Non-profit organisation that runs mid-day meal programmes across India – Akshaya Patra Foundation – has entered into an agreement with Cisco for the digitisation of their kitchens across seven locations in India to help it reach its goal of feeding 5 million children by 2020.
Akshaya Patra Foundation which is the world’s largest (non-profit) mid-day meal programme organizing firm, that serves food to over 1.66 million children from 13,958 schools across 12 states in India said that digitising kitchens and key offices will help them realise significant gains in productivity, scalability, and cost-efficiency.
“Small improvements in operational efficiency can have a big impact when you distribute at scale,” said Shridhar Venkat, Chief Executive Officer, The Akshaya Patra Foundation. “Currently most of the data collection and planning is manual; with a rapidly growing network of kitchens, the network platform we are putting in place today will help us in our digitisation journey by enabling real-time data collection, streamline kitchen production, distribution and supply chain. All of this will help us in our mission to reach more children,” he added.
As part of this agreement, Cisco will deploy an enterprise-grade network and collaboration suite connecting Akshaya Patra kitchens and their offices by enabling end-to-end IT and process digitisation.
The upgraded Akshaya Patra network will connect their offices in Bengaluru, Gurgaon, and field kitchens across seven locations – two in Bengaluru and one each in Lucknow, Vrindavan, Bellary, Guwahati, and Jigani on a single network – which will enable them to efficiently track their kitchen production, distribution, supply chain and logistics.
Through digitisation, Akshaya Patra will have faster and better connectivity in their field offices which is critical to the kitchen’s operational performance, and necessary to support virtual collaboration and knowledge sharing.
It will now be able to analyse and operationalise disparate sets of data in near real-time, helping them to improve the overall speed, security and responsiveness of the programme.
“Technology connects people in meaningful ways and has the power to create new opportunities and boost economic growth and well-being. Cisco is committed to supporting scalable and self-sustaining programs that use technology to address some of society’s biggest challenges. For the past 20 years, we have applied our technology and expertise to accelerate global problem solving and positively affect people, society, and the planet,” said Tae Yoo, Senior Vice President, Corporate Affairs, Cisco.
Cisco has been associated with Akshaya Patra since 2007 through employee giving, volunteering and disaster relief assistance and working on several different programmes.