A day with Bill Clinton at Akshaya Patra
It was a day of fun and interaction for Bill Clinton, Ex-President of The United States, as he visited The Akshaya Patra Foundation in Jaipur, Rajasthan and went to a beneficiary school thereafter on Wednesday, 17 July, 2014. Clinton was very appreciative of Akshaya Patra’s work and was awed by the functioning of the roti maker machine.
Clinton was welcomed by the Government School in Sanganer with a parade performed by the school students. He was then taken around the school. The students were thrilled to meet the Former President and talk to him. Some of the interaction with the students left him emotionally touched. The excited students also demonstrated some of their whizz tricks in Mathematics. A cultural programme was held in Clinton’s honour and the Ex-President was delighted to watch it.
He visited the centralised Akshaya Patra kitchen in Jaipur where the food is cooked and transported to schools, including Madrassas. “Such huge quantity of food prepared and served in efficient, healthy and sanitary manner is unbelievable,” Clinton said while addressing the students of the school.
The Clinton Foundation under the Clinton Global Initiative is raising awareness and motivating business houses, corporates and other entities to fund Akshaya Patra for running the mid-day meal programme. The programme, implemented by the Akshaya Patra Foundation with support from the Rajasthan Government feeds over lakh children in about 1,500 schools. The Foundation also reaches out to 15,000 infants in 298 Anganwadi centres and runs subsidised canteens for the socially and economically challenged in Jaipur alone. “This is the finest commitment made by the Clinton Foundation in its 10 years of existence. It is wonderful,” he said hoping that more business houses and organisations and agencies would participate in the programme.
Clinton said Caterpillar Foundation had already announced a contribution of $2 million to run a similar kitchen in Lucknow to feed 100,000 students. It will be functional in two months.