Riding the Waves of Crisis: How the SIFFS-CAC Collaboration is Helping the Fisher Community Protect Itself from the Effects of the COVID-19 Pandemic

The fishing communities of Southern India are quite adept at riding the harsh sea swells to fish for their livelihoods. Yet, oftentimes, they face waves that trip them off their balance. The current pandemic put them in a plight of basic survival. First, the COVID-19 virus and the subsequent lockdowns impacted their health and livelihoods. Then, two cyclones hit the […]

Dakshas Foundation: Enabling Health-Tech for Non-Profits; from Telemedicine to Virtual Clinical Networks

The recent COVID-19 waves have shown how vulnerable communities are due to a lack of health awareness, services, and infrastructure. So many of us have experienced catastrophic health events and expenditures that 60 million Indians go through even during a non-pandemic year. These vulnerabilities are severe in rural and remote communities due to lack of access to equitable healthcare. How […]

We Save For Our Future, But The Tribal Don’t Even Have Any Daily Wages

Ramchandra Kolekar, Shrmajivi Janata Sahayyak Mandal  Shrmajivi Janata Sahayyak Mandal (SJSM) works with over 2.5 lakh people from the rural communities of Satara and Raigad districts  of Maharashtra. Their work focuses on sustainable livelihood, agriculture, soil and water conservation, natural resource management and women empowerment. SJSM is a COVIDActionCollab partner and more about their work can be found here : https://sjsmsatara.org/ […]

Step-Down Hospital at C502: Assisting the Care of Marginalised Communities

The COVID-19 pandemic has hit communities hard. The virus has often engulfed entire families which made it difficult for people to monitor and provide care at home.  For marginalised communities, the struggle became ten-fold due to the high cost of treatment, lack of facilities to isolate, and the widespread misinformation about the virus.  To address these needs of the community, […]

#VACCINATION4EVERYONE: Enabling Ease of Vaccine Access for Trans People

Vaccination is the world’s only shield against the health crisis caused by the COVID-19 virus. However, many marginalized communities are left out, and the transgender community is one of the most affected. There are many reasons for this, many of which have not been proactively addressed. A strained relationship with the healthcare system already pushes them away from availing any […]

Children’s Right to Development: The Case of Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, and Karnataka

Founded in 2019, Child Rights Foundation (CRF) is a child-centric national non-profit organization, committed to fulfilment of Child Rights as enshrined in the Indian constitution and UNCRC (United Nation Convention on the Rights of the Child). Our NGO – Child Rights Foundation India – is championing the cause of  Child Survival (Health), Child Development (Education & sports)  Child Protection ( […]

Evaluating a Mobile-Based Short Virtual Course on Family Planning for Frontline Health Workers in India

One of the ways to address the critical gap of trained human resources in health is to train frontline workers (FLW) on health prevention and health promotion. The FLW play an important role in community mobilization, outreach activities, and service delivery at the last mile. In rural India, the number of internet and smartphone users is rapidly increasing, presenting an […]

St Joseph’s Isolation Care Facility: A refuge for the vulnerable

Mild and asymptomatic COVID-19 patients are advised to self isolate in their homes, while they recover. However, not everyone has the means to self-isolate in their homes. In small houses with just one room or bathroom, isolation is out of the question. A study titled, “Slums and Urban Welfare in Karnataka’s Development” notes that 20% of the city’s population, or […]

The Power of Good Communication

Soumita Basu, COVIDActionCollab FXBIS India Suraksha (FXBIS) is a CAC partner and has been working towards changing mindsets to fight the pandemic in Puducherry. They are focusing on ensuring people come forward for vaccination and follow simple covid safety rules. Their strategy is simple: use innovative methods to reach people with messages again and again, to have a long term […]

We need stronger local institutions to fight crisis like Covid-19

Pardha Saradhi, SEARCH  SEARCH (Socio Economic Alternatives Research & Resource Community for Humanity) works towards empowering people living in rural and marginal communities, mainly, small farmers, fisherfolk, vulnerable children, women, and youth and has reached around 35000 household, impacting over 2 lakh people  (https://searchngo.org/). Their work spans across Guntur, Krishna, and Prakasam, Andhra Pradesh. SEARCH is a COVIDActionCollab partner. Medical […]

