By Kerry Markey - Director, Grassroots Development and Media
As the holiday season quickly approaches I can't help but feel thankful and joyous at all we have been able to accomplish this year with the support of compassionate donors like you. Below are some highlights of what we have been up to since August 2012:
Akshaya Patra's Jaipur Kitchen launched the country's first ever bakery machine for the midday meal program. The machine is capable of producing 30,000 biscuits a day and will give added taste and variety in the mid day meal menu.
The month of August saw heavy rains in the city of Jaipur, Rajasthan, and surrounding areas, causing residents of the region to face flash floods, displacement and food insecurity. Thousands were rendered homeless and a few people were killed in the heavy downpour. At the request of district administration, the Akshaya Patra Foundation came to the rescue of the flood victims and distributed over 50,000 meals in the disaster affected areas.
Akshaya Thali Program has been launched in Uttar Pradesh in efforts to distribute free plates to all government schools. In rural areas, it is a common sight to see a group on children sharing a meal on one small plate. The Thali program will ensure that each child can enjoy their own meal and higher standards of hygiene are met.
Akshaya Patra stepped in, at the request of the Uttar Pradesh state government, and has announced plans to expand its operations in the state to Lucknow, Kanpur, Varanasi, Agra and Kannauj in efforts to tackle the states high malnutrition rate.
Akshaya Patra continues to serve a nuritious meal to nearly 1.4 million children DAILY and we are well on our way to reaching our goal of feeding 5 million children by 2020. Your support has enabled this growth and brought smiles of hope to the faces of deserving children. During the upcoming holidays, let us remember the Akshaya Patra children who have become part of our families and that each of us has made a commitment to ensure that hunger is not a barrier to education for them.
Here's hoping the holidays brings you and your family bright sparkles of contentment and peace that stay with you throughout the year!
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