progetto cambia terra

Change your land

The invisible women agricultural workers

Women’s Rights


Council for Agricultural Research and Economics (CREA), Flai-CGIL (Puglia, Basilicata e Calabria), Labsus


ActionAid, CREA-PB


Local action groups, Local authorities and institutions

Objective of the project

Contribute to the reduction of women rural workers’ exploitation and the improvement of access to social services and work-life balance 

Context analysis

Over the last years, particularly during the economic crisis, the number of foreigner male and female seasonal workers in the italian agricultural sector has increased significantly. This has translated into new forms of human mobility and settlements which bring about new needs.  For instance, in some areas characterised by intensive farming (usually closer to urban areas) gaps related to housing and access to social, health and welfare services have emerged.

Sectoral studies emphasize that women agricultural workers are more vulnerable than men. In 2018, CREA and ActionAid developed a study titled  “The invisible” to analyse the growing phenomenon of feminization of agriculture in Apulia region. The precarious nature of job contracts, the lack of women dedicated welfare services and fragile supporting newtorks and institutions make the conditions of these women less visible to authorities and organizations. In this context, gender-based violence appears to be a characteristic of a productive system that exploits foreign women rural workers and exposes them to different sorts of violence including physical, psychological and economic.

Basilicata, Italy

Calabria, Italy

Puglia, Italy

The project is implemented in 3 regions Basilicata, Calabria and Puglia.

Implementation Period

01/04/2019 - 31/03/2020



  • 40 women rural workers
  • 40 local associations
  • 3 local institutions


  • 500 women rural workers 
  • 30 entrepreneurs
  • 3 local communities 

Project Intervention Logic


  • Conduct a comparative analysis of the socio-economic situation of the three target areas with three rural areas in Spain (Huelva, Vigo, Saragoza)
  • Conduct a participatory analysis with the women rural workers  on access to social services and labour rights
  • Strengthen local networks for the protection of women’s rights and the promotion of sustainable rural development  
  • Pilot of 3 social services targeting women rural workers


  • 1 updated database on the women rural workers’ needs 
  • Guidelines for the implementation of the Collaboration Pacts 
  • One digital information sharing system
  • 1 policy document to improve social inclusion policies for foreigner women rural workers 


  • The local community and institutional networks for the protection and the inclusion of foreigner women rural workers are strengthened 
  • The accessibility and quality of welfare services for foreigner women rural workers are improved through innovative solutions

Are you interested in a partnership in the field of Women's Rights?