Diwali is the biggest festival celebrated by Indians across the globe. It is considered as a high point of India’s festive season. The hallmarks of this season are themes of good versus evil, admiration of Indian culture, and—most importantly—the experience of giving to friends and family.
On the occasion of Diwali, it is a long-standing tradition in India to give and receive gifts from one another. Diwali brings abundance, love and respect, and hence, the giving and receiving of gifts during Diwali symbolises camaraderie and community among individuals.
It’s that wonderful time of year again, when people enjoy wonderful time with friends and family. However, the truth is that for many of Indian children who struggle and face lack of access to healthcare and education, Diwali is just another day. These youngsters reside on the periphery of society. The COVID-19 pandemic has only made things worse for these kids, making them worse than vulnerable in the current predicament.
These children depend on us for support. And what better time to extend a helping hand to them than this festive season. This Diwali, your contribution to PM Poshan Abhiyan (previously known as the Mid-Day Meal Programme) will enable us to reach more disadvantaged and vulnerable children in India and include them in our programmes focusing on resilience development, education, nutrition, protection, and healthcare. It can gift a smile and inspire children to hope for a brighter year and provide some respite to their current circumstances.
So this Diwali, let kindness rule the hearts. Feed the hungry and come forward to make a donation to Akshaya Patra – one of the leading NGOs in India that supports food and education of children, runs various programmes, the core of which is the Mid-Day Meal Programme (MDM) or the PM Poshan Abhiyaan.
PM Poshan Abhiyaan (previously known as Mid-Day Meal Programme)
The Akshaya Patra Foundation serves hot and nutritious lunch to 2 million Government school children every school day through the PM Poshan Abhiyaan (previously known as Mid-Day Meal Programme), across 14 States and 2 Union Territories in India. These meals are prepared and distributed from 65 locations across the country.
For over 21 years, the Foundation has battled to alleviate hunger in the classroom, encouraging marginalised children to get an education and aspire for a brighter future. When you donate to feed the children, the meals act as an incentive for these children to attend school every day, thus increasing attendance and enrolment. The meals also encourage them to continue their education.
The Joy of Hot Meals
She missed the joy of being carefree around friends and teachers at school and also the nutritious midday meal. Now that schools have reopened, Aishwarya can’t stop smiling as she’s back with her friends, teachers and has lots of fun. She says: “I used to miss my friends during the lunch hour but now we can enjoy our midday meal together. I love the days when they serve sambar rice for lunch.”
When Determination and Nutrition Come Together
Given his family’s financial position, Nasir thanks The Akshaya Patra Foundation for providing mid-day meals to him from Class 5 to Class 10. Nasir was inspired by his school staff and Akshaya Patra to pursue his aspirations after completing his 10th Boards. He received a scholarship from the Foundation’s AVSAR Scholarship Program to pursue his dream of becoming a CA. He recently passed his examinations and is now a certified CA. He expresses gratitude to his parents, teachers, Akshaya Patra and friends for believing in him. He wishes to work in the manufacturing or fast-moving consumer goods industries, with the goal of eventually starting his own firm.
Celebrate Diwali differently this year by going above and beyond for the less fortunate. Make a contribution to enable them to smile and make their lives happier. The satisfaction of enhancing young people’s lives is always unmatched!
Gift a Smile this Diwali. Share the joy of this festive occasion!