The Bhils and the Bhilala are strong communities, we need to support them to make them resilient

Jimmy Nirmal, Sara Seva Sansthan Samiti Sara Seva Sansthan Samiti is a community based organization in Jhabua, Madhya Pradesh, close to the borders of Gujarat and Rajasthan. The area has 3 tribes constituting more than 84 percent of the population.  We work specially with the Bhil and Bhilala tribes, within them our focus has been working with 750 PLHIV tribals, […]

At the moment, people are unwell, unemployed and hungry

Manorama Singh, Berojgar Mahila Sewa Samiti (BMSS) BMSS works with rural and urban poor in Bhilai. Their focus is working on sex trafficking issues, reproductive and child health, and sustainable livelihoods for the poor, particularly migrants. BMSS is a CAC partner. Some will die due to Covid, while others will die from hunger The state of hunger and panic is […]

Taaras Coalition: Enabling a dignified life for women in sex work through collective action

Women in sex work are constantly subjected to neglect and stigma – both socially and politically – and struggle to enjoy basic human rights as citizens of the country. In most places, mainstream financial security, a life of safety and access to services is difficult to imagine, let alone live, among the sex worker community. Facing poverty, violence and discrimination […]

SELCO’s solar-powered refrigerators help marginalized women grow their businesses

Amalorpavam, Mariya and Vasantha are women entrepreneurs from marginalized communities, who sell fish in the streets of Madurai, Tamil Nadu. While Mariya and Amalorpavam procure the fish at the local wholesale markets, Vasantha procures her fish from Thoothukudi, around 150km from Madurai, where her relatives go fishing.  Their major overhead expense was ice, which is sold at around Rs 50 […]

Godrej Consumer Products Ltd. – COVID-19 relief to vulnerable communities

COVID-19 and the nationwide lockdown – one of the many steps taken to contain the spread of the disease in India – has had detrimental effects throughout the country. But those most affected are from the already marginalized communities. As almost all economic activity came to a halt, they lost their livelihoods, resulting in physical and emotional stress and putting […]

Covai Trans Kitchen: Cooking Up Success, Breaking Stereotypes

The Covai Trans Kitchen is probably a first of its kind. This restaurant in Coimbatore is entirely managed and operated by a group of transgenders. Just around the corner of the busy bus stop, it serves delicious biriyani and set-menu meals. Their most popular item being the ‘unlimited biriyani’.  Set up with the help of #COVIDActionCollab (CAC) partners, Covai Mavatta […]

The SLPMS Tailoring Unit: Creating Livelihoods for the marginalized in the midst of COVID-19

Sri Lakshmi Pengal Munnetra Sangam (SLPMS) is a Community Based Organization (CBO) that began working with individuals from various vulnerable communities-such as sex workers, people living with HIV (PLHIV), Transgenders (TGs), Gay Men (MSM), etc. these communities did not have a forum for themselves, nor did they have access to safety and security and faced violent situations daily. SLPMS created […]

Soukhya Sanjeevini Samsthe: Supporting and protecting women in sex work during COVID-19

Priya (name changed) was among the many who lost their jobs and found themselves facing an uncertain future during the COVID-19 induced lockdown in India. As a sex worker and a daily wage labourer at local APMC, the 34-year-old widow and mother of two, from Peresandra village in Chikkaballapur, was already under pressure to make ends meet. The lockdown exacerbated […]

Protecting and empowering civic workers during COVID-19: In conversation with CDD Society

CDD Society is a non-governmental organization in the water and sanitation sector, involved in designing and implementing integrated and decentralized nature-based solutions for the growing water and sanitation management issues across India and South Asia. The #COVIDActionCollab spoke with Rohini Pradeep (Project Manager, CDD Society), to understand their experience as part of the COVID-19 response so far.  What have been your primary […]

Tele-care during COVID-19: Insights from Two Pan-India Solutions

Background In order to explore how tele-care innovations are working to address service gaps and help communities adapt to COVID-19 realities, the COVID Action Collaborative is publishing a series of articles that highlight various tele-care initiatives launched by CAC partners. This piece is the second article in this series. It highlights two organisations that are working to serve communities across […]

