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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

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

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1 - 15 of 82
Family systems cultural and resilience dimensions to consider in nutrition interventions: exploring preschoolers’ eating and physical activity routines during COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Pamela Rothpletz-Puglia; Erika Ryan; Veronica M. Jones (et al.)

Published: April 2022   Journal: Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior

This study aims to describe the weight-related family functioning of racial minority families with low income using family systems theory as an interpretive framework. Primarily a qualitative study with interviews plus; descriptive demographics, anthropometrics, a family functioning measure, and food insecurity screening.

Poverty and food insecurity during COVID-19: phone-survey evidence from rural and urban Myanmar in 2020

AUTHOR(S)
Derek Headey; Sophie Goudet; Isabel Lambrecht (et al.)

Published: April 2022   Journal: Global Food Security
Myanmar first experienced the COVID-19 crisis as a relatively brief economic shock in early 2020, before the economy was later engulfed by a prolonged surge in COVID-19 cases from September 2020 onwards. To analyze poverty and food security in Myanmar during 2020 we surveyed over 2000 households per month from June–December in urban Yangon and the rural dry zone. By June, households had suffered dramatic increases in poverty, but even steeper increases accompanied the rise in COVID-19 cases from September onwards. Increases in poverty were much larger in urban areas, although poverty was always more prevalent in the rural sample. However, urban households were twice as likely to report food insecurity experiences, suggesting rural populations felt less food insecure throughout the crisis.
Measuring food insecurity during the Young Lives COVID-19 phone surveys

AUTHOR(S)
Douglas Scott

Institution: Young Lives
Published: March 2022

Throughout Young Lives, This study has provided various measures of food insecurity. These include the Household Food Insecurity Access Scale (HFIAS), developed by the Food and Nutrition Technical Assistance Project (FANTA) (Coates, Swindale, and Bilinsky 2007), but also stand-alone questions, such as ‘Was there ever no food to eat in your household because of a lack of money?’ which was employed across different survey rounds in all four Young Lives study countries: Ethiopia, India (the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana), Peru and Vietnam. In response to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the Listening to Young Lives at Work was conducted: COVID-19 phone survey to record the experiences of young people during the outbreak. To estimate food insecurity in the four study countries the Food and Agricultural Organisation’s (FAO) Food Insecurity Experience Scale (FIES) (Cafiero, Viviani, and Nord 2018) have been utilised . This technical note provides information on how estimates of food insecurity were calculated using the FIES approach, in a manner comparable to the methods used by the FAO to inform the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) food security indicator.

Diet and food insecurity among mothers, infants, and young children in Peru before and during COVID-19: a panel survey

AUTHOR(S)
Rebecca Pradeilles; Rossina Pareja; Hilary M. Creed-Kanashiro (et al.)

Published: March 2022   Journal: Maternal & Child Nutrition
The COVID-19 pandemic may impact diet and nutrition through increased household food insecurity, lack of access to health services, and poorer quality diets. The primary aim of this study is to assess the impact of the pandemic on dietary outcomes of mothers and their infants and young children (IYC) in low-income urban areas of Peru. It conducted a panel study, with one survey prepandemic (n = 244) and one survey 9 months after the onset of COVID-19 (n = 254). IT assessed breastfeeding and complementary feeding indicators and maternal dietary diversity in both surveys. During COVID-19, it assessed household food insecurity experience and economic impacts of the pandemic on livelihoods; receipt of financial or food assistance, and uptake of health services.
Food insecurity in households of children with ASD in COVID-19 pandemic: a comparative analysis with the Household pulse survey data using stabilized inverse probability treatment weights

AUTHOR(S)
Arun Karpur; Vijay Vasudevan; Thomas W. Frazier (et al.)

Published: March 2022   Journal: Disability and Health Journal

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, households of children on the autism spectrum were more likely to be food insecure than households of children without disabilities. With the unprecedented social, public health, and economic disruption caused by the pandemic, food insecurity has likely increased among families of children on the autism spectrum. This analysis aims to compare the prevalence of food insecurity between survey administered during the Fall of 2020 and a nationally representative sample from the Household Pulse Survey (HPS) data collected during a similar timeframe.

