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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

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Celebrate for a Cause

Mothers are the pillars of strength


Have you noticed the brightness in her eyes when you laugh?
Have you felt the unrest in her when you are sick?
Have you sensed the pride in her when you succeed?
Have you seen her pray quietly when you step out of the door?
Have you watched trying her best to cheer you up on a rather gloomy day?
And, have you realised that she never asks anything in return
for all that she does for you each and every day?
That’s the grace of a Mother!

Mother’s love is the strongest, the most selfless of emotions. And, nothing in the world can be compared to it. Mother’s Day celebrated on May 13 this year (the second Sunday of May) celebrates the care, love, commitment, and strength of every mother. It is a day to salute the woman who has silently dedicated each day of her life to you.

Akshaya Patra has always had the pleasant opportunity to associate with mothers. Be it in the form of employees, mothers of beneficiaries, would-be mothers (through the feeding initiative of expecting and lactating mothers) or mothers of employees.

This Mother’s Day, we share a small story of a mother-son duo who advocates the significance of education.

Mother & Son

Naveen, an Akshaya Patra employee has been working in the organisation for the past one year as part of the Vehicle Maintenance Team. He ensures all vehicle-related issues are attended to and solved without any delay. While he was pursuing Diploma in Mechanical Engineering, a sudden financial crisis compelled him to discontinue his studies and seek for a job. It was then that he was referred to Akshaya Patra.

Acquainted with Akshaya Patra’s mission, Naveen was happy to join the Foundation. With a fulfilling job in hand, now Naveen not only takes care of his family but has also resumed his studies through correspondence.

When asked about the kind of relationship he shares with his mother, Naveen replied promptly,

My mother has always been very supportive of my education. She is a staunch believer that education is extremely important for a better life. And, so that I successfully complete my schooling, she always provided me with whatever I needed. She constantly encourages me to work towards my goals. My mother was deeply saddened that I had to discontinue my studies to help the family sail through the tough times. But, now that I have resumed my studies, she is happy.

Hearing this, Lalithamma, Naveen’s mother added with moistened eyes,

I never knew my little son has grown up to be so mature.

Adding her opinion on schooling and her thoughts about Naveen she said,

Schooling is very important for every child. School gives children the opportunity to mingle with other children. It is a place where they learn from each other and they become more social and more accepting. For this reason, I always strived to provide all that was needed for Naveen to complete his schooling. Agreed that times were not favourable, but I was totally disheartened when Naveen had to seek a job instead of completing his studies. But, probably it was God’s way of giving him a chance to work for a good cause. Today, I am a very proud and happy mother. My son is working with an organisation that provides food to school children. As a mother, I understand the importance of a good meal in a child’s life and the satisfaction of mother to see her child eat stomach full of food. It fills me with joy to see that while supporting the family, Naveen is also taking care of his studies.

Like Lalithamma and Naveen, all of us have our own special story. And, celebrating this special bond, Akshaya Patra wishes everyone a very Happy Mother’s Day!

Support the mother’s who wish their children to get proper education: Donate in honour of mother

Please use the below comment section to share your special ‘Mom & Me’ story. We would love to hear it!

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