NAT 200715 WORKERS-1594816169566
More than 500 workers facing tough situation due to job losses and being sent on unpaid leaves include many families, mothers with small babies sought help from the Indian community’s ladies association. Image Credit: Supplied

Abu Dhabi: Over 500 workers struggling due to job losses and furlough due to the coronavirus pandemic have been helped by the Indian Ladies Association (ILA).

ILA president Sunita Wagle, said, “The ILA feels privileged to provide platform to support needy people during this testing COVID-19 time with the basic necessities. The ILA has been instrumental in distributing grocery, food kits, hygiene kits to more than 500 workers facing a very tough situation due to the loss of their jobs or unpaid leaves.”

“People from different nationalities were supported. Families with small babies needing baby products like nappies, fresh fruits, milk were also supported in best possible way,” she said.

Wagle narrated a story of a mother who approached the ILA whose baby was recommended to have a specific milk powder due to health concerns and mother was really sad as she couldn’t afford to get the formula milk. The ILA provided best possible help in all these cases.

Labour groups and clusters, maids, parlour helpers, caretakers, watchmen, some families with small children’s and infants were also helped by the association, she said.

The ILA has been doing humanitarian efforts since mid of April and so far, thousands of workers were reached in different kinds of approaches of help of meals, masks and sanitary kits.

Now she said, the requests for help have reduced as many who were without work and cancelled visas have returned home, but the ILA continues to serve the community.

“We have been privileged to help people from different nationalities including Indians, Pakistanis, Nepalese and Filipinos,” Wagle said.

Soni Satish Singh, special secretary at the ILA, said, “We have supplied over 500 food and sanitation kits to maids, janitors, saloon employees, and all people in need regardless of their ethnic background.

“Many of them were the bread-winners of their household. When I had contacted a woman to provide her with a food kit, she had additionally requested me for a certain brand of milk-powder for her baby, which we provided her,” Singh said.

Shaveta Kapoor Duggal, official from the ILA, coordinated with workers’ groups and got leads about blue collared workers in groups and clusters in need. Whereas Archana Malhotra from the ILA checked in the groups and if anyone knew of someone in need she contacted them without delay.

The ILA expressed its sincere thanks to their sponsors including Lulu Exchange, volunteers and members who supported the drive.