Research updates

Data collection: first rounds

The first two rounds of data collection for the GrOW project in Rajasthan, India, kicked off in the last week of November 2015. The ISST India

team visited remote tribal villages of two districts in Udaipur and Dungarpur. Surveys of 50 women in each of the districts and participatory activities with groups of women, men and children of these villages revealed harsh living conditions such as no electricity, far off sources of water, absence of crèche facilities, and sometimes even no roads. Furthermore, women experienced biased gender roles that primarily assigned care responsibilities including collection of water, collection of wood (for fuel) from the forest areas, and household chores to the women of the family. As nuclear family system was a norm in these tribal villages, care responsibilities of the women were further heightened with fewer women in the family to fall back on.

Besides care responsibilities, women engaged in paid work under the employment guarantee programme of the government called Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA), private construction sites of nongovernmental organisations and self employed in their own agricultural fields or selling vegetables. However, women reported that there were no proper facilities available at the work site to support their care responsibilities, they depended on their extended family or older kids or elderly in the family to take on some of the care work, while the women managed the remaining care work by putting in more of their time. Hence, the hard living and working conditions combined with discriminatory gender roles had resulted in acute time poverty and drudgery for women.