Masking it Up with WEP
The Women Entrepreneurship Platform (WEP), NITI Aayog's flagship initiative to promote women entrepreneurship in the country, has launched a campaign to enable and promote the livelihoods of women home-based workers making reusable cloth masks.
This is envisioned to oxygenate women-led small businesses in India that have been adversely impacted due to COVID-19.
Home-based workers, especially women, are struggling to make ends meet in the uncertain climate of the pandemic and are looking for alternate sources of income. Women working with grassroots organisations and small women-led businesses who have the required skill set and capability to stitch have adapted to the need of the hour by making reusable cloth masks.
The ‘Masking it Up with WEP’ initiative empowers women home-based workers from grassroots organisations, not-for-profit organisations and women-led small businesses during the pandemic by facilitating connections with potential buyers.
Through this initiative, WEP connects three important stakeholders:
WOMEN HOME-BASED WORKERSMultiple grassroots organisations, not-for-profit organisations and women-led small businesses across India, with networks of women home-based workers who possess the required skills and capabilities, have responded to the campaign and have signed up to be a part of this initiative.
BUYERS AND FUNDERSAs the economy reopens and the country adjusts to the new normal, WEP is connecting these home-based workers to potential buyers for sale of cloth masks and funding support for their enterprises and livelihoods.
RAW MATERIAL SUPPLIERSWith the national lockdown’s restrictions on mobility, home-based workers were unable to procure raw materials for cloth masks. WEP is leveraging its aggregator status to bridge this gap and connect home-based workers with mask making capabilities to raw material suppliers.
PROGRESS SO FAR
20+Women led grassroot organizations, not-for-profit organisations and small businesses
~ 1,00,000Masks Produced
100+Home-based workers benefitted
10+Raw material suppliers offered support
Through these partnerships, WEP is currently engaged with women home-based workers in Delhi, Rajasthan, Maharashtra, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Arunachal Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, West Bengal, Haryana, Tamil Nadu and Gujarat. The initiative is focused on connecting suppliers of masks and buyers in close geographical proximity, enabling support to local women-led initiatives.
EQUIP FOR THE NEW NORMAL
All these organisations have been briefed on the guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare regarding reusable cloth masks and have been instructed to adhere to the same while producing masks. These masks will equip your organizations and communities to safely operate during the new normal.
CALL FOR ACTION
WEP is an aggregator platform that works to connect women entrepreneurs with relevant ecosystem players and organizations which can support their requirements. Through the Masking it Up with WEP initiative, the platform looks to enable access to markets and funding support for women home-based workers and support them through these difficult times.
In these times of economic distress, WEP hopes to reach out to allies who may be interested in supporting the livelihoods of India’s home-based workforce as she works to build the post-COVID India.
WHO CAN HELP?
- Does your organization have a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) program that wants to fund the efforts of home-based workers and contribute to this nation building endeavour ?
- Is your organization looking to place an order for masks with the home-based workers enrolled with Masking it Up with WEP?
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU SIGN-UP?
WEP team will reach out to understand your interests and requirements to support women home-based workers.
WEP team will connect interested parties to geographically proximate home-based workers.
Interested parties and home-based workers will discuss details of the order.
Interested parties may then place an order with the home-based workers.
As the nation goes
Vocal for Local,
we urge you to consider supporting these tireless women warriors who are constantly innovating and adapting boldly and relentlessly to the new normal. Your support will go a long way in rejuvenating the Indian economy by empowering and promoting women entrepreneurs.