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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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Populations at Risk: Implications of COVID-19 for Hunger, Migration and Displacement

The joint WFP-IOM report highlights the close interconnection between hunger, conflict, migration and displacement, which has been further aggravated by COVID-19. The study explores the impact of the pandemic on the livelihoods, food security and protection of migrant workers households dependent on remittances and the forcibly displaced, including unaccompanied and separated children. Using the latest available data, the report highlights food security trends in some of the major migration and hunger hotspots across the world. The key findings have informed joint recommendations put forward by both agencies to mitigate the immediate negative effects on mobile and displaced populations, while preparing the pathway to recovery.

Socioeconomic impacts of COVID-19 in four African countries

AUTHOR(S)
Anna Josephson; Talip Kilic; Jeffrey D. Michler

Institution: The World Bank
Published: November 2020
This paper provides some of the first evidence on the socioeconomic impacts of and responses to the pandemic among households in Sub-Saharan Africa. Econometric methods are applied to longitudinal household survey data from Ethiopia, Malawi, Nigeria, and Uganda. Results show that 256 million individuals are estimated to live in households that have lost income due to the pandemic. Attempts to cope with this loss are exacerbated by the inability to access medicine and staple foods among 20 to 25 percent of the households in each country, and food insecurity is disproportionately borne by households that were already impoverished prior to the pandemic. Finally, student-teacher contact has dropped from a pre-COVID-19 rate of 96 percent to just 17 percent among households with school-age children. These findings can help inform decisions by governments and international organizations on measures to mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and reveal the need for continued monitoring.
Emergency food security monitoring system: measuring the impact of Covid-19 on food security and vulnerability in Sierra Leone
Institution: World Food Programme
Published: October 2020
The COVID-19 outbreak is posing an unprecedented context that has greatly tested the resolve and resilience of the global population. Whilst Sierra Leone may not have recorded a high COVID-19 caseload, the impact on economic and social activities has evidently been profound, triggering the not too distant memories of the 2014-15 Ebola Virus Disease outbreak. The June 2020 Emergency Food Security Monitoring System again provides critical and timely data to enhance our understanding of the impact of COVID-19 on vulnerability and food security. Concerningly, the E-FSMS again shows an increase in the proportion of food insecure Sierra Leoneans, from 47 percent in January 2020 to 63 percent in June 2020, demonstrating the considerable impact of COVID-19 on households that rely on fragile livelihoods.
Global report on food crises update: in times of COVID-19
This report provides an update of acute hunger, its main drivers and how COVID-19 contributes to their perpetuation or deterioration. Sixteen partner organizations contributed to the report.
The hidden impact of COVID-19 on child poverty

AUTHOR(S)
Lavinia Loperfido; Melissa Burgess; Nicole Dulieu (et al.)

Institution: Save the Children
Published: September 2020

This report is one in a series presenting findings from the Global COVID-19 Research Study. Findings from this report focus on implications for child poverty, drawing on data from our representative sample of 17,565 parents/caregivers and 8,069 children. The research presents differences in the impacts on and needs of children by region, age, gender, disability, minority group, indicators of poverty and more. This research was implemented in 46 countries and resulted in the largest and most comprehensive survey of children and families during the COVID-19 crisis to date, with 31,683 parents and caregivers and 13,477 children aged between 11 and 17 participating in the research.

Emergency food provision for children and families during the COVID‐19 pandemic: examples from five U.S. cities

AUTHOR(S)
Becca B. R. Jablonski; Joy Casnovsky; Jill K. Clark (et al.)

Published: September 2020   Journal: Applied Economic Perspectives and Policy
As lockdown and school closure policies were implemented in response to the coronavirus, the federal government provided funding and relaxed its rules to support emergency food provision, but not guidance on best practices for effectiveness. Accordingly, cities developed a diverse patchwork of emergency feeding programs. This article uses qualitative data to provide insight into emergency food provision developed in five cities to serve children and families. Based on our qualitative analysis, we find that the effectiveness of local approaches appears to depend on: (i) cross‐sector collaboration, (ii) supply chains, and (iii) addressing gaps in service to increased risk populations.
Immediate impact of stay-at-home orders to control COVID-19 transmission on socioeconomic conditions, food insecurity, mental health, and intimate partner violence in Bangladeshi women and their families: an interrupted time series

AUTHOR(S)
Jena Derakhshani Hamadani; Mohammed Imrul Hasan; Andrew J. Baldi

Published: August 2020   Journal: The Lancet Global Health
Stay-at-home orders (lockdowns) have been deployed globally to control COVID-19 transmission, and might impair economic conditions and mental health, and exacerbate risk of food insecurity and intimate partner violence. The effect of lockdowns in low-income and middle-income countries must be understood to ensure safe deployment of these interventions in less affluent settings. This article aims to determine the immediate impact of COVID-19 lockdown orders on women and their families in rural Bangladesh.
Understanding the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on food security in Africa
In addition to its drastic impact to human health globally, the COVID-19 pandemic is having a devastating impact on the economies globally and notably in Africa. Countries on the continent have taken various measures to try and contain the spread of COVID-19 such as lockdowns, curfews, closure of borders and other movement restrictions including quarantines and roadblocks, closure of markets, fear of animals, among others. Early indications suggest that the impact on agriculture and food security and levels of poverty and malnutrition will be significant if urgent actions are not taken. Although the economic impacts of COVID-19 will be more significant than the SARS epidemic, the H1N1 flu epidemic and the Ebola epidemic, COVID-19 impact on economic well-being will be observed through two distinct but similar channels. First are the direct and indirect effects of the sickness and mortality, which will lead to an increase in health care costs and loss of economic activity of infected individuals during their illness. Second, are the behavioral effects resulting from people’s fear of contagion and measures taken by governments to control the spread of the infection. The impacts of essential containment/isolation and distancing measures on social and economic well-being are yet to be realized and could have tremendous effects, notably among the most vulnerable.
Disaster risk reduction in times of COVID-19: What have we learned?

