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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

UNDER DEVELOPMENT UNICEF Innocenti's curated library of COVID-19 + Children research

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In solidarity with girls: gender and education in crisis
Published: September 2020

Drawing on the ‘build back better’ principle, this brief contributes to policy dialogues and discussions on how we can plan for and work towards more equal, gender-responsive school systems once restrictions are lifted. This policy brief builds on the content of an intergenerational dialogue that is representative of the wider youth network that each advocate represents. The dialogue focused on the gendered impacts of school closures and youth-led, innovative responses that are being undertaken in different contexts. It also explored some policy measures and actions aimed at governments, policymakers, and other key stakeholders to promote girls’ return to school. This brief contributes to policy dialogues and discussions on how we can transform our education systems to work better for girls. The intergenerational dialogue on which this policy brief is based discussed the existing inequalities that have been exacerbated through the pandemic, with a focus on the gender digital divide. The brief also outlines concrete actions to rebuild a ‘new normal’ in education post COVID-19, alongside visions for more gender equal, inclusive education systems. The recommendations are aimed at governments, policymakers, funders and other key stakeholders in the gender and education space.

The hidden impact of COVID-19 on gender equality

AUTHOR(S)
et al.

Institution: Save the Children
Published: September 2020
As COVID-19 has spread rapidly across the globe, governments have implemented measures to contain the spread of the pandemic, including school closures, home isolation/quarantine and community lockdowns. These measures have exacerbated gender inequalities, impacting the lives of children and households. This research highlights gendered differences in several areas related to children and COVID-19, with an emphasis on how gender inequalities intersect with disability and displacement status. Recommendations are based on Save the Children’s COVID-19 research, lessons from ongoing programming, and existing studies.
A case for girl-child education to prevent and curb the impact of emerging infectious diseases epidemics

AUTHOR(S)
Shadrack Frimpong; Elijah Paintsil

Published: September 2020   Journal: Yale Journal of Biology and Medicine
Not only do epidemics such as HIV/AIDS, Ebola Virus Disease (EVD), and the current Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) cause the loss of millions of lives, but they also cost the global economy billions of dollars. Consequently, there is an urgent need to formulate interventions that will help control their spread and impact when they emerge. The education of young girls and women is one such historical approach. They are usually the vulnerable targets of disease outbreaks – they are most likely to be vehicles for the spread of epidemics due to their assigned traditional roles in resource-limited countries. Based on our work and the work of others on educational interventions, this study proposes six critical components of a cost-effective and sustainable response to promote girl-child education in resource-limited settings.
African girls in the Covid-19 pandemic
Institution: Plan International
Published: August 2020

As countries across Africa experience the impact of COVID-19 across health systems, economies and communities, progress made in the last decade in achieving the rights of adolescent girls’ risks being lost. African governments must act in urgency to address this “invisible crisis" and protect the important gains made to protect, and empower girls over the last decade.COVID-19, an unfolding global health crisis, is revealing a grim impact on millions of adolescent girls across Africa. Along with rising infection rates across countries in the continent, the disease is compounding challenges to girls’ agency, protection, learning and leadership. The African response to the pandemic will – if unchecked - roll back important gains made in ensuring African girls’ access and enjoyment of human rights. COVID-19 is emerging as not only a health crisis but a significant protection crisis for adolescent girls across the continent.

Halting lives: the impact of Covid-19 on girls and young women

AUTHOR(S)
Sharon Goulds; Isobel Fergus; Esther Winslow

Institution: Plan International
Published: August 2020

As cases of COVID-19 continue to spread worldwide it is becoming clear that the outbreak of this virus has implications that reach far beyond the direct impact on people’s physical health. What started as a health emergency is causing fundamental shifts in society as governments struggle to try and contain the crisis. COVID-19 is having an impact on all sectors of society across the world. But its impact does not fall equally: the virus is taking advantage of pre-existing inequalities. As the world has sought desperately to deal both with the medical impacts of the virus and to prepare a response to its many secondary effects, research on COVID-19 has accelerated. However, there is limited research on the social impacts of COVID-19 and on the consequences for young people, especially those specific to girls. Plan International commissioned research to look specifically at the impact of the current pandemic on girls and young women, collecting data from over 7,000 girls across 14 countries. The report also includes extracts from interviews with young women, reflecting on the impact COVID-19 has had on their lives in Mozambique, Brazil, Ghana and Nicaragua. The scale of this pandemic affects girls and young women in all aspects of their daily lives: their safety, wellbeing, education, economic security, health, nutrition and access to technology. All pre-existing inequalities are made worse by COVID-19. Its impact on girls and young women, who face unique vulnerabilities, needs to be acknowledged and it is their experiences and perspectives this research seeks to understand.

Building back equal: girls back to school guide
Institution: Malala Fund, Plan International, *UNICEF, UNESCO
Published: August 2020

COVID-19 unprecedented disruption to education has the potential to roll back substantial gains made on girls’ education in recent decades, with broader immediate and longer-term effects on the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals, including those related to poverty reduction, health and well-being, inclusive quality education and gender equality. The guide, developed by the Malala Fund, Plan International, UNESCO, UNGEI and UNICEF, aims to help policymakers and practitioners in ministries of education and their partners address the gender dimensions of the pandemic-related school closures. It provides targeted recommendations to ensure continuity of learning while schools are closed, and to establish comprehensive, timely and evidence-based plans for reopening schools in a way that is safe, gender-responsive and child-friendly.

