Interview with Ela Bhatt| 32mins
Director: Culture Unplugged Studios | Producer: Culture Unplugged Studios
Focus Years: 2010 | Country: United States
Ela Bhatt is the founder of the Self Employed Womenâ€™s Association (SEWA) and was SEWAâ€™s first general-secretary. Based in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India, SEWA is the largest single trade union in the country with a membership of 687,000 women. SEWAâ€™s members are vegetable and garment vendors, in-home seamstresses, head-loaders, bidi rollers, paper pickers, construction workers, incense stick makers, and agricultural workers. They come from India's "unorganized sector" and organize for their just dues and rights. 96% of all women workers in India are in this sector. Among their achievements is the SEWA Bank whose capital is made up entirely of their own contributions. The SEWA Bank was founded in 1974 by 4,000 women each contributing ten rupees.