HWTC trains Aurangabad manual scavenger to find job amid Covid-19 pandemic
Meena Haribhau Kharat had been cleaning community toilets for seven years but that job also went away after the nationwide lockdown started
Meena Haribhau Kharat had been cleaning community toilets for seven years but that job also went away after the nationwide lockdown started, in March 2020, following the outbreak of Covid-19 in India.
“I lost my job at the beginning of the pandemic. I had three children and no source of income! For 7 years, I had been cleaning community toilets—not something to look forward to or talk about, but as soon as Covid-19 struck, even that went away,” says Meena.
The Harpic World Toilet College, Aurangabad launched its online classes for the sanitation workers amid the lock down and this came to the rescue of Meena, who was desperately looking an alternative job.
“It was so convenient. I took the training through my mobile phone,” says Meena.
She got a job as a housekeeper at Dhoot Hospital, Aurangabad with a fairly high salary, enough for her to have settled her earlier debts. She could also able to save some amount from her salary for her family’s financial needs.
The Harpic World Toilet College trains sanitation workers to lead dignified lives through alternative opportunities of livelihood. The college, India’s first, was started in August 2018 in Aurangabad city of Maharashtra by Reckitt, the British health and hygiene products giant, in association with Jagaran Pehel and World Toilet Organisation, Singapore.
A total of 3,200 sanitation workers were trained in the first year of the functioning of the college and all of them secured sustainable employment.
‘101 Stories of Inspiration’, a coffee table book, contains many stories of transformation of sanitation workers like Meena. The book was unveiled at the Mission Paani World Toilet Day event on November 19, 2021.
Mission Paani, an initiative of News 18-Harpic India, advocates access to clean water, sanitation and hygiene for all.
Join the Mission Paani movement.