31-year-old Govind had lost all hope of finding a new job during the lockdown. This is the second time he had to leave work due to the lockdown in Delhi. In Govind’s line of work, he is paid only when he goes to work, and he had nothing to fall back on when the shop had to close. Govind worked as a salesman in a retail clothing shop before the lockdown on April 19 April 2021. As the only earning member in the family, he knew the hardship they had to face again. In 2020, when the country went into the first lockdown, he couldn’t work for more than six months. Without any earning, they sometimes had to live on cooked food and rations provided by Wold Vision India and government agencies. He feared for the worst when the government announced another lockdown this year.
“Last year during the lockdown, the shop was closed and I was not paid for around six months. We managed to get rations from handouts but sometimes we need to buy some items. It was really difficult to manage a family without earning,” said Govind.
Govind and his wife Urmila are parents to Dhiraj, 10, and Aarav, 6. Dhiraj studies in the 6th standard and has been attending online classes. He studies in a private school and they spend Rs.900 per month on school fees.
Aarav’s education has been delayed because of the pandemic. He is yet to be admitted to a school but attends Unlock Literacy classes run by World Vision India. Unlock Literacy is an evidence-based model, developed by World Vision and implemented to improving literacy levels for ‘early readers’ – children in the first few years of primary school.
Prem, a World Vision India’s staff came to know about Govind’s plight and registered his name at Goodworker, a platform that connects blue-colour workers and their employers. World Vision India in Delhi and Goodworker have signed an MOU to work together and Govind is one of the first to benefit from this collaboration. Govind now works as a delivery man for Zomato, a corporation that reviews restaurants, provides menu and deliver food. Govind has a personal bike, which he uses to deliver food.
“I get paid Rs.9000/month in my previous job. I could get paid better now it all depends on how much work I do and how much work I get,” said Govind.
Govind is one week into the job and is still learning about it. He picks up food from restaurants and delivers it at the customer’s door. It is still a risky job but one he is happy to keep it.
“I was desperate for any job and this came along. I’m very happy because I can still work during the lockdown and support my family. At the shop, I had to work long hours and the timings were very strict. Now I can work at my own pace and I feel more independent,” said Govind.
In our communities across India, people are struggling with job loss and food insecurity. The majority of our community members in urban slums work in unorganised sectors such as construction jobs, vegetable sellers, petty shops, labours, etc., and live hand to mouth. The second lockdown has crippled livelihood and people are desperate for jobs so that they can take care of their families.
In Delhi, World Vision India in collaboration with Goodworker has given job placement to seven individuals during the lockdown.