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Fellowship Programme Benefits at Akshaya Patra

Akshaya Patra Fellowship

Fellowship programme is a short or long-term engagement that can last from few months to few years where an individual referred to as a ‘fellow’ gets the opportunity to focus on their professional development. This programme is often sponsored by a specific organisation that is looking at expanding leadership in their related field.

Akshaya Patra Fellowship Programme

The Akshaya Patra Foundation recently introduced its Fellowship Programme in India. With this programme, the Foundation aims to provide a platform for young leaders and future social entrepreneurs to hone their skills in the social sector and thereby benefit millions of children. This is the Foundation’s first fellowship programme.

How will you benefit from the Fellowship Programme?

First, this fellowship programme will give you an opportunity to be a part of the top NGO in India. Second, you will be a fellow of the first batch of the Akshaya Patra’s Fellowship Programme. Third, it is a paid fellowship programme encompassing a host of training and activities for an all-inclusive development of the fellow. Here is an overview of what you will receive as a fellow of this programme:

• Training on learning and development, awareness on health, nutrition, and WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene), and soft skills development;
• A platform to experience leadership skills such as people-management, public-speaking, conflict resolution, relationship building, time management, problem solving and more;
• An opportunity to be a part of the leading team of a project, and upon successful completion, you will get a chance to present your project to the top management of the Foundation;
• An exceptional leadership journey constructively impacting your learning curve;
• On successful completion of the fellowship programme, you will receive a Fellowship Certificate;
• Last but not least, you will get the noble opportunity to impact the lives of millions of children.

How will Akshaya Patra benefit?

Over the past 17 years of being a mid-day meal NGO, Akshaya Patra has been striving to extend the benefits of mid-day meals to maximum number of children across the country. For this, it has undertaken various initiatives and has also received support and goodwill of government and donors. With this fellowship programme, Akshaya Patra aims at grooming and guiding future leaders who will enable expansion of the mid-day meal programme resulting in a nourished and educated India. This fellowship programme will help the Foundation tread many steps towards providing unlimited food for education to achieve its vision of ‘No child in India shall be deprived of education because of hunger.’

Apply Now

A noble opportunity is knocking at your door. It will open up avenues to improve many young lives thereby enriching your humanitarian trait and uplifting the society manifold. Be among the first graduates of the first batch of the Akshaya Patra Fellowship Programme. Apply for fellowship now!

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Our Enthusiastic Intern Tells Us Why We Are A Great Place To Work – Part 5

Poonam Sharma – Intern

Poonam Sharma interned with Akshaya Patra for 14 weeks as part of her MBA course. Here she shares her experience with The Foundation.

Summing up my months of experience into few paragraphs was a difficult task for me… Even more challenging is thinking about ending my internship with Akshaya Patra… With numerous experiences here at Akshaya Patra, it took me hours of brainstorming to select a few memorable ones over the others to give them shape through words…

Living a dream in reality is not meant for everyone, but for me it was happening for the past 14 weeks. Akshaya Patra was not just a work place for me; it was an emotion, a dream that turned into reality. Ever since I did my first social work, the feeling I experienced, always created an urge in me to work for an NGO, and the same came true, by joining this organization.

Daily Grooves: Past few days were a completely different experience for me, not only professionally but also on personal front. The 2-day induction gave us a complete insight about how the organization runs. Apart from this, the people I met, interacted or worked with, everyone had something new in store for me. Before coming here, I had a vague idea about doing something in marketing and working here made my career directions clearer. But more than getting a better direction, I learnt a lot. Working under my mentor was a great gaining experience, from the very basics of digital marketing to the major analytics parts, she made it very easy for me to grab and understand each concept.

A Big Exposure: Apart from this on-desk office work, Akshaya Patra also gave me an opportunity to work off-desk, by volunteering for their event “Giving Every Dream A Chance”. It is a programme which flourishes the dream of the beneficiary school children of Akshaya Patra, and gives their dream a platform, a mentor and a direction. The same event also gave me a chance to interact with beneficiary children, know their dreams, coordinate the event, and meet and interact with new people. For the same, I would like to thank the Programme Management Team comprising of Vishwas BV, Arun and Nilakshi Kar for having given me this opportunity.

Pic with Beneficiary children
Selfie with beneficiary children of ‘Giving Every Dream A Chance’ initiative

A Worth Visit: It’s always great when you get to know someone personally, and it’s even greater when the other person’s story touches your life. Same happened during my visit to one of the beneficiary school of Akshaya Patra. Talking to students about their lives, covering their stories, knowing them personally, impacted me a lot, as few stories were really joyful and few really went through strenuous roads to make their dreams hard earned. These stories are not only just felt by the children, even the school teachers had a lot to share about their proud students, about the noble work of Akshaya Patra, and how they and children loved what Akshaya Patra does.

