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Our Mission & Objective

The WFP Trust for India works to eradicate hunger and malnutrition, with women and children being the focus. We collaborate with public, private sectors, and the government to contribute towards overall survival, awareness, and development of nutritionally vulnerable and food-insecure populations. This is done while achieving national goals under SDG 2: Zero Hunger. 


The Beginning

Former Prime Minister of India, late Mr. IK Gujral launched the WFP Trust for India and served as its first chairperson. The Trust continues to follow the path laid down by him for a hunger-free India as it seeks to be a catalyst in making this vision a reality. 


Our Board of Trustees

The WFP Trust for India has had a history of high-profile trustees.  


Rita Sarin


Rita Sarin is the Global Vice President & Country Director of The Hunger Project in India and leads a nationwide alliance of more than 40 organizations implementing strategies to empower women in local democracy. She has committed her life to igniting and sustaining the leadership sprit of elected women at the grassroots level in India.

Ms Sarin has had many successes channeling bilateral and multi-lateral partnerships and funding to strengthen the voice of grassroots women in local government and in society at large. In addition, she has successfully garnered the support of various government officials at all levels to broaden the scope of women’s role in local democracy as well as bridge the gap between the marginalized, poor and their government.

Prior to joining The Hunger Project, Ms Sarin served as a National Program Advisor for the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA), in India.

Ms Sarin also represents many international and national Boards which include Girls Not Brides UK, ActionAid India, PRIA, Mobile Creches and plays a crucial role in working on issues of governance, strategies and partnerships.


Vrinda Sarup, IAS (Retd)

Managing Trustee

Vrinda Sarup, IAS, (Retd) has over two decades of experience in development and social change. Her work is strongly focused on the education sector involving school development, vocational and higher/technical education, and skill development.  

Ms. Vrinda Sarup was Secretary, Food and Public Distribution in the Government of India before her retirement. She was instrumental in the implementation of India’s Right to Food Act and the digitisation of food distribution processes for the poor and vulnerable sections of the society. 

As a bureaucrat for over 35 years, Ms. Vrinda Sarup has crafted two major pan-India school education programmes, District Primary Education Programme (started in 1993-94) and the Sarva Siksha Abhiyan (rolled out in 2003-04). The two programmes are credited with changing the face of primary and elementary school education in India.  

She has also been instrumental in reorienting and redesigning vocational education in secondary/senior secondary schools in 2014 by making them more industry and employment-oriented.  

Ms. Vrinda Sarup has also held the post of Secretary and Principal Secretary in the Finance Department of the Uttar Pradesh government, India’s largest and most populous state.  


Ms. Vrinda Sarup’s has also worked closely with international development agencies, including the World  Bank, DFID of UK, UNICEF, the European Union and the World Food Programme. 


Neela Gangadharan, IAS (Retd)


Neela Gangadharan has held senior positions in policymaking and program implementation with the Kerala Government and the Government of India. She has held positions including Chief Secretary, Home Secretary and Agricultural Production Commissioner, and Secretary to Government of India and Minister (Agriculture) in the Embassy of India, Rome. 

Ms. Neela Gangadharan has represented India as the Alternate Permanent Representative (APR) in the UN agencies in Rome and was an active Member in all their Governing Bodies including the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) Council, Executive Board of International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and Executive Board of the World Food Programme (WFP), the FAO Finance Committee and Audit Committee of IFAD. She also served in the FAO’s headquarters in Rome as Chief Agricultural Policy Support for five years dealing with Agricultural Policy Support to developing countries.

As Secretary, Women & Child Development Ministry, Government of India, Ms. Neela Gangadharan was involved in the revamping of the Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) program which is possibly the largest government-led nutrition programme in the world. Post-retirement, she established and served as the first Chairperson of the Kerala State Commission for Protection of Child Rights.