Tele-services during COVID-19: A Comprehensive and Integrated Pandemic Response

Background As COVID-19 spreads throughout India and globally, the availability of essential and primary care services is critical now more than ever. Diversion of resources to the COVID-19 response coupled with lockdowns and mobility restrictions have compromised the availability of these services. Many communities are unaware of how to navigate the health systems in light of the pandemic, and require […]

A Great Relief to Alamelu’s family

The lockdowns enforced by several countries in response to COVID-19 have closed thousands of businesses, causing innumerous job losses. This is the case for thirty five year old Alamelu, a daily wage labourer at a hotel in Karur, Tamilnadu. Alamelu’s husband, Mariappan also lost his job as a daily wage labourer at a nearby bakery. With the loss of both […]

Providing Tamil Nadu’s forgotten transgender communities with relief packages

Swasti, Royal Enfield, NMCT provide Tamil Nadu’s forgotten transgender communities with COVID relief packages    How do you lock down the second most populated country in the world and ensure that everyone is taken care of?  After announcing a nation-wide lockdown on the 24th of March, the government of India announced a series of financial aid packages to be sent […]

Health: Molecular solutions fighting COVID-19 one test at a time

Molecular Solutions Care Health is a diagnostics and research organisation in the health sector. They started with the purpose of making advanced molecular testing available to anyone in need. Molecular Solutions has been doing rapid testing of COVID-19 as part of the CovidActionCollab. CAC Volunteer Vartika spoke to Ms. Varsha Sridhar, Founder, Molecular Solutions to understand their COVID-19 response so […]

Lalita Tai Alzende – A beacon of hope

Lalita Tai is 45 years old and is a social worker at Muktangan Sanstha, an NGO based in the Beed district of Maharashtra. Also a former sex worker, Lalita is employed by Muktangan Sanstha to spread awareness, represent former sex workers (FSW) and provide necessary services to the FSW community in her locality. However, since the nation-wide lockdown has highlighted […]

Mrs Rathnamma makes life saving PPE for Chikkaballapur community

Mrs. Rathnamma is a 35 year old garment worker from Kandavara Village, in the Chikkaballapur district of Karnataka. She is the sole provider for the four members of her family since her husband’s labouring job provides a rather unstable income. The restrictions put in place to slow the spread of the virus meant that Mrs. Rathnamma lost her daily wages […]

Saving the Livelihoods of Tailors in Kalburgi District via Face Mask Production

India’s garment industry, which employs around 45 million people, has been suffering dramatically since the COVID-19 government imposed lockdown, which took effect on the 24th of March 2020. Strict social distancing rules meanthat millions of people have been unable to go to work, from large scale garment factories to small tailoring businesses based out of home. This makes tailors one of […]

Unity in the face of adversity – bringing essential services to a fishery community in Worli Koliwada

Fishery markets are one of the most densely populated areas in Maharashtra. With the initiation of the lockdown and need for social distancing, business in 61 state and 40 local fish markets came to a halt, completely disrupting the lives of the fisheries community in Mahim Fishing Village. Over 3500 fishermen and vendors had no means of earning necessities for […]

“A Community Ignored by All”: Support to Transgenders of Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Maharashtra

The coronavirus pandemic has had a global impact, affecting the world population. To curb further transmission, the government of India declared a nationwide lockdown and announced financial aid packages for all vulnerable groups. The Finance Minister gave these packages to daily wage workers, construction workers, garment workers, and migrant workers. The transgender community, which constitutes 4.88 lakh population (as per […]

“We all are enough for each other”- The Story of a Community Organisation in Maharashtra

At Navchetna Yuva Vikas Samsthe (NYVS), members firmly believe in the philosophy “We all are enough for each other”. Solidarity lies at the heart of this community organization, which is made up of 1,100 members from the MSM (Men who have sex with men) and Transgender communities in Yavatmal district, Maharashtra. The NYVS  have received mentorship support from Swasti for […]

Ensuring Essential Services to Most Vulnerable Communities in Jhopadpatti area, Nashik

Before the lockdown began, Alka Tai worked as a maid in five houses close to her home in the Jhopadpatti area of Nashik, Maharashtra. Despite carrying the responsibility of financially supporting her family, Alka Tai also joined a local community-based organization, Disha Mahila Bahu-Uddeshya Sansthan (DMBS), a year ago to increase her health and financial literacy and share those messages […]


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