Who is a Home-Based Worker? – A Home-based worker is a person who produces goods or services for the market from within or around their own homes. Although they remain largely invisible, home-based workers are engaged in many branches of industry and represent a significant share of urban employment in some countries, particularly for women and especially in Asia.
The International Home Based Workers Day was observed across Nagaland on 20th October in 4 Districts- Kohima , Phek, Tuensang and Dimapur under the theme “ We are Workers Too”. About 125 Home Based Workers came together in public spaces to exhibit and sell their products.
The Home Based Workers in Nagaland are mostly engaged in craft work – weaving and knitting, food processing – pickle and candies, basket weavers, tailors and some showcased their culinary skills through street food stalls. The locals supported the event by visiting the stalls, interacting with the HBWs and making purchases.
North East Network and SEWA (Self Employed Women Association) have been working together since 2013 in Nagaland. We have continued to support each other towards the same vision of creating gender justice for a more equitable society. The event witnessed the solidarity of the sisterhood between NEN and SEWA as both came together to raise awareness on the need to recognise different trades of the unorganised sector, especially women who contribute immensely to the economy and families yet remain invisible and unrecognised.
From the four locations – Kohima Town, Pfutsero Town, Shamator Town and Dimapur Town a total sales of Rs. 1,38,480/- was made in a single day, indicating the role of HBW and their contribution to the local and national economy. The day also demonstrated the need to visibilise their roles and issues, to ensure livelihood opportunities and to strengthen the collective efforts.
“It is a good experience for us, we are affirming that we are workers too, we are glad to be part of the event where we are making a stand for ourselves and also creating a platform to sell our produce. We look forward to this kind of event more” shared Vidane, a home based worker from Pfutsero