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Story: COVID-19 India

CFAR Supports Families Living in Urban Poverty During COVID-19

Program Overview

The second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in India disproportionately impacted families living in urban poverty, making it harder for them to access food, healthcare facilities, and the vaccine. As a result, many families were pushed further below the poverty line. To support marginalized communities, the Centre for Advocacy and Research (CFAR) is working with partners to organize vaccination drives and provide ration kits.

Thanks to a wide network of volunteers and collaborators from the state governments of Delhi and West Bengal, CFAR is helping adults and children get the resources they need to stay as healthy and stable as possible in dire circumstances.

I lost my work during the lockdown and it became difficult to feed my family. I was provided ration kits regularly for three months which was a huge support for me.

Babli, Gautampuri, Domestic Worker

How It Helps

The CFAR team and network have been working with vaccination centers and local administrative bodies to reach people in Delhi and Kolkata who are living in poverty. Many of them do not have identification proof, which is required for the vaccine unless a facilitator accompanies them. CFAR is helping to make this possible.  

Additionally, CFAR has distributed ration kits to families who have lost their livelihoods and do not have enough to eat each day. Each kit contains enough to feed adults and children for a month.  

These efforts build on two decades of CFAR’s work in supporting families living on low incomes. The organization creates awareness of the government’s social protection resources and helps people access them. They also serve communities like informal workers, transgender persons, sex industry workers, people living with HIV, and people living with disabilities.  

The resources play a key role in helping families reduce economic and social vulnerabilities to break the cycle of poverty. During COVID-19, this support has become even more essential.  

Meet Pooja, One Worker Supported by CFAR 

Pooja Kaur is a 24-year-old construction worker who received support from CFAR. She lives in New Delhi with her two children who are seven and one. Pooja lost her husband Baldev Singh to the second wave of COVID-19 and has struggled to make ends meet. The CFAR team helped her procure and complete all documentation so that she can apply for assistance from the Building and Construction Workers Welfare Board. 

Moving forward, CFAR will continue support families like Pooja’s to create opportunity for people living in urban poverty to build financial stability and thrive.