In the times of COVID-19
We thank you for your supporting the previous fundraiser and for your donations. While the COVID-19 pandemic and the resultant lockdown has meant a lot of distress for most people, the elderly waste pickers are particularly vulnerable. Please click on the picture below or on the donate now button for donating towards social security for the elderly waste pickers.
Waste pickers comprise an integral part of Urban Waste Management, though their status remains confined to the informal and unorganised sector. They continue to be socio-economically marginalized and vulnerable. They have little or no savings and nothing to show in the name of social security.
Elderly waste pickers are even more precariously placed. Many of them have provided an essential service to the city for decades, having collected waste their entire lives. However, when they are unable to work and meet even their most basic needs, let alone medical or any additional requirements that may come up, they have no security to fall back on. Added to this many of them are destitute i.e. they either have no relatives to take care of them or have been abandoned by their family. In light of the pandemic and the ensuing lockdown, the vulnerability of elderly urban poor has been compounded.
The government policy for social security pension for the destitute elderly, has suffered from unsatisfactory implementation, depending on potential beneficiaries producing extensive paperwork, which they seldom have. With massive budget cuts, and fewer personnel to execute it, it is likely that the government will disburse even less.
While many of us have the liberty of working from home, or suspending work, our city’s waste pickers continue to work tirelessly to keep our city clean and safe. The lockdown has halted the entire informal recycling economy, as scrap shops have been closed down, and this cuts off a major part of their income, leaving most of their family members jobless. 3,540 SWaCH waste pickers in Pune, and 580 KKPKP waste pickers in PCMC, provide the essential service of solid waste collection, and are required to continue doing so during this outbreak to prevent worse health and hygiene disasters. These waste pickers collect, transport and sort waste on a daily basis, exposing themselves to waste material from over 10,00,000 households and more than 40,00,000 individuals. This also puts them at a very high risk of infection and transmission of COVID-19.
While most of our city’s waste pickers are working hard to keep us safe, others have been left without income and are in dire need of support. The elderly among the waste pickers have been urged to stay home and stop working, making them a vulnerable group critically in need of support. The rest of the citys’ 3000 informal and itinerant waste pickers, who rely solely on the sale of recyclables, have been left without any income during this trying period.
After years of contributing to our city’s health, local economies and environmental sustainability, the waste pickers are in an even more vulnerable position, at high risk of infection and in need of support. We are working to provide Personal Protective Equipment and Ration Kits to keep them safe and support their families through these uncertain times. We welcome your contributions towards their health and safety.
We are also accepting foreign donations and our FC bank details are-
Account Name : KASHTAKARI PANCHAYAT
Account Number : 00000032036166729
Account Description : FCRA -SAVINGS BANK ACCOUNT INR
Branch : ERANDWANE ,PUNE
IFS Code : SBIN0004618
Swift Code: SBININBB218
We would like to acknowledge all our donors and thank them for their support, so kindly do send an email confirming your donation at firstname.lastname@example.org