The Akshaya Patra Foundation (“Foundation”) and Wagh Bakri Foundation—the CSR arm of the Wagh Bakri Tea Group—collaborated to undertake COVID-19 relief activity in Gujarat by distributing Cooked Meals and Happiness Kits (containing grocery items). As of 16 July, 2021, 90,909 cooked meals have been served to vulnerable populations, such as daily-wage earners, migrant labourers, rough sleepers, etc., and over 3,636 Happiness Kits [amounting to 72,720 meal servings] have been distributed among Mid-Day Meal (MDM) Scheme beneficiaries in the state.
Speaking about the collaboration, Jaganmohan Krishna Dasa, Regional President, Gujarat, Akshaya Patra, said, “We are immensely grateful to the Wagh Bakri Foundation for supporting our food relief initiative in Gujarat. Their support added to the sustainability of thisendeavour, enabling us to reach out to those in need with cooked food and Happiness Kits with dry ration. Together, Wagh Bakri Foundation and Akshaya Patra have been able to create the impact that is vital to humanitarian efforts in such times of adversity.” He also thanked the Government of Gujarat and the Ministry of Education (MoE), Government of India, for placing their trust and confidence in the Foundation’s service over the years and providing the opportunity to serve people during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Commenting on this noble initiative, Mr. Paras Desai, Executive Director, Wagh Bakri Tea Group and Trustee, Wagh Bakri Foundation, said “India as a Country has always been resilient and the response of our countryto COVID-19 pandemic has once again proved this.Our Country is putting its all efforts to fight the pandemic, wherein, we as a responsible Corporate Citizen felt it our responsibility to participate in relief work for COVID-19 pandemicby way of distribution of Cooked Meals and Happiness Kits (containing grocery items), to help people to sustain in this Pandemic. Akshaya Patra Foundationwith such a noble vision to address classroom hunger and malnutrition in India, what they are doing for more than 20 years is phenomenal. Humbled to be a part of this initiative and we aim to continue our association in future as well. Thank you”
Akshaya Patra has been extending food relief in 19 states and one union territory (UT) since March 2020. In Gujarat and Dadra & Nagar Haveli, the initiative is being extended through the Foundation’s kitchens in Ahmedabad, Surat, Vadodara, Bhavnagar, Bhuj and Silvassa. It has been serving cooked meals and distributing essential groceries kits to vulnerable populations and providing Happiness Kits to MDM beneficiaries. Along with dry ration, Happiness Kits also contain basic hygiene products, such as toothbrush, soap and sanitary pads, to ensure children’s & their family’s health during these difficult times.
As of 15 June, 2021, Akshaya Patra has cumulatively served over 13.63 crore meals to vulnerable populations across 19 states and one UT. These include 6.71 crore cooked meals, 11.28 lakh food relief kits with essential groceries for 42/28 meal servings and 11.36 lakh Happiness Kits with dry ration for 20 meal servings, hygiene products and educational supplies.