While working in the UN, Ms. Neela Gangadharan coordinated and contributed to various policy studies and policy support programmes which included a project for the Farmers Commission of India on integrating agricultural markets in India. She also led the team from FAO for sector review and formulation of a Draft Agriculture Policy in the aftermath of civil war in Liberia and led a Norwegian funding programme on food security in seven developing countries. She is currently Member of the Administrative Reforms Commission of Kerala. 


Pooran Chandra Pandey


The founding CEO of ‘Dialogue of Civilizations Research Institute,’ a Berlin, Germany-based international think tank (2016-2018), a contributor to Springer Nature’s global encyclopedia on sustainable development goals (2020), and supplemental policy advisor to governments in China, Germany and Rwanda (2018 onwards), Pooran Chandra Pandey currently serves as Resident Representative of Climate Scorecard, a US Climate Policy think tank besides being a member of the board of United Nations World Food Programme Trust (2016 onwards).

He also chaired social audit committees of ACC Limited (2015-19) and Gujarat Ambuja Cement Limited (2018-19) besides continuing to hold visiting teaching and research assignments at UTS, Sydney, Nkafu Policy Institute, Cameroon, NIICE, Nepal, among others. Previously, he served in senior leadership positions at Nippon Denro Ispat, Bennett, Coleman and Company (The Times of India) and the United Nations. 

His professional work on issues related to sustainability, circular design, sustainable development, climate change and international treaties, environmental policies, multilateralism, international project collaboration, energy transition, private sector and development cooperation transcends geographies. His works have been published by Springer International, Bloomsbury, Sage, New Zealand Centre for Global Studies, Middle East Institute Asia Programme, Washington DC and First Monday, US. 

Pooran Chandra Pandey holds an MPhil degree in International Studies from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi besides being trained at Asian Productivity Organization, Japan (2003), United Nations in New York (2015), Swedish Institute (2011), Stockholm and UNEP-Tongji Institute on Environment for Sustainable Development (2019), Shanghai. He is also a Chevening Scholar at London School of Economics and Political Science, London.



Prof. M.S. Swaminathan

Advisor Emeritus

Padma Vibhushan Professor M S Swaminathan has been acclaimed by TIME magazine as one of the twenty most influential Asians of the 20th century and one of the only three from India, the other two being Mahatma Gandhi and Rabindranath Tagore. He has been described by the United Nations Environment Programme as "the Father of Economic Ecology" because of his leadership of the green revolution movement in agriculture and by Javier Perez de Cuellar, Secretary General of the United Nations, as "a living legend who will go into the annals of history as a world scientist of rare distinction."  

Professor M S Swaminathan was awarded the Ramon Magsaysay Award for Community Leadership in 1971, the Albert Einstein World Science Award in 1986, the first World Food Prize in 1987, and Volvo, Tyler and UNEP Sasakawa Prize for Environment, the Indira Gandhi Prize for Peace, Disarmament and Development in 2000 and the Franklin D Roosevelt Four Freedoms Medal, the Mahatma Gandhi Prize of UNESCO in 2000 and the Lal Bahadur Sastri National Award (2007). He is the recipient of Padma Shri (1967), Padma Bhushan (1972) and Padma Vibushan (1989). 

He was a Member of the Parliament (Rajya Sabha), during 2007-13. During 2010-13, he chaired a high-level panel of experts for the World Committee on Food Security (CFS). He also Chairs the Task Force set up by the Ministry of External Affairs to oversee the projects undertaken in Afghanistan and Myanmar in the field of agriculture. In 2013, Professor M S Swaminathan received the Indira Gandhi Award for National Integration and Greatest Global Living Legend Award of NDTV. He was also elected at the 20th International Congress of Nutrition held at Granada, Spain, “as Living Legend of International Union of Nutrition Sciences”.

He received the Life Time Achievement Award at the 9th Nutra Summit in Bengaluru. He received the “Yerarinjar” (agricultural legend) award for his work in sustainable agriculture in India. He received Bharath Shanthi Dootha Award, 2017 (World Peace Festival Society, Warangal).  He is also the recipient of the World Agriculture Prize (2018).