

 

When was mid-day meal started by Akshaya Patra?

One firm vision – ‘No child in India shall be deprived of education because of hunger’… just 1 kitchen to cook meals for 1,500 children… began the journey called Akshaya Patra!

The Akshaya Patra Foundation is a non-profit organisation in India. In partnership with the Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India, and various State Governments, Akshaya Patra implements the Mid-Day Meal Scheme across the country. It was established in 2000 and is headquartered in Bengaluru, Karnataka.

Akshaya Patra serving children 2000

Akshaya Patra then…

Once the idea of providing school lunch was conceptualised, Venu Vadana Gopal Dasa conducted a detailed research to choose the schools in need of the meals. Reminiscing the past, he says, “I went to explore the surrounding areas in Bengaluru and found that the schools in the outskirts and rural areas were in maximum need of a school Mid-Day Meal Programme. I visited Government schools in areas like Peenya, Chikkabidarakalu and Makali and was moved by the plight of the kids there. We then approached these schools and served the first meals on 3 June 2000 to a total of 1,500 children in five Government schools.”

Over a period, the impact of this initiative was witnessed in the form of increased enrolment, regularity in attendance, improved health, and better concentration during class hours. The overwhelming response from the schools brought to fore the need for the Mid-Day Meal Programme, leading Akshaya Patra to expand its service to more schools.

Initial hurdles…

The initial journey for this non-profit organisation in India wasn’t a smooth sail. The main concern was lack of food packing vessels and vehicles to transport the cooked meals. Philanthropists Mr Mohandas Pai stepped in by donating the first vehicle to transport food to the schools and Mr Abhay Jain promised to get more support in the form of donors to contribute for the programme.

A welcome progress…

As Akshaya Patra was already providing food for education through its school meal programme, it was called to give testimony for verifying the efficacy of providing cooked meals to schools. Following this, the Supreme Court of India passed a mandate on 28 November 2001 stating “We direct the State Governments/Union Territories to implement the Mid-Day Meal Scheme by providing every child in every Government and Government assisted Primary School with a prepared mid-day meal.” This was a welcome progression for Akshaya Patra and the Foundation partnered with the Central Government and various State Governments to implement the Mid-Day Meal Scheme in a public-private partnership model.

Akshaya Patra now…

A journey that began by nourishing 1,500 children in one location has today grown to becoming a movement with 17,65,597 children in 45 locations across 12 states in India. The partnership with the Government under the Mid-Day Meal Scheme and constant support from well-wishers and donors helped Akshaya Patra to expand the food for education programme during the course of 18 years. It also aided the non-profit organisation in India to initiate several child-centric programmes such as Anganwadi feeding, scholarship, talent development, along with supporting the Foundation’s disaster relief feeding service.

Akshaya Patra in future…

With the mission to nourish 50 lakh children in India by 2025, Akshaya Patra is moving forward strategically and sustainably. The Foundation is certain that with concerted effort from the Government, the policy-makers, corporates and businesses, and the civil society, we will be able to create generations of healthy, educated, and resourceful citizens; empowering them to take on the mission called Prosperous India.

Akshaya Patra’s Effort in Assam Flood Relief 2019

Water level rising every hour… 30 of total 33 districts submerged… 4,157 villages inundated… approximately 43-lakh people affected… 95% of Kaziranga National Park under water… This is the current situation of Assam!

Akshaya Patra Effort in Assam Flood Relief 2019

Assam has been hit by one of the worst floods in a decade leaving the entire state paralysed. The Government of Assam issued a red alert on 15 July 2019 as the situation worsened every passing hour. Nearly 1.5 lakh people have been provided shelter in relief camps operational across the state. In a grim situation like this, The Akshaya Patra Foundation, an NGO in Assam has stepped in to provide cooked meals to affected people in Kamrup district.

Guwahati flood relief work by Akshaya Patra

Akshaya Patra, a mid-day meal NGO has its kitchen in Guwahati, Assam. It begun its Guwahati flood relief activities from 17th July. The NGO is providing meals to affected people twice a day – lunch and dinner from its Guwahati kitchen. It began the relief operations by feeding 700 people in a relief camp in Athgaon area and now has extended its service to other relief camps in Kamrup district. So far, this NGO in Assam has already provided more than 22,000 meals. The Foundation is serving rice, vegetable pulao, kabuli chana, and mixed vegetable dal for lunch; and khichdi and labra sabji for dinner. In order to garner support from people, Akshaya Patra has started a campaign where one can contribute online donation in aid of Assam flood relief.

Past relief activities of Akshaya Patra

Be it within the borders of India or beyond, Akshaya Patra has always been proactive in responding to disaster situations. The NGO is always present to provide relief to crisis-hit people by providing cooked food.

akshaya patra past relief activities

Support flood relief activities

Over the years, Akshaya Patra has received heart-warming responses from people coming forward to support disaster-affected fellow citizens. They have generously contributed towards Akshaya Patra’s relief campaigns at different occasions. Currently, Assam needs your urgent help. Come forth and support Guwahati flood relief campaign by generously contributing online donation in aid of people of Assam. Support now!