Responding to the shadow pandemic: taking stock of gender-based violence risks and responses during COVID-19
Institution: *UNICEF
Published: August 2020

Governments’ responses to the COVID-19 pandemic have had devastating effects on women and girls. Gender-Based Violence is a problem of human-rights, public health and development. It is also a problem that has had devastating effects for women and girls during the COVID-19 pandemic. This real-time emergent learning brief has been prepared for UNICEF Country Offices and Practitioners as they respond to gender-based violence during the pandemic. Drawing on evidence from UNICEF country experiences, the brief identifies emerging risks related to gender-based violence; highlights programme responses and adaptations; and outlines key points for programming, advocacy and systems change.

Education needs assessment report: adolescent and youth women and girls in the rohingya refugee camps

AUTHOR(S)
Margo Goll; Andreia Soares; Tanjeeba Chowdhury

Published: June 2020
Dan Church Aid (DCA) and UN Women (UNW) carried out an education needs assessment between February 26 and March 19, 2020 with the aim of understanding the priority needs for Rohingya adolescent and youth girls and women living in the refugee camps and makeshift settlements in Cox’s Bazar, Bangladesh. The assessment sought to identify education needs and trends among young women and to develop evidence-based prioritization for a DCA/ UNW project designed to provide second chance education opportunities for Rohingya adolescent girls and women.
The Secondary Impacts of COVID-19 on Women and Girls in Sub-Saharan Africa

AUTHOR(S)
Tal Rafaeli; Geraldine Hutchinson

Published: June 2020   Journal: K4D Helpdesk Report
Based on emerging evidence and lessons from past health crises, there is strong evidence to suggest that women and girls in SSA will suffer from extreme and multifaceted negative secondary impact as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. Some of which may include higher poverty rates, increase in unplanned pregnancies, a surge in school dropout rates and child labour of adolescent girls, loss of income and reduced financial empowerment, increased household work, reduced access to healthcare and WASH alongside increased maternal deaths, and greater food insecurity and malnutrition.
Gendered impacts of COVID-19 and equitable policy responses in agriculture, food security and nutrition

AUTHOR(S)
Susan Kaaria; Erdgin Mane; Tacko Ndiaye (et al.)

This brief compiles evidence from current and previous epidemics to explore the socio-economic implications of the impact of the pandemic on food systems and rural economies, and how a gender-sensitive approach can help address key policy issues related to the functioning of food and agricultural systems and the special circumstances of rural women. It also provides concrete policy recommendations to mitigate the impacts of the pandemic on rural women and girls.
Girls' education and COVID-19: what past shocks can teach us about mitigating the impact of pandemics

AUTHOR(S)
Lucia Fry; Philippa Lei; Naomi Nyamweya (et al.)

Institution: Malala Fund
Published: April 2020

This report uses insights from the 2014-15 Ebola epidemic and the 2008 global financial crisis to understand the short- and long-term consequences of COVID-19 for girls. Following the Ebola outbreak and school closures in Sierra Leone, Guinea and Liberia, enrolment rates for girls dropped. Increased rates of poverty, household responsibilities, child labour and teenage pregnancy as well as restrictive school policies prevented many girls from returning to the classroom. The epidemic also reduced funding for education as governments diverted funds to public health and put a strain on the preexisting teacher shortage. Girls' education and COVID-19 suggests how governments and international institutions can mitigate the effects of the current pandemic and help girls return to school, including finding ways to keep girls learning during the pandemic, factoring in gender when planning for reopening schools and making sure that education systems have adequate financing in the post-crisis months and years.

Girl-focused life skills interventions at a distance

AUTHOR(S)
Tal Rafaeli

Institution: Institute of Development Studies
Published: April 2020
This rapid review explores the evidence and lessons learned about engaging girls in life skills interventions at a distance (i.e. through mobile, online, radio or other) both in emergency and non-emergency settings. The purpose of the review is to assist programmes in identifying relevant and effective ways to continue and build girls’ life skills remotely during the widespread school closures and quarantine of the COVID-19 crisis (Albrectsen and Giannini, 2020). The main interest of the review is emergency contexts, however, the limited evidence as well as the potential for learning from programmes from non-emergency settings, led to the inclusion of non-emergency settings in the review.
Global rapid gender analysis for COVID-19
Institution: CARE, International Rescue Committee
Published: March 2020

This report is for humanitarians working in fragile contexts that are likely to be affected by the COVID-19 crisis. It is organised around broad themes and areas of focus of particular importance to those whose programming advances gender equality and reduces gender inequalities. It seeks to deepen the current gender analysis available by encompassing learning from global gender data available for the COVID-19 public health emergency.

Gender implications of COVID-19 outbreaks in development and humanitarian settings
Published: March 2020
There is a marked lack of research on the implications of public health emergencies on different groups, especially women and girls. Less than 1 percent of published research papers on the 2014–16 West Africa Ebola virus disease (EVD) outbreak and the 2016 Zika outbreak focused on the gender dimensions of the emergencies. Research on the gender implications of previous health emergencies is even more scarce. CARE’s analysis shows that COVID-19 outbreaks in development or humanitarian contexts could disproportionately affect women and girls in a number of ways, including adverse effects on their education, food security and nutrition, health, livelihoods, and protection. Even after the outbreak has been contained, women and girls may continue to suffer from ill-effects for years to come.
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UNICEF Innocenti's Children and COVID-19 Library is a database collecting research from around the world on COVID-19 and its impacts on children and adolescents.

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COVID-19 & Children: Rapid Research Response

UNICEF Innocenti is mobilizing a rapid research response in line with UNICEF’s global response to the COVID-19 crisis. The initiatives we’ve begun will provide the broad range of evidence needed to inform our work to scale up rapid assessment, develop urgent mitigating strategies in programming and advocacy, and preparation of interventions to respond to the medium and longer-term consequences of the COVID-19 crisis. The research projects cover a rapid review of evidence, education analysis, and social and economic policies.