Over the past few weeks, all of our lives have taken a drastic turn. Here at MarketPlace, it is anything but "business as usual." However, we are doing what we do best: Continuing to empower the artisans and assist in helping them to maneuver situations. The lives and income of the artisans depend on a future that includes employment.
India is now in a government-mandated full country shut down until April 14th. Imagine 1.2 billion people staying at home! Particularly in the city slums, homes are very small and under normal circumstances, everyone would only be there together for dinner and sleep.
To help in the short term (however long that proves to be) MarketPlace is providing each artisan 60% of the cost that is required to purchase food for their families. The government is also subsidizing food and providing some essentials free of cost. This crisis, however, has not eliminated corruption in ration shops, so staff members are educating the women on their rights and how to register complaints. The artisans are using their knowledge and confidence to stick up for themselves and their neighbors!
In these difficult times, we are so grateful for our wonderful customers. And we continue to be impressed by the artisans' determination and optimism. Together we will overcome the challenges of COVID-19 and make the world a better place.