Akshaya Patra – an NGO in India serving food for education!

When we hold a flipped coin within our palms, we can see only one side of the coin. And the visible side decides the winner of the toss. Similarly, when we look around us, we only see one side of India and conveniently ignore the other. But it’s about time we take a look on both the sides because that’s where the real solution for a progressed and developed nation is hidden!

‘Meals of hope’ served by Akshaya Patra!

Considered as the world’s largest democracy, today India is a rising economy and an emerging power. It has achieved several global laurels in almost all areas of sports, business, technology, and talent. At the same time, it is also struggling to keep up with indicators to ensure accessibility of food, health, and education for all. In a scenario like this, The Akshaya Patra Foundation, an NGO in India is relentlessly striving each day to counter ill health and illiteracy with wholesome food.

Food for education

It is not an unknown occurrence that when hunger strikes even the fittest person fails to deliver his share of work. So, the question is, can we expect children to learn and perform in empty stomachs? This is where Akshaya Patra’s role become significant as it provides food for education. A large section of children in India has to constantly make a choice between work and school because hunger plays the spoiler. These children have aspirations alike any other children who are privileged to attend school without a second thought; but what amongst the former is lack of basic amenities. For such children, a free meal initiates their steps towards school.

As an NGO in India for children, Akshaya Patra is cognisant of the crucial role school meals play in schooling of children from challenging backgrounds. This meal not only fills up their stomachs but also nurtures their young minds with determination, confidence, and hope. By attending school regularly, children become ever more certain that their aspirations are achievable and that a much better and brighter future lies ahead of them. These meals support health and education of children empowering them to be resourceful and self-dependent citizens of the country.

It was in 2000 when Akshaya Patra first served food for education for 1,500 children in five schools of Bengaluru; and since then there has been no looking back. With strategic planning, operational efficiency, hygiene and cleanliness standards, and sustainable expansion, this NGO in India currently provides school meals to 17,65,597 children each school day in 12 states.

Read More : https://www.akshayapatra.org/about-us

When you step in, wonders happen!

Charity is always appreciated and when it is about providing something as basic as food to a child, it becomes dearer. When you sponsor a child, you uphold their childhood; you convey to them, ‘there’s someone who cares’. Unless we take care of children right from the grass root level, it is impossible to achieve the status of a developed nation. Quoting Mother Teresa here, she said, If you can’t feed a hundred people, then feed just one.” Thus, if each one of us sponsor a child, then it is indeed possible to create a New India with an universal side – healthy, educated, and prosperous!

 

Akshaya Patra’s work in Assam and Andhra Pradesh

The Akshaya Patra Foundation, a non-profit organisation in India has been supporting education by providing nutritious and tasty school lunch to children of Government schools and Government-aided schools since its establishment in 2000.

 

table1- pan india reach

 

  • Akshaya Patra is one of the oldest implementors of the Mid-Day Meal Scheme.
  • Initially, it provided food to children of just five schools in Bengaluru, Karnataka.
  • Today, it is operational across India.
  • Akshaya Patra has received ICAI Gold Shield Award for excellence in financial reporting for consecutively seven years and has been inducted to ICAI’s Hall of Fame. It is the only NGO in the 70 years history of ICAI to have won this distinction.

 

Akshaya Patra operates centralised kitchens in 43 locations and decentralised kitchens in two locations. It has a well-managed logistics with dedicated fleet of customised meal delivery vehicles for each location. In order to ensure children consume their meals readily and happily, this non-profit organisation has designed location-specific menus by keeping intact the recommended nutritional levels. The menu is also cyclical in nature so that each day children receive different items as part of their school meal.

Below is a quick overview of Akshaya Patra’s service in Assam and Andhra Pradesh.

tapf kitchens assam and andhara pradesh

What do beneficiaries say?

The mid-day meals act as an incentive for parents to send their children to school and it adds hope in lakhs of children that their ambitions and dreams are achievable. As an NGO in Assam, this is how Akshaya Patra upkeeps the right to nutrition and education:

  • “Mid-day meals are very important. The mid-day meal served in the school is a relief for the family. At home, it’s mostly rice, dalor pitha (a type of local bread made of rice flour). Vegetables or lentils are not on the family’s menu every day. I enjoy my school lunch especially on Wednesdays and Saturdays when we get kheer, khichdi, and vegetable pulao – a delicacy which is rarely cooked at home.” Mrinmay Malakar.
  • Parvati hails from a challenging background and has the complete support of her mother with regards to her education. She aspires to be a Police Officer. Parvati’s mother opines that education will help her daughter succeed in life and also aid in leading a better life than the current one. The fact that Parvati gets mid-day meal at school comes by as a great relief for the mother.

As an NGO in Andhra Pradesh, this is how Akshaya Patra nurtures dreams:

  • Narsimha Raju says, “If I concentrate on one particular sport, I will excel in that sport only. But, if I concentrate on different sports and education, it will help me become a teacher and produce good sportsmen for our school and the country.”
  • Lalita says, “Due to corruption, people who are in need of the several government schemes are not able to avail the benefits. I want to become a District Collector and make my state corruption-free and ensure that people get the benefits of various schemes.”

