IE India: SEWA

Our group met up with the women of SEWA. The women started the meeting in prayer. It was a prayer based on Gandhian Philosophy – all religions are inclusive here. Founded and led by women, SEWA is a trade union representing self-employed women in India who are earning a living in the unorganized sector, unable to obtain the stability and welfare benefits typical of the organized sector. To put SEWA’s scope in context - India’s unorganized female labor force comprise of more than 90% of the total female labor force in India. Despite having experienced multiple challenges, SEWA emerges as one of the most notable organizations advocating for the betterment of Indian women. The female leaders at the meeting spoke assertively about the trade union’s impact on the lives of its members. Its ambition and success has led to SEWA’s desire to replicate models in other countries as the organization moves toward greater international recognition and partnerships. Watch out for this organization’s rise to global prominence.

About the author

Cheri Tan