School visit
A visit to Akshaya Patra beneficiary school
Fellow interns
My fellow intern conducting an interactive session with children
with Akshaya Patra beneficiaries
My fellow interns and me with Akshaya Patra beneficiaries
mid-day meals
We served mid-day meals to children

Work at Ease: Working in Akshaya Patra didn’t feel like working in an office. The lovely and joyous people always gave the place a work from home feel. The most special gesture of all the men at Akshaya Patra was giving every woman a flower with utmost respect on Women’s Day, making us feel special. From Satish Anna (Housekeeping Staff) in office to even Makarand Sir (Learning & Development Head), everyone around is so welcoming that I never felt like I have been working away from my comfort zone. The Akshaya Patra Foundation has been awarded “The great place to work” two years in a row, and it totally deserves it for the way it has been to me, personally.

My Gratitude: The words poured out are never enough, for the way you actually feel about something so close to your heart. As I leave, I would like to thank numerous unthankable people around me, for having given me this chance, and many more, who stood by me while I was living it. This has been an extremely great learning experience.

For those who are still reading my story till here, I would like to thank them too, and would request to support Akshaya Patra in their vision of “No child in India shall be deprived of education because of hunger”. And for those who are looking forward to working with Akshaya Patra, remember to always be friendly around here, work hard and ask questions. As you never know asking even a smallest of doubt, might give you the answer to the biggest and the most unsolvable question of your life!


Part 1  Part 2  Part 3  Part 4

To apply for internship with The Akshaya Patra Foundation, you can contact us on hr.helpdesk@akshayapatra.org

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Our Enthusiastic Interns Tell Us Why We Are A Great Place To Work – Part 4

NGO internship experience

The Akshaya Patra Foundation was certified as a Great Place to Work by Great Place to Work® Institute. Apart from employees, our interns play a major role in making the place what it is. They share their experience with us.

abhay intern at Akshaya Patra

Q. Why did you choose this Organization?
A. One of the reasons why I’ve chosen to become a lawyer is to give back to the society that I’m a part of and Akshaya Patra provided me with an opportunity to do precisely that. The organisation being the largest Mid-Day Meal programmes in the country working towards the eradication of malnutrition and thereby increasing access to education among the underprivileged allows me to precisely that.

Q. How is your typical day like?
A. Well my regular day would start at 10 and it would involve reviewing the activities that would be done throughout the day and then we would get down to business. Work involves researching and identifying potential donors which engage in CSR. Once a comprehensive list has been drawn up, the next task involves pointing out the specific individual within the company who handles these functions. Once this has been done, the next step would be making the cold call to the concerned individual in order to establish a relationship.

This goes on till we break for lunch at 1 where we eat a great meal courtesy from Akshaya Patra.
Work then resumes from 2 and them we keep working till 6:30 after which we conclude.

Q. What are the challenges you faced so far? How did you overcome them?
A. I believe one of my biggest challenges was managing my time and adhering to set and strict deadlines. As a member of a corporate work space, it was important that I learnt to manage my time efficiently and I overcame this challenge by drawing up a time table for myself strictly adhering to it which worked for me.

Q. Any memorable moment you had at TAPF? What did you like most about interning here?
A. I believe one of the best things about working at TAPF would be the work environment and the amazing people who worked there making my entire internship memorable. Everyone made me feel welcome and as one of their own making my work experience that much more enjoyable and productive.

Q. Why do you think Akshaya Patra is a ‘Great Place to Work’?
A. I believe that TAPF is a Great Place to Work for multiple reasons, ranging from the amazing work atmosphere that it provides, friendly co-workers, a top management that constantly works towards making your work experience that much more comfortable. Every day is a new experience with new challenges and there is a great sense of team spirit which allows for more opportunities to take on these challenges head on as a team and reaching towards more viable solutions.


Anshu intern at Akshaya Patra

Q. Why did you choose this Organization?
A. I chose it because The Akshaya Patra Foundation is one of the well-known organizations in Bangalore.

Q. How’s your typical day like?
A. It started with my work being assigned by my mentor. We got a lunch break at 1 and would break for tea at around 11:30.

Q. What are the challenges you faced so far? How did you overcome them?
A. My experience at The Akshaya Patra Foundation is something that is extremely special and important to me, as it was the first time that I worked as an intern. My mentor Bala, was extremely supportive of me and made sure that I got all the help that I required in overcoming every challenge,

Q. Any memorable moment you had at TAPF? What did you like most about interning here?
A. After making over 200 follow up and cold calls each day, associating and starting conversation with multiple corporates, setting a couple of meetings, I believe that I’ve achieved a tremendous amount of learning experience which has helped me at a personal level.

