Food For The Vulnerable People: How YUVA’s Campaign Is Helping Feed Migrant Workers In Mumbai


Migrant staff and day-to-day salary earners throughout India are more and more going hungry all over the coronavirus pandemic and struggling underneath the rustic’s strictest lockdown. Living in huge, overcrowded, ceaselessly unhygienic spaces, with restricted get admission to to elementary wishes, those individuals are a ways from with the ability to deal with social distance, and are a few of the maximum liable to the fatal virus.

To lend a hand put this into viewpoint, what took place out of doors Mumbai’s Bandra West railway station on Tuesday afternoon was once an alarming indication that the demanding situations the migrant staff had been going through during the last few weeks, have simplest were given extra excessive.

It’s a state of affairs that NGOs and help volunteers are extraordinarily curious about.

“A lot of them have also been told that they would not get paid for the days they wouldn’t be coming to work,” says Juveca Panda, who started a fundraising marketing campaign ‘Together We Can: Spread Love Not Corona’ in affiliation with a Mumbai-based NGO YUVA to strengthen prone households throughout four towns within the Mumbai Metropolitan Region—Vasai Virar, Mumbai, Navi Mumbai and Panvel– within the wake of the coronavirus outbreak.

Panda says even sooner than the outbreak, many migrant staff had been left utterly jobless, owing to the panic and paranoia across the pandemic.

“We surveyed a lot of vulnerable communities in Bandra East, Malad and Kharghar, and found out that many of them were already asked to not come to work because the employers started panicking in terms of how the novel coronavirus would transmit. And, these migrant workers started panicking and a lot of them already didn’t have access to rations anymore. One of the bigger issues was the ration card linkage to Aadhar. Most of the linkage to the Aadhar card is quite poor. So many of them don’t even get the ration that they are supposed. Therefore, a lot of them were already going without food for a couple of days,” Panda tells us.

Panda elaborates on how her group is prioritising their capacities to reply to the disaster, including that their preliminary surveys immensely helped them determine the worst-affected spaces.

“Since we had already identified all of these areas and the communities, we immediately started getting dry ration kits together and distributing to these areas. Since we started about three weeks ago, we have done around 6,200 dry ration kits till date. So each of it will last the family of five, and initially we started with ration kits which were for two weeks. Now we have moved to monthly rations because the lockdown has been extended.

“In addition to that, what we additionally began doing per week into reduction paintings is we realise that the very important provider suppliers like police body of workers and the federal government well being suppliers had been very overburdened, and a large number of them had been running for days on finish, no longer going house and having correct foods. So, we partnered with Blue Sea Catering and so they in fact spread out its complete venue in Worli and arrange a kitchen to create meal containers. We began doing about 9,000 day-to-day foods between the police pressure and the federal government hospitals as smartly. Soon after, we additionally began getting reduction requests for migrant laborers in spaces the place there was once no get admission to to meals or water,” she says.

Currently, a skeleton crew of her campaign is involved in the care and feeding of the stranded migrant labourers in Kharghar, Navi Mumbai and Bhiwandi, Thane.

“Bhiwandi’s Powerloom factories have a large number of migrant labourers from Uttar Pradesh, Karnataka, Jharkhand, Bihar and Andhra Pradesh. Since none of them had any realize and borders had been closed, they had been not able to return to their properties. Most of those guys earn about 300-600 rupees in an afternoon. And now with out those elementary wages as smartly, they’re simply caught. A number of them live in a single room in combination and not able to get admission to anything else. There are nearly 5 to 6 lakh migrant staff stranded there presently,” Panda says, while explaining how the current situation is impacting the daily wage workers.

They have now set up another kitchen at Navi Mumbai’s D Y Patil Sports Stadium to send out 12,000 freshly cooked meals per day to the stranded labourers.

“We realised that this was once one thing that we had to straight away cater to. We have additionally began catering foods to some other crew of stranded migrant laborers on one of the most building websites in Kharghar. Now we’re doing about 12,000 foods in step with day from DY Patil to all of the stranded migrant laborers.

“Today, we are at around 85,000 meals for the stranded laborers that we have done till date. We really scaled up relief work because we realised that there were a lot of people who were not getting the relief that they required immediately. It’s quite heartbreaking. We have raised about Rs 1.5 crore as of today and we are looking to continue fund-raising so that we can sustain these relief efforts,” she concludes.

Support the day-to-day salary earners who’ve been hit the toughest through the COVID-19 disaster. Click here to contribute to the cause. #IndiaProvides

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