Food insecurity, depressive symptoms, and the salience of gendered family roles during the COVID-19 pandemic in South Africa

AUTHOR(S)
Debra L. Shepherd

Published: February 2022   Journal: Social Science & Medicine
Extensive research has indicated food insecurity to be associated with depressive symptoms, both of which have been indicated to increase globally during the COVID-19 pandemic. Few studies, however, have made use of nationally representative and longitudinal data to investigate this relationship, making causal claims difficult. In South Africa (SA), as with other low- and middle-income contexts, population-based studies have generally focused on mothers during the perinatal period and other vulnerable groups. This study made use of Cross-Lagged Dynamic Panel Models to examine the relationship between household food insecurity and the depressive symptoms of adults across three waves of the National Income Dynamics Survey–Coronavirus Rapid Mobile Survey (NIDS-CRAM) study collected in 2020 and 2021, a dataset nationally representative of all adults in SA in 2017. Stratification of the sample by gender, parenthood and marital statuses allowed for the assessment of gender differences in family roles that might account for differential impacts of food insecurity on mental health outcomes.
Lebanese crisis forcing youth out of learning, robbing them of their futures: UNICEF survey
Institution: *UNICEF
Published: February 2022

As Lebanon’s triple crisis continues to worsen, youth are struggling to find hope, support and opportunities amid mounting despair. The combined impact of an economic meltdown, the COVID-19 pandemic and the 2020 Beirut Port explosions are forcing youth from all backgrounds to take on responsibilities beyond their ages, with detrimental impacts on their mental health and on access to opportunities. More and more young people are dropping out of education or any type of learning to engage in ill-paid, irregular and informal work to generate whatever income they can to help their families cope with the mounting challenges. UNICEF’s new assessment shows that 3 in 10 young people in Lebanon have stopped their education, while 4 in 10 reduced spending on education to buy essential items like basic food and medicine. The combined impact of the crises has led to a significant increase in mental health issues among young people, resulting in risky behaviour and substance abuse, as well as an increase in gender-based violence (GBV). Approximately one in four adolescents in Lebanon suffers from a psychiatric disorder. Alarmingly, 94 per cent of adolescents with a mental disorder have not sought any treatment. In September 2021, UNICEF conducted a Youth-Focused Rapid Assessment (YFRA), interviewing around 900 youth and adolescents aged 15 to 246 across Lebanon. One in four reported often feeling depressed and just over half the respondents said their lives worsened over the past year.

Lockdown-associated hunger may be affecting breastfeeding: findings from a large SMS survey in South Africa

AUTHOR(S)
Nazeeia Sayed; Ronelle Burger; Abigail Harper (et al.)

Published: December 2021   Journal: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
The impact that the COVID-19 pandemic has had, and will continue to have, on food security and child health is especially concerning. A rapid, Short Message Service (SMS) Maternal and Child Health survey was conducted in South Africa in June 2020 (n = 3140), with a follow-up in July 2020 (n = 2287). This was a national cross-sectional survey conducted among pregnant women and mothers registered with the MomConnect mhealth platform. Logistic regression was conducted to explore the associations between breastfeeding, maternal depressive symptoms, and hunger in the household. High breastfeeding initiation rates and the early introduction of other foods or mixed milk feeding were found.
A generational catastrophe: COVID-19 and children’s access to education and food in South Africa

AUTHOR(S)
Debra Shepherd; Nompumelelo Mohohlwane

Published: December 2021   Journal: Development Southern Africa
Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, children have been put at greater risk of school drop-out, as well as food insecurity and emotional health deterioration. This paper considers these issues as they have occurred in South Africa. It uses all waves of the National Income Dynamics Study–Coronavirus Rapid Mobile Survey to estimate non-return to school, access to school meals, and household well-being. The number of learners not attending school in 2021 is estimated to be close to quadruple pre-pandemic levels. Combined with estimates of learning lost, we can conclude that the pandemic has worn away at two decades of progress made in basic education. Evidence also indicates that school feeding has been slow to recover to pre-pandemic levels. Deepened levels of household hunger combined with a lack of access to free school meals is indicated to contribute to significantly greater levels of caregiver anxiety and psychological distress.
Experiences of increased food insecurity, economic, and psychological distress during the COVID-19 pandemic among SNAP-enrolled food pantry clients

AUTHOR(S)
Robin T. Higashi; Anubha Sood; Ana Belen Conrado (et al.)

