Covid Warriors of 2020

Stitching a Safe and Secure Life

“I lost hope due to the lockdown, and thought that I wouldn’t be able to revive my business ever. I never knew my socio-economic condition would upgrade as Covid affected the lives of people like us the most. With Priyasakhi Mahila Sangh and FWWB’s support, I am able to see the other side of the life through switching of to the business of demand. She replied with a mere smile and satisfaction”.

35 years old, Sunita Pal belong to Indore district of Madhya Pradesh. She is a member of Self-Help Group under Priyasakhi Mahila Sangh. There are total of 7 members in her family. Her husband is an auto-rickshaw driver, therefore the income is not sufficient to sustain such big family. Hence she decided to utilize her skills of stitching for an improved life.

Initially, she started her small home based business by stitching simple and designer blouses on order basis and used to sell it in her neighbourhood at minimal rates. Last year she has undergone several skill based trainings conducted by FWWB, India under the project “School of Entrepreneurship Skill Development for Women” with the support of Priyasakhi Mahila Sangh. She learnt various notions of businesses by attending trainings on financial education, business skills building, and leadership skills. She applied such skills in her business as well which helped her progressively for raising her savings and incomes.

However, her happiness did not survive for long, since March 2020, the pandemic situation of Covid-19 affected all spheres of life. And the business of Sunita Pal and her husband also suffered with loss of income and as a result of it, survival of her household became difficult.

As a true entrepreneur, her belief was to never give up so she thought of an alternative business with her current skills and seeing the current market demand. She reached out to Priyasakhi to express her willingness for learning PPE Kit and mask making. Hence, Priyasakhi Mahila Sangh approached FWWB for the same and FWWB organised trainings with support from an enterprise named Gurukripa Silai Center based at Indore, MP popularly known as Shivani Shilai Center. Sunita was one of the members who learnt to make PPE Kit and mask and initiated selling these products to her neighbourhood soon. With her good stitching skills and leadership skills, recently she got orders for producing 500 sets of PPE Kits and 200 sets of face masks from the same unit where she learnt the skills.

She is a motivation to other women too as she inspired women of her neighbourhood to take such initiative to fight the consequences of the pandemic. In coming years, she is also planning to set up her own mask and PPE Kit production unit keeping the scenario and demand in mind.