NGO in Karnataka & Its Kitchen

NGO in Karnataka

The Akshaya Patra Foundation is a mid-day meal NGO serving nutritious meals to 1.7 million children on every school day. Its journey as a mid-day meal NGO began in Bangalore in the year 2000. After the Supreme Court’s mandate in 2001, Akshaya Patra partnered with the Central Government and State Government to implement the Mid-Day Meal Scheme in Karnataka and across India.

Akshaya Patra started off its mission to provide ‘unlimited food for education’ by establishing itself as an NGO in Bangalore and providing school meal to 1,500 children in five government schools from its first kitchen in H.K. Hill. Over the years, the Foundation has expanded its reach to seven locations in the state – three in Bangalore, and one each in Ballari, Hubballi, Mangaluru, and Mysuru. Currently, Akshaya Patra has a beneficiary base of 4,86,172 children across 2,968 schools.

Advantages of Mid-Day Meal Scheme

The Supreme Court’s mandate on 28 November 2001 directed all the State Governments and Union Territories to implement the Mid-Day Meal Scheme in every Government and Government assisted schools. As per the Scheme, every child must be provided with a prepared mid-day meal on every school day. The six main aims of this Scheme are:

  • avoid classroom hunger
  • increase school enrolment
  • increase school attendance
  • improve socialisation among castes
  • address malnutrition
  • empower women through employment

Being a mid-day meal NGO, Akshaya Patra strives to give these advantages of mid-day meal scheme to the each and every child of the state and the nation.

Akshaya Patra’s reach in Karnataka

Akshaya Patra serves nutritious mid-day meal in seven locations of Karnataka – three in Bangalore, and one each in Ballari, Hubballi, Mangaluru, and Mysuru. To know when the kitchens started its operation, visit: Kitchen details

All the kitchens in Karnataka are centralised and mechanised cooking units. Among all, H.K Hill and Vasanthapura kitchens are ISO 22000:2005 certified, whereas Ballari, and Hubballi are ISO 22000:2005, ISO 14001, and OHSAS 18001 certified. The Mangaluru, Mysuru and Jigani kitchens are in the process of certification.

Meal Menu of Karnataka Kitchens

Akshaya Patra wants to make sure that children enjoy their meals. Thus, while maintaining the recommended nutrition levels, the Foundation designs its meal menu to suit the local taste of a particular location. So, Karnataka being a South Indian state, the menu caters to the typical southern taste. The meal menu in Karnataka consists of: rice, pulao (a rice-based dish made with vegetables), bisibelebaath (a rice-based dish made with vegetables and lentils), tomato rice, sambar (a mixed vegetable and lentil curry), upma (a semolina-based savoury dish), sweet pongal (a rice-based sweet dish), payasam (a vermicelli-based sweet dish), kesari baath (a semolina-based sweet dish), curd, and pickle.

The prepared meals are delivered to schools in customised insulated vehicles. This allows children to receive fresh and hot meals. And, for this, each of the kitchens in Karnataka has their designated meal delivery vehicles.

Socio-developmental Initiatives

Aside from serving nutritious mid-day meals as an NGO in Bangalore and in Karnataka, Akshaya Patra has also partaken several socio-developmental initiatives as follow:

  • Sponsoring hygiene practice & food safety guidance to government school students
  • Planting of saplings on World Environment Day
  • Distribution of 7500 Hygiene kits to Government School students
  • Blood Donors Camp on Blood Donation Day
  • Scholarship for Merit Students
  • Teachers Day programme

Eco-friendly methods in Karnataka kitchens

While ensuring that the advantages of mid-day meal scheme reach every child in the state, Akshaya Patra also implements various eco-friendly measures to benefit the environment. Some measures are as follows:

  • Biogas stoves that are smokeless have replaced LPG.
  • The recycled water from the Sewage Treatment Plant is used to water plants
  • Effluent Treatment Plant/ Sewage treatment Plants are installed to treat wastewater before it is released into the environment
  • Rainwater harvesting
  • Solar lights and solar heater as an alternate source to reduce the use of electricity.

Make a difference

Akshaya Patra is striving to make a tangible, sustainable, and lasting change. In doing so, it is putting all its efforts to provide something as basic as food to maximum children. As responsible citizens, it is our duty too to ensure children receive healthy meals and education. Thus, support the efforts of Akshaya Patra by contributing NGO online donations. By contributing just Rs. 950, you can provide a year full of school meal to a child!

