Empowering Women to Improve Awareness and Access to Tenure, Infrastructure and Finance in Informal Settlements : Learning Study of the Zamini Adhikar Abhiyaan


SEWA launched the Zamini Adhikar Abhiyaan (ZAA) for the economic empowerment of women workers in informal settlements through awareness generation, infrastructure provisioning, land tenure security, and provisioning for housing finance. The pilot project was implemented in six settlements in Delhi and Patna with varying jurisdictional, demographic, and socio-economic contexts. The three-year period was marked by disruptions such as the COVID-19 pandemic, lockdowns, floods, and other socio-political disturbances. Consequently, SEWA adapted its strategies to overcome these challenges.

This study examines SEWA’s methodology and strategies using a mixed methods approach, including a review of SEWA literature and field engagement through interviews and focus group discussions with SEWA staff, agewans, elected representatives, and community members. The study analyses the pilot project across, first, capacity building process, community mobilization and stakeholder participation; second, quality of infrastructure services, tenure, and housing finance as perceived by residents; and third, challenges, evolution and readjustment of strategies. Drawing lessons from these, the learning study suggests a way forward for the future expansion of the Zamini Adhikar Abhiyaan programme.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.24943/EWIAAT06.2023