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Kumari Magar – Maid, Nepal (June 2013)

Kumari Magar migrated to Katmandu where she cleans houses for US$50 per month. Struggling to get by, the 30-year-old single woman now regrets her decision
(Naresh Newar/IRIN)

Name: Kumari Magar

Age: 31

Location: Machache

Does your spouse/partner live with you? I’m single.

What is your primary job? Domestic Worker

What is your monthly salary? $80 (working in two households)

What is your household’s total income - including your partner’s salary, and any additional same sources? $170 (including income from my sister and her husband) from $90

How many people are living in your household - what is their relationship to you? Three - a sister, her husband and their 10-year old daughter from two - a brother and sister

How many are dependent on you/your partner's income - what is their relationship to you? My sister and her daughter now depend more on me. Her income remains low, and her husband, a labourer, is constantly between jobs. Sometimes he is jobless as there is no regular construction work around. My elderly parents also need my support, so each month I try to send them around $15.

How much do you spend each month on food? $35. from $25

What is your main staple - how much does it cost each month? Rice and vegetables. $35 from $25

How much do you spend on rent? $40. from $20

How much on transport? $35. from $30

How much do you spend on educating your children each month? I don’t have any children.

After you have paid all your bills each month, how much is left? $15. from nothing

Have you or any member of the household been forced to skip meals or reduce portion sizes in the last three months? No. Fortunately, I have not been sick during this period.

Have you been forced to borrow money (or food) in the last three months to cover basic household needs? No. Fortunately, things have not been that bad for me in recent months.

Better
Worse
No change

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Kumari Magar migrated to Katmandu where she cleans houses for US$50 per month. Struggling to get by, the 30-year-old single woman now regrets her decision
Naresh Newar/IRIN
Kumari Magar migrated to Katmandu where she cleans houses for US$50 per month. Struggling to get by, the 30-year-old single woman now regrets her decision
http://www.irinnews.org/photo/
Thursday, November 8, 2012
Kumari Magar – Domestique au Népal
Kumari Magar migrated to Katmandu where she cleans houses for US$50 per month. Struggling to get by, the 30-year-old single woman now regrets her decision
"My life is a better because of my new employers, as their business is good"
KATHMANDU, June 2013 (IRIN) - Although Kumari Magar, 31, now earns US$80 cleaning houses in Kathmandu - up from $50 in December 2012 - life remains tough. She now has to provide additional support for her sister and brother-in-law, as well as her sister’s 10-year-old daughter from a previous marriage.

Although Magar and her sister both have jobs, her sister earns little as a domestic worker, and her brother-in-law struggles to find work in the building trade following a recent dip in the construction business.

At the same time, Magar is also helping to support another sibling.

“My brother recently got married and moved out with his wife. They now live separately from us. Sometimes, they run out of money, so I try to help them out when I can, as my brother had always been very supportive of me when I needed help.”

Compared to her situation in December 2012, Magar’s life has improved. She has found two new employers, both of whom work in the grocery trade.

“My life is a better because of my new employers, as their business is good. I left the old employers because they paid so little. Now I can actually save a little bit of money.

“Prices have increased again because of a rise in fuel prices. However, we manage by spending more carefully on food. We drink less milk and eat less butter, as well less meat. Concerns over bird flu have also pushed us to eat more vegetables.

“My new employers often give us clothes and leftover food, including vegetables each week. I hope they keep me for a long time.”

< December 2012

 

 


This article was produced by IRIN News while it was part of the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs. Please send queries on copyright or liability to the UN. For more information: https://shop.un.org/rights-permissions

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