NGO in Telangana & Its Kitchen

According to the ‘Telangana Socio-Economic Outlook 2018’, there is a substantial discrepancy in literacy rate across the state. While Hyderabad fairs significantly with 83.2%, Jogulamba Gadwal district is struggling with 49.9% literacy rate. It has been reported that of the total 31 districts, 26 districts have literacy rates below the State average of 66.54%. In order to bring the low scoring districts at par with the high scoring districts, the government is putting in lot of efforts. In support of the government’s effort, The Akshaya Patra Foundation, an NGO in Hyderabad began its mid-day meal service in the state in 2008.

Purpose of mid-day meal programme

On 28 November 2001, the Supreme Court of India passed a mandate 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.” Through this scheme it was intended to:

  • avoid classroom hunger
  • increase school enrolment
  • increase school attendance
  • improve socialisation among castes
  • address malnutrition
  • empower women through employment

Headquartered in Bengaluru, Karnataka, Akshaya Patra wanted to give these advantages of mid-day meal scheme to the children of India. Hence, after its inception in 2000, the NGO started expanding its reach across the country. The Foundation made its foray to Telangana by establishing its first kitchen in Hyderabad in 2008. Currently, this NGO is feeding a total of 91,675 children in 805 government schools across the state.

Akshaya Patra Kitchens in Telangana

mid day meal in Telangana

Beginning its journey in 2008, today Akshaya Patra is providing mid-day meal in Telangana from its three centralised kitchens located in Hyderabad, Narsingi, and Kothagudem. Recently, the Foundation inaugurated its fourth kitchen in Kandi and it is the NGO’s largest one-of-a-kind hi-tech mega kitchens. Equipped to feed 1-lakh children per day, this kitchen was built in partnership with the Infosys Foundation.

With a grant of INR 18.50 crore, Infosys Foundation funded the entire construction cost of this kitchen. Alike all Akshaya Patra kitchens, the Telangana kitchens strictly adhere to hygiene and cleanliness standards in all its kitchen processes too. To improve productivity and efficiency of operational processes, Kaizen, Continuous Improvement Projects and Six Sigma methodologies are a part of a Telangana’s kitchen operations.

The kitchens of Telangana feature all the aspects of centralised kitchens such as cauldrons, trolleys, rice chutes, grinding machines, RO plants, and the like. Each of the kitchens has dedicated customised delivery vehicles to transport cooked meals to all beneficiary schools. The NGO in Hyderabad makes use of biogas briquettes and solar power as form of fuel and energy to operate the kitchen.

Menu of Telangana kitchens

Akshaya Patra has designed its meal menu to suit the local taste so that children enjoy their meal to the utmost. In line with the same, some of the menu items served to children in Telangana are: rice, lemon rice, sambar (a mixed vegetable and lentil curry), sundal (a South Indian dish, a dry legume-lentil preparation spiced, tempered, along with fresh coconut), pappu (a type of South Indian lentil curry), tomato pappu, vegetable biryani (a popular rice dish), and vegetable korma (an Indian dish made with vegetables and yogurt)

Socio-developmental initiatives

Besides providing mid-day meal, the Hyderabad kitchen is also involved in various socio-developmental initiatives to ensure betterment of the beneficiaries and the society. Some of the initiatives are:

  • Conducting awareness programmes
  • Life skills programme
  • Scholarship programme
  • Anganwadi Feeding
  • Feeding expecting and lactating mothers

As a mid-day meal NGO, Akshaya Patra wants to multiply its reach so that many more children receive the advantages of mid-day meal scheme. For this, the NGO operates in a Public-Private Partnership model, and while it is receiving aid from government, it also requires support and involvement of the civil society. Partake in the Foundation’s endeavour of providing ‘unlimited food for education’. Choose to donate to charity by either contributing funds online, sponsoring a school for a year or by donating a meal delivery vehicle. Your one contribution can make a huge difference in a child’s life. And, did you know that you can feed a child for the entire year with just Rs. 950!

How you can make a difference this new year

It’s been over a week since we entered 2018. And, most of us would have strictly tried to stick to our New Year resolutions. Most popular among them, of course, are those relating to diet and weight loss.