Q. Why do you think Akshaya Patra is a ‘Great Place to Work’?
A. I’m beyond thankful to The Akshaya Patra Foundation for giving me this opportunity to intern with them and contribute my bit towards the idea and motive of the foundation, that I believe in too.

Part 1    Part 2    Part 3

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Our Enthusiastic Interns Tell Us Why We Are A Great Place To Work – Part 3

Internship at Akshaya Patra

The Akshaya Patra Foundation was certified as a Great Place to Work by Great Place to Work® Institute. Apart from employees, our interns play a major role in making the place what it is. They share their experience with us.

DIA-intern-Akshaya Patra

Q. Why did you choose this organisation?
A. I chose it because The Akshaya Patra Foundation is one of the well-known organisations in Bangalore. I also wanted to work with an organisation that focused on improving the lives of children.

Q. How was your typical day like?
A. It would start with my mentor assigning me work for the day. We would get a break for tea at around 11:30 a.m., lunch break at 1 p.m., and wrap our day by 4 p.m.  We got a lunch break at 1 and would break for tea at around 11:30.

Q. What were the challenges you faced? How did you overcome them?
A. This was my first experience as an intern and my mentor guided me at every step, from working on social media to doing write-ups, and editorials. There were no such challenges.

Q. Any memorable moment you had at TAPF? What did you like most about interning here?
A. I had the opportunity of visiting one of the schools and interacted with the children and teachers and it was a memorable day.

Q. Why do you think Akshaya Patra is a ‘Great Place to Work’?
A. Akshaya Patra has a healthy work environment and my mentor was extremely helpful. Alongside learning new things, I enjoyed working at TAPF.


AMIRTHA-intern-Akshaya Patra

Q. Why did you choose this organisation?
A. Akshaya Patra is an organisation which started off with a goal to feed a few hundred underprivileged students but  feeds millions of children today, with a very wide networking system. I wanted to work with an organisation that works for the betterment of children’s lives as well as one that would give me exposure to the functioning of an NGO.

Q. How’s your typical day like?
A. My day would start off with a light conversation with my mentor and then I would be assigned my work, with which if I had any difficulty I would approach my mentor.

Q. What were the challenges you faced? How did you overcome them?
A. This was my first internship so I had trouble in drafting a formal write-up while putting forth my message in an interesting way, but my mentor gave me tips and guided me the whole way.

Q. Any memorable moment you had at TAPF? What did you like most about interning here?
A. While working on a project, I got an opportunity to visit one of the government schools and interact with the children and teachers, it was the most memorable day of my internship.

Q. Why do you think Akshaya Patra is a great place to work?
A. TAPF has a very friendly yet professional work environment and my mentor was extremely helpful and knowledgeable. Besides this, I enjoyed the lunch.

Part 1    Part 2

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Volunteer to make a difference

International volunteer day

December is a good time to look back upon the year that’s gone by. This makes December 5 an apt day to be International Volunteer Day. Various volunteer institutions and individual volunteers, understanding the need for their contribution to society, have selflessly been a part of various volunteer activities throughout the year.

This reminds us of the recent floods in Gorakhpur and Gujarat, where the contribution by various volunteers has been commendable. They have helped the denizens cope with the damage caused by the disaster.

International Volunteer Day for Economic and Social Development, also known an International Volunteer Day (IV Day), is a great day to recall all of their contributions. It is a day dedicated by the United Nations since 1985 to give a people an opportunity to make visible contributions.

Theme this year:

The theme for 2017 – ‘Volunteers Act First. Here. Everywhere.’ recognises volunteers as the first person available to help times of crisis. They ensure their presence around us in times of need, save lives and support people. They brave dangers to help others. They are driven by the will to make a difference to those in need of assistance. This year, the day recognises contribution of such individuals and organisations.

Why volunteering?

The contribution by volunteers help in implementing new global goals. The development can be sustainable and mobilise and engage Governments and communities. It’s not about money all the time. While the individual and community benefits from the effort put in the volunteers, it can have a lasting impact on the progress of the individual themselves.

• Wellbeing

Volunteering for a cause makes a person feel a sense of accomplishment. According to The Corporation for National and Community Service, volunteering improves psychological and physical health. It helps them build social networks.

• Resume building

Such activities help in building resume. The mention of these in your resume demonstratesthat volunteer work is also an important part of your resume. A history of volunteering activities in your resume shows your willingness to work for the betterment of the society.

