Date(s) - 20/04/2021
4:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Title: Meals for All: The Miracle of Akshaya Patra
The unprecedented crisis triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic is not showing any signs of waning, with uncertainties plaguing multiple aspects of human life. In addition to the looming threat of Coronavirus, large sections of populations are facing food insecurity, loss of livelihood and other socio-economic issues due to this outbreak.
As the implementing partner of the Government of India’s flagship school feeding programme, the Mid-Day Meal (MDM) Scheme, Akshaya Patra works with the State Governments and UT Administrations to provide mid-day meals to children. Over the last 20 years, the Foundation has established a robust infrastructure and forged valuable partnerships, which enable it to serve over 1.8 million children in 13 states and one UT. Incidentally, the same infrastructure and partnerships have enabled the Foundation to undertake relief feeding during the ongoing pandemic outbreak to ensure food availability for vulnerable populations across the country.
Over the last 12 months, Akshaya Patra has served over 121 million meals to vulnerable populations in 19 states and one UT whilst working with the Government and donors. In this lecture, Shridhar Venkat – CEO of Akshaya Patra, will talk about the strategy adopted by the organisation to enhance its execution capabilities as per the need of the hour, mobilising resources and leveraging partnerships to ensure that food reaches the most vulnerable and underserved sections of society.
The pandemic has disrupted the ongoing efforts to keep pace with the targets of development goals. The number of people affected by various levels of food insecurity is expected to rise drastically in the post-COVID world. The Foundation’s feeding endeavours—the school feeding programme in particular—will have a crucial role to play in addressing this issue. A section of the lecture will be devoted to this aspect, focusing on efforts to upgrade feeding initiatives with evidence-based solutions focusing on food and nutrition security for children and communities.
The MDM Programme is a validation of the synergetic efforts of various stakeholders from the public sector and the private sector coming together. Akshaya Patra has drawn upon these synergetic efforts to ensure food security during the COVID-19 pandemic. The lecture will be a testament to these efforts.