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Trained women in three districts begins making PPEs to overcome shortage

July 9, 2020

HYDERABAD:Village women in three districts of lower Sindh including Badin, Tando Muhammad Khan and Hyderabad, have started making personal protective equipment (PPEs), including face masks, gowns and hand gloves, at their homes for selling in the market due to increased demand amid Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

It has been observed that PPEs either are in shortage or unavailable in local markets in rural Sindh. Thus, the skilled women in 15 villages have been imparted a training for stitching these products at homes to meet the demand in local market.

Strengthening Participatory Organization (SPO), a national level village support body, helped these skilled women with provision of sewing machines, clothes and necessary material, so that they could prepare these products, which have dire need in local markets.

These women will have linkages with urban markets in three districts to supply their products and earn little income through this specific work for their sustainability at this difficult time.

After conducting need assessment, SPO has identified vulnerable families in these districts, which need to be rehabilitated instantly as most of males and females faced difficulties after losing their traditional source of income.

They originally belong to sharecroppers and daily wage earners in agriculture fields. After imposition of COVID-19 related lockdown, majority of the workers have been compelled to stay idle at home and experienced problems.

It was observed that women workers were in highly vulnerable conditions due to loss of livelihood of their males. The economic burden has further curtailed the women’s support to health services, and their daily needs. Therefore, a subsistence allowance was proposed to disburse amongst the most vulnerable women, including women- led households.

Pirbhu Satyani, regional head of SPO Hyderabad said the organization has taken initiative with the support of Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to help poor families in these three districts of the province, aiming to rehabilitate them to face the Covid-19 economic conditions.

He said they have started distribution of food packs and cash support among the most vulnerable families in Villages Qasim Solangi, Haji Shafi Solangi and Behar colony (Bagri Community) in Hyderabad district, so they may live safe.

The provincial government had imposed lockdown in mid of March this year to stop spread of Novel Coronavirus pandemic, closing all industries, markets, transport and every economic activity, compelling poor workforce to stay idle at home for long time.

A press release issued on Thursday by SPO pointed out that 500 families in 22 villages in three districts will be benefitted through provision of ration packs, cash support to 150 women, and imparting training among 15 women with provision of sewing machines, cloth and material so they may earn for their sustainability.

These women themselves can work for packing and grading of their products with brand tags as per market demand. These skilled women may continue designing such clothes and products, which have a demand in local as well as in urban market. Besides, village families a small number of sanitary workers, the most marginalized community will also be accommodated to have this benefit, food ration packs and safety kits to live safe at the face of pandemic.

Keeping in mind the emergency response mechanism of PDMAs, insufficient availability of resources with district and provincial departments and prevalent mayhem, SPO has proposed its Covid-19 response initiatives to support at two levels.

It has been witnessed that the government departments are in dire need of resources to meet the demand of paramedics and other janitorial staff, who are playing role at the forefront to fight the pandemic. Besides this, due to prolonged lockdown vulnerable communities had lost their livelihood, which need support.

Entire process followed social distancing and hygienic protocols. These beneficiaries are being provided with hygiene, first aid kits and disinfectants, including small machines. This innovative approach can help them sustain their livelihood for a longer period. The products of women will be promoted on social media and local markets, said a statement.

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