AUTHOR(S)
Wirya Khim

Published: August 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic has more than ever shown the changing risk environment, as well as the systemic and overlaying nature of risks that affect and threaten all sectors. It has reinforced the call for multi-sectoral, multi-hazard and preventive and anticipatory approaches that consistently integrate disaster, climate and crisis risk management for strengthening the resilience of people, their agricultural livelihoods and the ecosystems they depend on in a sustainable manner. In her opinion paper, FAO Natural Resources Officer Wirya Khim discusses the impact of COVID-19 on the agriculture and food systems through a disaster risk reduction lens and offers some key lessons learned that are geared toward evidence-based and risk-informed interventions for inclusive, resilient and sustainable agriculture and food systems.
Overweight and obesity - in the context of COVID-19
Institution: World Food Programme
Published: August 2020
Following the release of the WFP COVID-19 Medium-term programme framework (MTPF), the Nutrition Division has developed a number of guidance tools and documents related to the MTPF pillars of work. The Overweight and obesity in the context of COVID-19 technical note and guidance aims to support WFP's work in the area of promoting healthy and nutritious diets, and preventing all forms of malnutrition. Note that this is part of the forthcoming guidelines on overweight and obesity prevention, highlighting the key role that WFP can play across the various systems – food, health, social protection and education systems.
FAO-WFP early warning analysis of acute food insecurity hotspots

This FAO-WFP early warning analysis of acute food insecurity hotspots report highlights countries which are at risk of significant food security deterioration and in particular acute hunger and associated malnutrition. The analysis takes into account all major drivers of food insecurity, with a particular focus on the secondary impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. It provides a forward-looking perspective, outlining the likely evolution of impacts over the next 6 or so months aiming to inform urgent action to safeguard food security of the most vulnerable communities in these locations. The report is divided into three sections. It firstly includes an overview of the main pathways of secondary impacts of COVID-19 on food security, nutrition, and agriculture. This is followed by regional overviews and a focus on hotspot countries. The last section lists strategic recommendations which should be urgently implemented to avoid a large scale deterioration of acute food insecurity.

The state of food security and nutrition in the world 2020

Updates for many countries have made it possible to estimate hunger in the world with greater accuracy this year. In particular, newly accessible data enabled the revision of the entire series of undernourishment estimates for China back to 2000, resulting in a substantial downward shift of the series of the number of undernourished in the world. Nevertheless, the revision confirms the trend reported in past editions: the number of people affected by hunger globally has been slowly on the rise since 2014. The report also shows that the burden of malnutrition in all its forms continues to be a challenge. There has been some progress for child stunting, low birthweight and exclusive breastfeeding, but at a pace that is still too slow. Childhood overweight is not improving and adult obesity is on the rise in all regions.The report complements the usual assessment of food security and nutrition with projections of what the world may look like in 2030, if trends of the last decade continue. Projections show that the world is not on track to achieve Zero Hunger by 2030 and, despite some progress, most indicators are also not on track to meet global nutrition targets. The food security and nutritional status of the most vulnerable population groups is likely to deteriorate further due to the health and socio economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Enabling agricultural innovation systems to promote appropriate technologies and practices for farmers, rural youth and women during COVID-19
The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic will vary for different groups of rural population, with the highest impact expected to be on farmers and other vulnerable groups, especially women and youth. Targeted support is feasible only by activating a network of actors or organizations within agricultural innovation systems (AIS) and promoting customized technologies and practices suitable for location specific contexts. his brief illustrates the extensive repository of good practices and technologies provided by FAO as part of its online knowledge portals. These practices and technologies can be easily adopted to respond to the needs of the smallholders, rural youth and women affected by lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, improve their food security and create income-generating opportunities. They have been applied and tested on the ground and packaged for the benefit of various AIS actors.
The impact of COVID-19 on food security and nutrition
Institution: United Nations
Published: June 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic is a health and human crisis threatening the food security and nutrition of millions of people around the world, and children among them. Hundreds of millions of people were already suffering from hunger and malnutrition before the virus hit and, unless immediate action is taken, we could see a global food emergency. In the longer term, the combined effects of COVID-19 itself, as well as corresponding mitigation measures and the emerging global recession could, without large-scale coordinated action, disrupt the functioning of food systems. Such disruption can result in consequences for health and nutrition of a severity and scale unseen for more than half a century.
Food system policy priorities and programmatic actions for healthy diets in the context of COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has created supply and demand shocks in the food systems, disproportionately affecting the poor and nutritionally vulnerable groups. A possible economic slowdown further compounds challenges faced by governments in tackling malnutrition in all its forms.This brief presents policy and programmatic actions adopted by countries and development partners to ensure that food and agriculture responses promote healthy diets and improve nutrition. Furthermore, this brief explains supply and demand measures, taken from recent worldwide good practices.

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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.