The Akshaya Patra Foundation is a secular, not-for-profit organization that provides nutritious midday meals to over 2 million government school children in 20,000 schools across 15 states and 2 union territories in India every day. We work closely with the Department of Food Sciences at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and The National Institute of Health and Family Welfare in India to design a vegetarian menu that meets the nutritional needs of growing children. Our menu is carefully crafted to cater to local preferences and is continuously optimized to improve taste and nutrition.
Many of the children who attend Akshaya Patra schools come from low-income families who typically earn less than $2.00 per day and are unable to afford basic necessities such as vegetables, grains, and milk. Our program ensures that these children have access to a balanced and nutritious meal every day. The meal usually consists of three items, with dessert served once a week. We also supplement our meals with peanut butter paste and fortified rice to improve the caloric and nutrient value.
We believe that no child should go hungry, so we provide unlimited food and encourage second and third helpings. Often, younger siblings of students come to school at mealtime or students take leftovers home with them. We are committed to providing a healthy and nutritious meal to each child every day, giving them the energy and nourishment they need to focus and learn in the classroom.