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Help free 50 women from slavery

Focus: Livelihoods , Women

35% Funded
THE job of cleaning dry latrines of human excreta is a discriminatory, caste-based practice prevalent throughout rural and semi-urban India. Help Jan Sahas free 50 manual scavengers from this filthy occupation.

Across 21st century India, a million Dalits - mainly women - still lift and carry heavy loads of excrement in cane baskets to designated sites for disposal on a daily basis.

In spite of the recent amendment in the Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act 2013, not a single violator has been prosecuted. Support Jan Sahas in trying to end this form of intergenerational slavery.

All it takes is a little bit from everyone!

Thank you for your donation! People like you are creating a new generation of givers

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Every donation goes towards freeing manual scavengers from this filthy job.

The fundraiser has been extended to try and achieve the target by the end of tax year!

The funds raised will help in mobilising 17 manual scavengers, making them aware of alternate livelihoods and training them for dignified jobs.

The funds were used to educate 45 manual scavengers about alternate livelihood options. Check out the impact update for details!


Being assigned the job of manually cleaning other people's dry toilets, septic tanks and sewers based on caste, class and gender is discrimination at its worst. Manual scavengers, 95% of whom are women, are paid next to nothing and vulnerable to violence and eviction from the community if they quit. With Jan Sahas's help, those freed have found proper jobs, accessed government schemes for their rehabilitation and even stood for local elections.

Manual scavengers are forced to do this filthy job and are vulnerable to violence if they quit.

Even though the employment of manual scavengers is illegal in India, according to the 2011 census 750,000 households across the country continue to require their services. Dalits constitute 23% of households in Uttar Pradesh, a large percentage of who depend on manual scavenging as their only means of livelihood, being barred from any other occupation. As Jan Sahas founder Ashif Shaikh says: “It is not even a job, it’s slavery.”

When Dalit women are doing work like this, society never considers it inhuman or abnormal — we think that they are born only to do this and give them some money. Citizens must realize it’s not acceptable to send someone down a gutter or a drain.

Bezwada Wilson, Safai Karamchari Andolan, 2016 Magsaysay Award winner, New Delhi

The continuance of manual scavenging constitutes a gross violation of human rights and the worth of the human person, and flies in the face of the Constitutional guarantee assured [...] of a life with dignity for every individual of the country.

Report of Sub Group on Safai Karamcharis, 11th Five Year Plan, New Delhi

Jan Sahas will meet the families of 50 manual scavengers of the 350 already identified to make them aware of alternative livelihoods and their right to be liberated from their occupation. A common meeting will be held for further familiarisation, peer support and, as a symbolic act, will together vow never return to their "jobs" and burn the baskets they used. Then workshops on livelihoods and government rehabilitation schemes will be conducted.

Manual scavenging takes away their dignity and has a profound effect on their well-being.
Alternative livelihood workshop held
by Jan Sahas
14 June 2018

Thank you for your generous contribution to this fundraiser!

With your support, we raised ₹51,966 which helped us educate 45 manual scavengers about other available options for earning a livelihood. These women participated in Dignity Workshop where they were acquainted with Garima Abhiyaan, its objective, and the work we have done so far. 

They were also given capacity building workshop where they were oriented about opting alternative livelihood options. The funds raised were used for travel, stationery, and food of the participants in two workshops.