Capturing the impact of Climate Change – realities from the ground

Indo Global Social Service Society(IGSSS) since its inception in 1960s has been working to create a humane social order based on truth, equity, freedom, and justice with special emphasis on women, children, and the vulnerable sections of society. The organization started working on urban issues since 2011 and in the past couple of decades, strengthened its understanding on urban issues. Through 2015-2020, IGSSS work has benefitted more than 200,000 urban poor. Over time, IGSSS felt a pressing need to address the issue of Climate Change on the lives of Urban Poor –  primarily the informal workers. IGSSS recently started working in Kolkata Metropolitan Region with informal workers.

Frequency and intensity of extreme weather events is increasing globally as a result of Climate Change. Livelihood, living and working conditions of many communities is at risk, especially informal sector workers. In India as per labour force survey, around 88% of total employment was in the informal sector, exposed to the adverse effects of increasing temperature, heat wave frequent and violent storms, etc. India as a developing country have fewer adaptive mechanisms, are disproportionately affected by climate change than developed nations. Women are more vulnerable to the adverse effects of climate change than men. Women constitute most of the world’s poor people thus have less access to financial resource than men. Mobility of women is less than men and they are more dependent for their livelihood on natural resources that are easily affected by climate change. In the patriarchal society women face social, economic, and political barriers which limit their coping capacity towards climate change. But there are less evidences and narratives of women which can help us to understand the impact of Climate Change on lives and livelihood of urban informal women workers.

To observe International Women’s Day IGSSS is organizing a day long workshop with an aim to “Inspire Inclusion” aligned with the global theme of International Women’s Day with an aim to increase “investment on women to accelerate progress”. Through this workshop IGSSS is trying to gather evidence and narratives from the informal women workers. The objective of the workshop is to include the voices of women workers who are actively involved in building and functioning of the city but their voices remain unheard in the area development plans Their reflection and sharing will help to develop understanding about the direct and indirect impact of Climate Change on their lives and livelihood. Women workers from different categories like Construction workers, Domestic Worker, Street Vendor, Beedi Worker, Waste Pickers will share their experience. Civil Society Organizations working with the informal workers also share their perspective. Climate experts will try to share their knowledge to get clarity on the global picture. Officials from Government departments will share about different Government initiatives to address the issue.

Date: 13th of March 2024.

Venue: Seva Kendra Kolkata (52B, Radhanath Chowdhury Rd, Seal Lane, Tangra, Kolkata, West Bengal 700015)

Time: 10.30 A.M – 5.00 P.M