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Most of us would have probably started slacking off on the resolutions to exercise every day or go for a walk every day. While looking for a resolution, why not look for something that you believe you can stick with, instead of doing something that you know is easy to not stick to.

It’s still not too late to start off on a resolution. Why not resolve to donate to charity this year. You could do so by contributing for the causes supported by The Akshaya Patra Foundation. By opting for regular payments, you will be happy that you are able to stick to the resolution and, the best of all, contribute to a worthy cause.

Impact from Reach

Akshaya Patra’s Mid-Day Meal today reaches over 1.6 million children across the said 12 states in the country. The children are supplied from 34 kitchens from 12 states.

A mere Rs 950 can feed a school-going child for a whole year. Imagine, the impact such a small amount can have.

The change that it can bring out in the life of a child by guaranteeing he/she can stay at school and not worry about lunch ensures that the child can stay focused on the task at hand, that of learning.  This is perhaps the biggest of the advantages of mid-day meal scheme.

The funds needed to support the growing movement, no less, can in fact be boosted. This can ensure that the children continue to enjoy wholesome meals every day. The Foundation has been tech-savvy. It has taken to online fundraising to stay with the times so that you can be part of the movement.

Less Obvious Benefits of the Mid-day Meal Scheme

While the primary objectives of Mid-day Meal Programme are to avoid classroom hunger, improve school enrolment and attendance, and address the issue of malnutrition, the benefits of this scheme go well beyond these objectives.

The Mid-day Meal Scheme (MDMS) in its full-fledged form was implemented in 2004 to address two key issues: hunger and education. As a part of this scheme, a wholesome meal is provided to all children in the 6 to 14 age group studying in government and government-aided schools, making nutritious meal a reality for children who otherwise can’t afford a square meal.

Mid day meal

With the implementation of this scheme, it became easier for the authorities to convince people to send their children to school. Children, for their part, were more than eager to come to school, as a result of which school enrolment and attendance improved. It also helped in solving the problem of classroom hunger—one of the main reasons for lack of concentration in school children.

Government School Children

Over the years, the Mid-day Meal Scheme has done a fair bit to eradicate hunger and promote education, but these are not the only two areas where the scheme has helped. There exist other areas where the indirect impact of the same has been felt.

It Promotes Socialisation

Happy Children

Among the less-known advantages of mid-day meal scheme, one of the most important is the fact that it fosters the habit of eating together in children. The sight of all children coming together every afternoon for their meal is a sight to treasure. This intermingling improves unity among them. You can never stress enough on the importance of socialisation in India. The ambitious mid-day meal programme has helped ensure that caste, religion, or other similar factors don’t come in between children and education.

It Provides Employment Opportunities

Akshaya Patra Decentralized Kitchen

The Mid-day Meal Programme is the largest school meal programme in the world, feeding over 120 million children of over 1 million schools. But obviously, an operation of this scale will require a huge workforce. According to the data put forth by the Government, the Programme employs around 2.6 million people across the country as cooks and helpers.

school_kids_for_Mid_Day_meal

Besides the cooks and helpers hired by schools, there are several individuals who are employed by the NGOs who have got into a public-private partnership (PPP) with the Government to implement this scheme. The Akshaya Patra Foundation, which feeds over 1.5 million school children across ten states of India, hires about 6300 people. The not-for-profit organisation based out of Bengaluru also operates two decentralised kitchens where women self-help groups (SHGs), who have a better idea of the local palette, are employed.

Other Benefits

The guidelines put forth by the National Programme of Nutritional Support to Primary Education (NP-NSPE), state that the Government should ‘mobilize community support and promote public-private partnership for the programme’ wherever possible.

Yet another less-known benefit of the mid-day meal scheme is that it helps the local economy as perishable commodities, like vegetables, dals, oil, etc., are purchased from the local market.

Chopped Vegetables

In essence, the Mid-day Meal Programme has done a lot for the children of our country. However, considering the vast size of our country, we understand that there’s a lot to be done. If we are to achieve this, we need to work together; all of us, Central and state governments, partnering NGOs, communities, and every single stakeholder.

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Akshaya Patra has been working in this field for more than 15 years now, so we can say we can confidently say we have enough experience and expertise required to take things ahead. What we need is your support through online donation to ensure that more children reach school and script their own future.