• Positive parenting

Volunteer activities are important to teach children the importance of sharing and caring among children. Developing these emotions in children well in advance can make them responsible individuals.

Akshaya Patra’s role in social development

With a mission to ensure that no child in India is deprived of education due to hunger, the organisation performs a selfless task of delivering freshly-made nutritious meals to over 1.6 million children across India. The Foundation runs the largest NGO-run school lunch programme.

The meals are cooked in our 34 kitchens in 32 locations across India. The dishes are prepared in a way that the meal meets the nutritional guidelines prescribed by the Government under the Mid Day Meal Scheme. This initiative ensures that the children get nutritious meals once in a day so that they turn out to be healthy individuals.

The programme has been running successfully with support from the Central and State Governments.

Be a volunteer

The Foundation invites individuals and corporates to be a part of the cause by volunteering with us. You can either be physically present or raise funds for the cause online.

You can help the kitchen staff prepare meals by cutting vegetables. You can help in offloading the vegetables at the kitchen or help the staff in loading the trucks with cooked meals. You can serve children in school and organise some activities for children at their schools.

If time is a constraint, you can help the Foundation by sharing information about the cause on your social media networks. You can start a fundraising campaign on our website.

Volunteer with The Akshaya Patra Foundation to ensure that our future generation grows up to be healthy and well-educated.

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Akshaya Patra’s takes considerable measures for water conservation and sustainable practices

Water-Conservation-WorldWaterDay

All life-force on the planet is sustained by that vital element of nature – water. Water scarcity and lack of potable water have become grave concerns, thanks primarily to exploding human population and climate change. The problem is even more severe in the summer season, as heat scorches the earth. The need to conserve, recycle and reuse water should sit at the top of the list of priorities of governments, organisations and individuals, if this life-sustaining force is to be available to one and all. At Akshaya Patra, we have numerous processes in place to ensure that the water we use is clean and that we use it efficiently.

Feeding over 1.6 million children across India is a formidable task and we ensure that we make the most economical use of water. The activities in our kitchens that make use of water are preprocessing foodgrains, vegetables and pulses; cooking, packing and distribution of food; cleaning of vessels and equipment; cleaning vehicles and cleaning and maintaining a hygienic environment inside the kitchen. The technologies we employ to ensure safe water are:

  • Chlorine dosing – For chlorination of water to purify it
  • Multi-grade filters – Where water is purified by passing it through numerous layers of filter media
  • Micron filers – Where water is filtered using screens that have microscopic holes in them
  • Reverse Osmosis (RO) systems – They purify water by making use of a semipermeable membrane, employing the principle of reverse osmosis to remove molecules, ions and larger particles
  • Ultraviolet (UV) treatment – Where ultraviolet light is used to disinfect water and eliminate harm-causing waterborne microorganisms
  • Ion exchange water treatment for steam production – Which gets rid of undesirable ionic contaminants in water

Water consumption in our kitchens too is reduced with the help of vegetable washing machines, rice washers, steam cooking, high-pressure jets for equipment and vehicle cleaning, vessel cleaning machines and vessel cleaning showers with tanks.

We also conduct regular training and awareness programmes for our employees to create awareness about water management and conservation. Wastewater generated in our kitchens is recycled. This recycled water is reused for gardening. Our kitchens, besides using renewable energy such as solar energy and biogas, also harvest rainwater. Thus, ensure that we minimise wastage and usage of water in our kitchens and grow in a sustainable manner. We will continue making intensive efforts to conserve, recycle and reuse water in the future to ensure sustainable development.

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Unlock Smiles of young children with Akshaya Patra!

UnlockSmilesbyAkshayaPatra

What puts a beaming smile on your face? The sight of kids playing in the park? Your favourite song on the radio? The first rains? For many children in India, what makes them smile bright is a wholesome, nutritious meal every day. The Akshaya Patra Foundation, through its Mid-Day Meal Programme, has been ensuring that over 1.6 million children in 13,529 schools across 11 states in India smile with the satisfaction of having eaten a hot, wholesome meal. With our initiative – Unlock Smiles – we are handing over the key to revealing smiles of children to you. How, you ask? With the simple click of a button!

Akshaya Patra is currently marching towards its immediate mission of feeding 5 million children by 2020. We need all your support to ensure that children receive a full meal at lunch every day. As part of Unlock Smiles, all you have to do is visit the webpage and click on the smileys to unlock them. For every smiley you click on, you choose to sponsor a child for a whole school year. You can click on as many smileys you want, to sponsor an equal number of school children for the year. Isn’t the opportunity to feed a smile to children across India wonderful? So, get unlocking and reveal the pearly whites of happy children!