Akshaya Patra kitchen in Assam and Andhra Pradesh

You can do wonders with just Rs. 1,100!

Yes, with just Rs. 1,100, you can transform the lives of lakhs of children across India. Your generous contribution to Akshaya Patra, one of the pioneer mid-day meal non-profit organisation in India will nourish, nurture and empower children into resourceful and responsible citizens. Support Akshaya Patra. Support Indian children.

Importance of social media presence for an NGO

NGO Social Accounts

First it was the internet, and now it’s social media that has altered our lives to an extent none of us might have ever imagined. We have attached such a kind of reputation to social media that your absence from it labels you as being an unsocial, outdated, or old generation.

Until a decade ago, social media was mainly used as a means of communication. But now, it is a platform to introduce and market businesses. For instance, when Facebook was first launched, we all used it to connect with friends and families. But, now Facebook is used more to market businesses and engage clients. If you visit the official website of any brand or business you will find Facebook as one of the ‘connect with us’ options, and the same is true for other social media platforms as well such as Twitter, Instagram, YouTube etc. The need for social media presence is not only felt by the business sector but by the not-for-profit organisations too.

Since, not-for-profit organisations or NGOs need the support of the civil society, it becomes a prerequisite to reach out to the mass. Here, social media plays a very significant role. If tapped well, social media can generate tremendous support for NGOs by spreading the cause in a limitless manner. Most NGOs – national and international, have realised the power of social media, and hence uses it strategically and creatively to garner support from the mass. One such NGO in India is The Akshaya Patra Foundation. It is a mid-day meal NGO headquartered in Bengaluru with operational units in 36 locations across 12 states. Currently, the Foundation is providing mid-day meals to more than 1.7 million children on each school day.

Akshaya Patra stepped into the social media arena around 2012. Currently, it is present on several social media platforms – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Google Plus.

With over – 10,000 followers in Twitter

1,700,275 followers in Facebook

More than 15,000 followers in Instagram

2,790 subscribers in YouTube

The Foundation uses these platforms to share NGO news and events, share videos and photo albums, run campaigns, update supporters of recent developments and the like. The Foundation also uses blogging as a means to involve supporters with its cause. The NGO blog includes various organisation -specific topics such as events, interviews, organisational highlights etc.; child-centric topics such as food, education, health, skill development; along with global topics such as environment, child labour and the like. By far, social media presence of Akshaya Patra has helped the organisation to get identified easily, interact with supporters present across the globe, run campaigns successfully, and garner tremendous support.

In conclusion, social media has opened up numerous channels for NGOs to reach out to people. If NGOs approach the social media avenue in a planned and strategic way, it has the potential to expand its cause manifold.

Follow NGO News and Blogs to Stay Updated on Social Issues

It is often said that if there was social justice, there would be no need for social service. Unfortunately, there is a lot of inequality that disrupts social justice. Lacks of awareness on social issues only add to this situation. That’s why NGOs around the globe keep their donors informed through blogs or news attempting to increase a collective knowledge so more people can come forward.

When we think of charity for children, it connects us with issues related to lack of education and hunger. Here’s why supporting charity keeps you informed about social issues:

Social injustice grabs your attention

Word Cloud Support a Cause

Even when you have given charity donation just once, you must have noticed how naturally headlines related to specific issues grab your attention. You find yourself reading NGO news and blogs or devouring social stories that impact several lives. You naturally become a more aware citizen especially towards issues of injustice; you share this concern with colleagues and friends inspiring them to contribute as well, unconsciously creating a community of believers of social justice. Many contributors and donors start their own blogs and make others aware of the most pressing social issues around the world.  Akshaya Patra keeps its readers and donors informed about its Mid-Day Meal Programme in its endeavour of a deeper charity for children.

Human beings are reciprocal by nature. We expect something in return for a favour. NGOs like Akshaya Patra provide tax deductions and non-monetary motivation in exchange for a donation. When you contribute, you trigger an unconscious cycle of kindness because you talk about your contribution and share it with others. This gesture inspires many and creates an impression of you that often comes back in the form of small favours and help when you need them most. Moreover, others see you as someone who is concerned about social issues and they may get encouraged to work towards such causes as well.

You push them for accountability

Of course, when you make a conscious contribution, you want to find out all about what that organisation does. This pushes non-profits to improve their processes, do their job more honestly and engage in better management of resources. Donating to a charity indirectly contributes into a transparent ecosystem of social issues where socially aware donors demand more accountability and NGOs implement systems more efficiently. Pick up any NGO blog and you will read several stories where a positive difference was made. At Akshaya Patra too, we are always excited to share amazing stories of hope with our donors as they contribute in charity for children. We want our donors to know that their contribution wasn’t futile.

Charity for children

Supporting-a-cause-is-always-the-right-choice

At Akshaya Patra, it’s our conscious desire to encourage you to understand our Mid-Day Meal Programme, the children who are benefitted by it, and their stories. Through this, you open up to a whole new world of giving where you are aware of the vital concerns related to children.

Make an aware and conscious choice today. Donate to Akshaya Patra.