Letter from Bibhash Chakrabarty, a volunteer of Akshaya Patra Foundation.
Akshaya Patra- the name which always reminds me of the happy smiling faces of the little angels in school uniforms. It is a unique organization feeding more than a million children every day reaching out even the remote corners of the country.
How can we ask a child to go to the school when he cannot even afford a meal? Parents often tend to sacrifice their children’s education as they cannot afford to meet their basic requirement of food. Akshaya Patra has an extremely focused objective of bringing back children to the schools by providing them unlimited food.
I have been supporting their cause only online until 9th of April 2010 when I got the opportunity to visit a school and see by myself how they actually make this mammoth program happen in reality. I was amazed to see almost hundred per cent attendance on the last day of the school when they don’t even have any class and the annual exams are over. We reached the school at around 11 in the morning and tried to interact with them. They were all eagerly waiting for the blue bus to come with the hot tasty sambar, rice and curd. One of them said ‘we have come only for the food today’ and she added ‘I am sad that the school is going to close tomorrow. I love coming to school because on those days I don’t have to worry about the food.’
And when the ‘Blue Bus’ came – it was a real treat to the eyes. Their face lit up the moment they saw the food carrier approaching the school.
It was completely gratifying to see the children enjoying the food to the fullest.
The day made me feel proud of my decision to be a part of The Akshaya Patra Foundation. And I believe that we can all do our bit to help them in their movement towards a hunger free nation.