Published: December 2021   Journal: Public Health Nutrition

The COVID-19 pandemic initially doubled the rates of food insecurity across the USA and tripled rates among households with children. Despite the association among food insecurity, chronic disease and psychological distress, narratives depicting the experiences of already food insecure populations are notably underrepresented in the literature. The current study assessed the impact of COVID-19 on clients of a food pantry who were also enrolled in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). This is a qualitative study probing the effects of the pandemic on daily living, food needs, food buying and food insecurity. Interview transcripts were analysed using a combined deductive and inductive approach. Interviews were conducted via telephone between May and June of 2020 among equal numbers of English- and Spanish-speaking clients (n 40 total).

Pre-pandemic to early-pandemic changes in risk of household food insecurity among Maryland families with children

AUTHOR(S)
Alysse J. Kowalski; Ann Pulling Kuhn; Hannah G. Lane (et al.)

Published: December 2021   Journal: Public Health Nutrition

The objective of this study was to examine risk and protective factors associated with pre- to early-pandemic changes in risk of household food insecurity (FI). Families from two statewide studies (2017-2020) in an observational cohort (May-August 2020) were re-enrolled. Caregivers reported on risk of household FI, demographics, pandemic-related hardships, and participation in safety net programs (e.g. CARES stimulus payment, school meals).

Physical activity, food consumption, and breakfast among normal and overweight elementary school children in Bogor during Covid-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Dini Rizkiani Putri; Cesilia Meti Dwiriani; Dodik Briawan

Published: November 2021   Journal: Jurnal Gizi dan Pangan
The objective of this study was to analyze differences in physical activity, quality of food consumption and breakfast between elementary school children with normal and overweight nutritional status in Bogor City of Indonesia during the Covid-19 pandemic. This was a cross sectional study carried out from September 2020 to January 2021 in nine elementary schools in Bogor City. This research was conducted when school from home had been running for about six months. Survey was conducted using a structured questionnaire filled by the subject's parents via google form and Microsoft word and then interviewing via whatsapp. Physical activity measured using the Physical Activity Level (PAL) method and food consumption quality using the Individual Dietary Diversity Score (IDDS). Breakfast quality based on the intake and contribution of energy and protein at breakfast.
Diet quality during the COVID-19 pandemic: Effects of workplace support for families and work-to-family enrichment in dual-earner parents with adolescent children

AUTHOR(S)
Berta Schnettler; Ligia Orellana; Edgardo Miranda-Zapata (et al.)

Published: November 2021   Journal: Appetite
Organizational support goes beyond the work domain, supporting workers' family role and thus generating resources that lead to work-to-family enrichment. Workers may invest these resources in improving their, and their family's, diet quality. However, data on the link between work resources, enrichment and diet quality during the COVID-19 pandemic is still emerging. The present study contributes to this literature by exploring the actor and partner effects between perceived workplace support for families, work-to-family enrichment, and diet quality in different-sex dual-earner parents with adolescent children; the potential mediating role of work-to-family enrichment between perceived workplace support for families and diet quality was also explored. A sample of 430 different-sex dual-earner parents and one of their adolescent children (mean age 13.0 years, 53.7% female) were recruited in Rancagua, Chile, during March and June 2020.
Changes in accessibility to emergency and community food services during COVID-19 and implications for low income populations in Hamilton, Ontario

AUTHOR(S)
Christopher D. Higgins; Antonio Páez; Gyoorie Kim (et al.)

Published: October 2021   Journal: Social Science & Medicine
This paper analyzes the changes in accessibility to emergency and community food services before and during the COVID-19 pandemic in the City of Hamilton, Ontario. Many of these food services are the last line of support for households facing food insecurity; as such, their relevance cannot be ignored in the midst of the economic upheaval caused by the pandemic. This analysis is based on the application of balanced floating catchment areas and concentrates on households with lower incomes (<CAD40,000, approximately the Low Income Cutoff Value for a city of Hamilton's size).
Pandemic-related parental distress: examining associations with family meals and child feeding practices during the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Caroline E. West; Clarissa V. Shields; Kara V. Hultstrand (et al.)

Published: September 2021   Journal: Children's Health Care
The present study examined associations between COVID-19-related negative impact and parental distress and aspects of the home food environment. Parents (N= 189) of children ages 7–17 completed an online survey assessing COVID-19-related impact and distress, household meals, feeding practices, and weight concern. Results suggested an inverse association between impact and distress and structured meals and positive associations with both restrictive feeding practices and weight concern. Food insecurity significantly moderated the association between impact and structured meals and remains a necessary target for intervention. Future research should explore factors that may mitigate the impact of COVID-19-related distress on the home food environment.
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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.