Before I begin to write anything, I want you to watch this video:
Well, to put it simply, each child and I mean it literally; each child possesses a dream, a dream to achieve something, a dream to change their present to something better, a dream that someday their dream will come true. But, their dreams will turn into reality only when they have access to something as basic as a healthy food and the opportunity to attend school. And, it is no hidden fact that millions of children are denied these basic necessities!
So, why have I italicised healthy? Because it is important to understand that food may be the answer to hunger but healthy food is the only answer to ‘hidden hunger’. Yes, hidden hunger is a form of hunger that arises due to micro-nutrients deficiency in the diet. For instance, if a child eats a plate full of rice and potato, his stomach will get filled and he will no longer feel hungry. But, his diet lacks essential micro-nutrients like vitamins and minerals found in fruits, vegetables, pulses, and dairy and farm products. And, if the child continues to have such a diet, eventually he will suffer from hidden hunger resulting in ill health, impaired physical and cognitive development, and early death.
What’s the role of Corporates?
Nine established and renowned corporate giants: GlaxoSmithKline, PepsiCo, Nestle, Reliance Fresh, Viacom18, Facebook, Big FM PVR Cinemas and The Lalit Group of Hotels have in unison extended their wholehearted support for The Akshaya Patra Foundation’s ‘Feed the Future Now’ campaign. This campaign is aimed at garnering support from all sectors of the society – public, private, and civil; hence, it has provided an open platform for people from all walks of life to come out in full support of the issue called ‘hidden hunger’ so that together we can address it and solve it. Over the 17 years of service as mid-day meal NGO, Akshaya Patra has witnessed the impact of nutritious meals in the overall development of children which explains its motive behind the ‘Feed the Future Now’ campaign. And, the Corporates have pledged their support for the campaign from their respective realms of businesses.
Agreeing to the fact that children are the future and we have to take care of their health and education, renowned celebrities namely Shankar Mahadevan, Vivek Oberoi, Sanjeev Kapoor, and Sonali Bendre have joined hands with Akshaya Patra in this initiative. In support of the campaign, Vivek Oberoi was quoted saying, “We, as a country has had so many achievements at the global platform but hidden hunger still remains an obstacle to sustaining education and achieving one’s full potential. ‘Feed the Future Now’ aims to combat this issue and I am glad to pledge support to its mission of nourishing the future of India so that kids get a holistic upbringing, just like we all did.”
What can you and I do?
- You and I can rev up the ‘Feed the Future Now’ campaign by opting to donate for children.
- You and I can sponsor a school’s meal for the entire year.
- You and I urge our friends and associates to contribute to this campaign.
- You and I can suggest our workplaces to get involved with this campaign as part of Corporate Social Responsibility.
- You and I can support this campaign by sharing our pledge for it on our social media platforms.
- You and I can create our own micro-campaign and donate the proceeds towards ‘Feed the Future Now’ campaign.
In conclusion, The Akshaya Patra Foundation has given us a platform, the Corporate and celebrity supporters have given us a direction, and the dreams of children have given us a purpose. All that’s needed now is for us to start acting. Let’s not delay, because the very next moment is called future!