Women in Kamathipura during a vaccination campaign organized by Vivarea, Agripada
MUMBAI: Earlier this year, a girl from Kamathipura who âhadn’t seen the sun for six yearsâ helped two women in a skyscraper in southern Mumbai see the light.
In the story of this young migrant who sells her body for “20 to 30 Rs for five minutes”, women who live in an avowed bubble of teas and brunches have found not only a renewed respect for the “value of the money “. But also the main fear that had prevented sex workers in the red light district from getting vaccinated against Covid-19: the loss of two days of income for post-vaccination recovery.
Soon, “Vivarea Gives,” a charity building network of over 400 residents from Vivarea to Jacob Circle decided that the best way to make science trump trade in this hungry Mumbai belly would be through stomach. The group, whose unofficial “CEO” is heart surgeon Dr Meera Razdan, provided free kits of wheat flour, daal, rice, pao and chai to nearly 120 women for a month.
This gesture of almost Rs 2 lakh made it easier for sex workers to see the economic, if not scientific, sense of queuing for their first free dose of Covishield.
Razdan’s friend in Vivarea, the general manager of Wockhardt hospitals, sent her team led by Khyati Desai and Shiva Khattar to Kamathipura for the campaign in July. At a similar camp later this month, the girls will also receive their second jab for free.
Even as the threat of a third wave of Covid-19 looms, networks of informal housing companies such as “Vivarea Gives” and Powai’s “Ministry of Happiness Atlantis” continue to monitor the welfare of those in need. found inside and outside the building.
For proof, search for âMile Sur Mera Tumhara Revisitedâ online. You will come across a Unity in Diversity video created not by the Ministry of Culture, but by the Ministry of Happiness (MOH) Atlantis, a microcosm of the inhabitants of Atlantis from over 200 apartments in the Hiranandani Gardens of Powai who decided to mark India’s 75 years of independence with a personal recreation of the 33-year-old iconic song of national integration. âThe idea for the video arose out of the thirst for connection we all feel in these times of social distancing,â says Ajay Kulkarni of MOH Atlantis.
Created to spread ‘joy and sun’ during the lockdown, the team went beyond organizing hospital beds and home cooked meals for patients affected by Covid. The group hosted a live video conferencing session for residents on the importance of setting life goals two months ago. Recently, members of this ministry sang âDon’t worry, be happyâ by Jamaican legend Bob Marley, and personally delivered healthy roses and fruit juices to women in all apartments on the occasion of the celebration. Women’s day.
Meanwhile, Vivarea Gives, which has raised funds for multiple causes, from the Kashmir floods to the four-year Latur famine, also enabled free Covid vaccination for family members of police station staff. ‘Agripada and Nagpada.
âIf other companies launch similar initiatives, it can become a movement,â says Razdan of Vivarea Gives, whose donated blankets and sheets now keep old people abandoned in a retirement home in Chembur warm.