Akshaya Patra turns 14 and we’re taking a look back at our journey thus far!
Born of the simple thought to end classroom hunger, the organisation’s vision that ‘no child in India shall be deprived of education because of hunger’ has now snowballed into a movement that has touched the lives and hearts of people all over the country and beyond.
With humble beginnings feeding just 1,500 children across 5 schools in the year 2000, today Akshaya Patra feeds over 1.4 million children across 10,661 Government and Government-aided schools across India on every school day. Headquartered in Bangalore the Foundation runs 23 kitchens in 10 states of India, and has a presence in the U.S. and U.K. too.
Akshaya Patra has crossed some huge milestones in the past 14 years. Some of them are:
- 2000 – Launches the feeding programme with just 1,500 children in 5 schools across Bangalore
- 2001 – The Akshaya Patra feeding programme gains momentum with the mid-day meal becoming compulsory in Government schools.
- 2002 – The technologically advanced roti making machine is introduced in the Vrindavan kitchen.
- 2003 – The Government of Karnataka invites Akshaya Patra to partner with it to supply the mid-day meals in the state.
- 2004 – Akshaya Patra expands to Hubli, Jaipur, Mangalore and Mysore too.
- 2005 – Introduces a decentralised kitchen in Baran to reach remote areas of India.
- 2006 – Harvard Business School does a case study on Akshaya Patra’s operations processes.
- 2007 – Opens more kitchens at Nayagarh, Bhilai, Gandhinagar and a second kitchen in Bangalore.
- 2008 – Becomes the first Indian NGO to comply with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS).
- 2009 – Serves up 500 million cumulative meals.
- 2010 – Guwahati kitchen is opened establishing a presence in the north east.
- 2011 – Opens a centralised kitchen in Chennai.
- 2012 – Akshaya Patra serves its billionth meal.
- 2013 – Ranked 23rd in The Global Journal list of top 100 NGOs in the world, and opens the Jodhpur kitchen.
- 2014 – Opens kitchens at Cuttack and Rourkela in Odisha.
Aside from these milestones Akshaya Patra has also received huge accolades for excellence in communications, operations process, food safety and financial reporting. The Foundation received the Gold Shield Award from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) for excellence in financial reporting five years in a row, gaining a place in the ICAI hall of fame – the first NGO to ever do so. Akshaya Patra has also received three consecutive LACP (League of American Communications Professionals) Vision Gold Awards, and was awarded the CII National Award for Food Safety by the Confederation of Indian Industry amongst many others.
The past 14 years have seen huge success and growth for the organisation, but there is a long way to go. Looking ahead, the plans are firmly underway to keep the Foundation motoring on course to fulfil its mission of reaching 5 million children by 2020.
But in order to reach that goal we need your help. So join us in our fight to provide food for education to the children of India. Together we can end classroom hunger!