COVID-19 – a crisis of care and what we can learn from the SEWA experience in India
As women across the globe continue to be overburdened with child-care responsibilities owing to the closure of institutional child-care facilities due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this paper attempts to posit a viable disaster-resilient model through the idea of community-based care infrastructure. Based on research conducted among parents from low-income groups, whose children attended child-care centres run by Sangini Co-operative of Self-employed women's association (SEWA) in Gujarat in western India, this paper wants to highlight the spontaneity with which the Cooperative responded to the pandemic, underlining the efficacy of community-based interventions in times of crisis. This paper argues that solidarity between care workers and the larger community is only likely to increase during times of crisis, which makes community-based solutions an integral part of addressing future care emergencies.
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