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Give India’s children a happy New Year 2017!

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Adieu 2016, welcome 2017! The New Year is upon us – a time for new beginnings, forgetting past sorrows and imbibing the lessons learnt previously for a wiser tomorrow. It is also the time to count your blessings and be thankful for them. The dawn of New Year 2017 is a wonderful time to make a difference to the lives of India’s school children. Just as you have hopes and dreams for a brand new year, they too have New Year wishes. These primarily include wanting to study well, so that they fulfill their ambitions and secure their futures.

Akshaya Patra strives hard to end classroom hunger and feed the dreams of young school kids across the nation. It gives wings to the hopes of children with its unlimited food for education initiative, by means of a wholesome, nutritious school lunch every day. This is what helps in drawing them to school day after day, every year. Currently, The Foundation feeds over 1.6 million children, across 11 states in India, expanding its footprint in India every successive year. Its New Year resolution is to bring many more children under its wings and feed 5 million children by 2020.

The fight against classroom hunger is a collective one and it needs more soldiers to join it every year. If a future free from hunger and full of education can be envisioned, it can be achieved. Why not resolve this year to join the cause of ‘food for education’ and put your best foot forward to ensure that India’s school kids are adequately nourished? Donate now to the cause! We also would also like to know the New Year resolutions you have made to do your bit for a hunger-free India. Tell us the same in the ‘comments’ section below. You can also leave New Year wishes for our beneficiaries!

From everyone at The Akshaya Patra Foundation, we wish you a healthy, happy and prosperous New Year 2017!

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Photo Contest 2016 | Click a Smile and Share

rajughoshclickasmileakshayapatra

Akshaya Patra’s online photography contest 2016 is now open for all! Click a smile and participate!

Click-a-Smile is our annual photography competition that has been acknowledged by about 80 countries around the world! Created with love towards children, this photography contest is a platform for all you shutterbug lovers to exhibit your talent through a meaningful photograph.

All you have to do is capture a smile and submit the photograph before the deadline – December 23, 2016! The theme is Child’s Smile.

How does it work?
Just like every year, Click-a-Smile calls for entries from all walks of life. If you already have a photograph of a smiling child (or children), you can share it with us right away! If you do not have any, get adventurous and explore – step out of your abode and capture the smiles of children; it could be in a park, near a lake, a quiet street, school, or even a market! We are quite sure photographing children is absolutely fun.

Selection Process and Winners
Our panel consists of professional photographers who will review, shortlist and select. The top three winners will receive a trophy, certificate and a gift voucher. And the top 50 photographs will be showcased at Akshaya Patra’s annual photography exhibition with full credit to the photographer.

All photographs must be submitted here.

Here are few quick rules!

  • Image size should not exceed 4 MB and must have a minimum resolution of 800 pixels
  • Participants can submit up to three photographs
  • The photograph must be owned by the participant

For complete list of Click-a-Smile photo contest rules, click here.

Get inspired by winning photographs of Click-a-Smile 2015.

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Akshaya Patra – Enabling the creation of opportunities

obdisabilitybyakshayapatra

In the quest for equality, a society must ensure that its differently-abled citizens find much dignity, support and inclusiveness. To achieve this end and encourage a greater understanding of the issues faced by people with disabilities, International Day of Persons with Disabilities, an initiative of the United Nations (UN), is observed around the world on December 03.

As with every year, this year too, the day features a unique theme –‘Achieving 17 Goals for the Future We Want’. These are the 17 Sustainable Development Goals adopted by the UN, one of which seeks to reduce inequality and ‘by 2030, empower and promote the social, economic and political inclusion of all, irrespective of age, sex, disability, race, ethnicity, origin, religion or economic or other status.’

Akshaya Patra’s unlimited food for education initiative seeks to lead children to equal opportunities by ensuring that they don’t quit school on account of hunger and stay on to complete their education. Among over 1.7 million beneficiaries of the Foundation, there are many that are differently abled. In Telangana, there’s Sirisha, who has a hearing impairment. The young girl, who travels 2-3 km from home to school and back again, wants to become a police officer. Then, there is Afreen, also from Telangana, who suffers from a deformity in her right hand, which has rendered it immovable. She is encouraged by her sister, another Akshaya Patra beneficiary named Nousheen, to be positive and emerge strong, despite her condition.

The Foundation feeds many such differently abled and special-needs beneficiaries. The promise of a mid-day meal encourages them to attend school, study well and take active interest in its activities. The organisation wishes these special children every success and is confident that they are and continue to be an inspiration for many people across the world.

Donate to the cause of Food for Education and support the aspirations of children across India!

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