India is tremendously hit by the second COVID-19 wave, which is peaking like in no other country in the world. It impacts Women on Wings’ partners more than during the first wave, because this time the virus is reaching every doorstep. Also in rural India. We at Women on Wings have been reaching out to all our partners, to see how they are doing and how we could support. Offering a listening ear and our heartfelt best wishes are mostly all they need from us right now.
Taking the extra mile for beneficiaries
The second COVID-19 wave that is raging through India is heartbreaking to watch. Women on Wings’ partners have seen illness and losses themselves, but still they continue to safeguard the livelihoods of artisans and farmers. Some of Women on Wings’ partners voluntary closed their businesses temporarily, simply to make sure that their artisans stay home safe. Others do their utmost to continue their businesses, the best way possible. Women on Wings’ partner Shree Panchamdas Organic Khadi Gramodhyog Seva Samiti, which produces Khadi fabrics, saw many of its artisans and families being affected by the virus. The social enterprise decided to organize a mobile testing and vaccinating van which travels from village to village.
Offering alternative livelihood
The social enterprises that collaborate with Women on Wings are all eager to provide for their beneficiaries. Gramshree Foundation Trust (Gramshree) for instance, is offering alternative livelihood to migrant families from Udaipur, Rajasthan, who are forced to stay back in the villages since last year’s first COVID-19 wave and who were struggling to find an income. Gramshree initiated a pilot with 75 families on commercial vegetable cultivation. Tribal families successfully earned a decent income and Gramshree has now expanded the initiative to 200 rural families who are very excited to see their crops grow (see image).
Setting up isolation center
Women on Wings’ partner Manjari Foundation and HFDC Bank of India’ holistic rural development program (HRDP Parivartan) have come together in setting up a ten-bed isolation ward in Dholpur, Rajasthan. The isolation center is providing 24/7 COVID-19 support to village people, like beds, medicines, hand sanitizers, thermometers, oximeters, personal protection equipment kits that are unavailable in their area. Women on Wings is extremely proud to see the entrepreneurial spirits of its business partners. This gives good hopes for the future, when the COVID-19 pandemic is no longer impacting our daily lives.