Osama Manzar, Founder and Director of DEF spoke with Village Level Entrepreneurs (VLE); Pratima Kumari, Aarati Sharma, Manorama Uttam and Resham Kumari. They are the VLEs in West Champaran district of Bihar and are working towards the betterment of the community by distributing masks, sanitizers and providing digital solutions to the people.
“There is a shortage of masks and sanitizers in West Champaran and people do not have money to afford one. Since, wearing masks is mandatory, I taught myself how to stitch masks with the help of YouTube videos and distributed 100 masks amongst people. Similarly, I also distributed homemade sanitizers and also taught them how to make it.
Many families who do not have TVs in their homes or are not subscribed to news channels are less informed about the current situation across the country. In order to help and keep them aware, I record news on my mobile phone and ply them on the temple’s loudspeaker”.
“The economic condition of the village is bad. I have encouraged and helped the women of the village to find an alternative source of income amid this lockdown. The women are making masks and selling it for Rs 10/mask, which gives them a profit of Rs 5 per mask. Until now 1000 such masks have been sold”.
“I was asked by the district manager of the village to get Arogya Setu downloaded on everyone’s phone and send them the list. Soap distribution to poor who could not afford them has been taken care of by the team. We have also distributed Rs 100 from our own pocket to as many villagers as possible to help them buy vegetables.”
“In Chuhari village the poor are majorly affected. Several families are not able to afford the basics. I and my team have distributed rations and dry groceries, milks packets for the children in the time of crisis. The beneficiaries of various government schemes are totally dependent on the money they receive from the government. Unfortunately, the accounts have not been credited with the amount promised by the government and the people do not have money to spend even for the basic necessities”.