SEWA Bharat Fellowship

About SEWA Bharat:

Self Employed Women’s Association (SEWA) is a movement to empower women working in the informal economy. SEWA Bharat is part of the national SEWA movement. Established in 1984, it is a national federation of SEWA organizations of women working in the informal economy. SEWA Bharat emerged out of the need to address the SEWA movement’s challenges with geographical expansion and coordination. SEWA Bharat comprises a family of SEWA organizations to further informal women workers’ rights, livelihoods, financial independence, education, health and social security.

Why this fellowship:

Over the last 5 years, SEWA Bharat has been welcoming young professionals: college-educated individuals in their 20s, who are motivated to work in the development sector and with women in the informal economy. We have had interns, full-time employees, and fellows from several programs (IIC, India fellowship, Gandhi fellows, SBI fellowship) join our team in fulfilling our vision. It has been an enriching experience that has only reaffirmed our observation that fresh ideas, energy, and innovation come together when such young professionals work alongside our informal women workers.

Post pandemic, the focus of SEWA has been to enable informal women workers to rebuild their livelihoods and sustain them in the face of natural adversities. To this end, we have been incubating/ supporting our members (women workers of the informal economy) to collectivize and start running small businesses as microentrepreneurs and social enterprises. These have played a pivotal role in putting them on the road to full employment and self-reliance.

This fellowship will be a learning opportunity for the youth to work directly with grassroots women who are business leaders.

Glimpse of the fellowship:

We aim to provide an immersive experience for the fellows, who will work with the women in the informal economy, and their social enterprises. They will get a first-hand opportunity to assist grassroots women in addressing their challenges around running a business sustainably. The fellowship year is interspersed with:

  • Structured learning phases: During Orientation and Mid-Year
  • Mentoring support throughout the fellowship,
    • Direct reporting to social enterprise managers
    • Monthly discussions with the Fellowship Manager and State Coordinator 
    • Monthly Learning Sessions with Program Leads/States across SEWA – Online sessions 
  • Self Development Opportunities
    • Opportunity to write articles / lead podcast development for publishing on any of SEWA Bharat’s communication channels (monthly newsletter, LinkedIn, website, notion, Spotify)
    • Passion Project with the social enterprise in the last quarter

Start Date: August 2022 Duration: 14 months | Stipend: INR 30,000/ month Batch Size: 10 fellows


Fellows will be embedded within women-run collective social enterprises in the following locations for the duration of the fellowship.
(Almora, Pithoragarh) Uttarakhand, West Bengal, Delhi, (Munger, Katihar) Bihar, Jharkhand, (Ferozpur) Punjab.

3 Reasons to explore a fellowship with SEWA Bharat:

  • Work at the intersection of Gender + Informality + Livelihoods
  • Gain exposure to SEWA’s proof of concept models built on a 50-year-long experience that has inspired work all across the world
  • Find opportunities for full-time jobs within SEWA Bharat after program completion

Ideal Candidates:

Fellows at SEWA Bharat are self-driven college graduates who are keen on finding solutions to the structural issues plaguing the informal economy and eventually looking to build a career in the development sector. SEWA Bharat is keen on onboarding locals who aspire to work for the area they grew up in and want to upskill the local professionals within their community. We encourage candidates from marginalized backgrounds to actively apply for this fellowship.

Apply Now:

Interested candidates should write to [email protected] with the email subject ‘Application for SEWA Bharat Fellowship’, along with your resume and a write-up that mentions why they are interested in the fellowship. Shortlisted applicants will be notified by the end of June 22,2022.