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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

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

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Young children's traumatic stress reactions to the COVID-19 pandemic: the long reach of mothers' adverse childhood experiences

Melissa J. Hagan; Danielle R. Roubinov; Alana Cordeiro (et al.)

Published: September 2022   Journal: Journal of Affective Disorders

The COVID-19 pandemic has negatively impacted parental and child mental health; however, it is critical to examine this impact in the context of parental histories of adversity. this study hypothesized that maternal adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) and pandemic-related negative life events would predict child traumatic stress symptoms (TSS) and tested potential mediating pathways through maternal pandemic-related TSS and/or poorer maternal sensitivity during the pandemic. Data were collected from a longitudinal sample of low-income, racially/ethnically diverse mothers and their children. Between May and November 2020, mothers (n = 111) of young children (M age = 7.42 years, SD = 0.45) completed questionnaires to assess their own and their child's pandemic-related TSS, exposure to pandemic-related negative events, and parent-child relationship quality. Maternal ACEs, maternal depression, parent-child relationship quality, and child internalizing symptoms had been assessed approximately 1–3 years prior.

Latina mothers navigating COVID-19: within- and between-family stress processes over time

Chase J. Boyer; Elisa Ugarte; Andrea C. Buhler-Wassmann (et al.)

Published: August 2022   Journal: Family Relations

This study aimed to understand how periodic shifts in financial cutbacks and fears of contracting COVID-19 contributed to children's externalizing behaviors due to increases in maternal stress among low-income Latina mothers during the first 10 months of the COVID-19 pandemic. The COVID-19 pandemic caused widespread health, economic, and psychological consequences for families and children. The Latino community is particularly vulnerable to the economic and health risks of this pandemic as a consequence of systemic oppression. The family stress model suggests that these family stressors will have psychological repercussions to parents, and downstream behavioral consequences to children.

Adding fuel to the fire? Examining exposure to potentially stressful or traumatic events before and during the COVID-19 pandemic in low-income, Black families

Austen B. McGuire; Yo Jackson; Jennifer McDonald

Published: August 2022   Journal: Psychological Trauma
The COVID-19 pandemic has upended the lives of many individuals. While emerging evidence has begun to document health (e.g., infection) and financial (e.g., job loss) consequences, less is known about the day-to-day experiences of some of the country’s most vulnerable populations. The current study sought to address this gap in understanding by examining exposure to potentially stressful or traumatic experiences (PSTEs) and their relation to mental health among predominately low-income, African American/Black individuals.
Minority and low-SES families' experiences during the early phases of the COVID-19 pandemic crisis: a qualitative study

Judith L. Perrigo; Anya Samek; Michael Hurlburt

Published: August 2022   Journal: Children and Youth Services Review

This paper aimed to explore minority and low-SES families’ general experiences with the stay-at-home mandate initiated by the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. Semi-structured qualitative interviews (n = 31) were conducted in May 2020 – six to nine weeks after the stay-at-home mandate was initiated in Chicago Heights, Illinois. Participants were randomly selected from the parent Chicago Heights Early Childhood Center (CHECC) study (N = 2,185). Thematic content analysis of transcribed semi-structured interviews were employed.

Family satisfaction and self-efficacy among low-income adolescents during the COVID-19 pandemic: a comparative analysis of parents' educational attainment

Jaewon Lee; Jennifer Allen; Hyejung Lim (et al.)

Published: July 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Psychiatry

Given that the period from middle to high school is important to develop and cultivate self-efficacy, reduced support in low-income families might negatively influence the development of self-efficacy among low-income students since COVID-19. This study aims to investigate the association between family satisfaction and self-efficacy among low-income students since COVID-19 and the moderating effect of parents' educational attainment on the relationship. 255 low-income students in South-Korea were selected for the final sample. The PROCESS macro 3.4 for Statistical Product and Service Solutions was used to analyze the data.

Socio-economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on new mothers and associations with psychosocial wellbeing: Findings from the UK COVID-19 New Mum online observational study (May 2020-June 2021)

Emeline Rougeaux; Sarah Dib; Adriana Vázquez-Vázquez (et al.)

Published: July 2022   Journal: PLOS Global Public Health
Studies have reported unequal socio-economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and associated restrictions in the UK, despite support packages. It is unclear how women with young children, a vulnerable group economically and psychosocially, havebeen impacted by income and employment pandemic changes, and how this is associated with psychosocial wellbeing. Using the UK COVID-19 New Mum online survey of women with children <12 months (28th May 2020-26th June 2021; N = 3430), which asked about pandemic impact on their i.ability to pay for rent, food, and essentials expenses separately, ii. employment (and/or partner’s), and iii.past week mood, feelings and activities, we explored associations of i. & maternal age, household structure and income, i. & ii., and i. & iii. using logistic (odd ratios), multivariate (relative risk ratios/RRR), and linear (coefficients) regression respectively, and associated p-values.
Effects of socioeconomic status, parental stress, and family support on children's physical and emotional health during the COVID-19 pandemic

Sara Scrimin; Libera Ylenia Mastromatteo; Ani Hovnanyan (et al.)

Published: July 2022   Journal: Journal of Child and Family Studies
The current study conducts an exploratory study on children’s emotional and physical health in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The direct and interactive effects of parental stress, family socioeconomic status (SES), and family support on child adjustment were investigated. A total of 116 children of varied socioeconomic and their parents were interviewed. Parents with low household income perceived greater distress related to uncertainty and health worries compared to those with higher household income. However, it was among high-SES families that parental distress was associated with child difficulties. At a multivariate level, children’s health was associated with SES, family support, and parental COVID-19 stress. Among families with low household income, when parents perceived low/average COVID-19 stress, family support worked as a protective factor for children’s adjustment. Understanding how COVID-19 relates with children’s emotional and physical health within families with low and high household income may help to inform recommendations for best practices, for example through family support interventions.
Parenting in the pandemic: exploring the experiences of families with children on Universal Credit before and during the COVID-19 pandemic

Marsha Wood; Fran Bennett

Published: June 2022   Journal: Families, Relationships and Societies
The expansion of the UK’s support for families with children from the late 1990s was put into reverse over the decade from 2010. Even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, therefore, parents may have felt that they had less support from the government and increased private responsibility in bringing up the next generation. Drawing on qualitative interviews with parents in England and Scotland claiming Universal Credit, this article analyses parenting experiences for low-income families during the COVID-19 pandemic, in particular concerning the costs of looking after children, caring for children, and family relationships/mental health.
Perspectives of socioeconomically disadvantaged parents on their children's coping during COVID‐19: implications for practice

Ami N. Seivwright; Zoe Callis; Paul R. Flatau

Published: June 2022   Journal: Children & Society
Disruptions caused by COVID-19 have the potential to create long-term negative impacts on children's well-being and development, especially among socioeconomically disadvantaged children. However, we know little about how socioeconomically disadvantaged families are coping with the pandemic, nor the types of support needed. This study presents qualitative analysis of responses to an open-ended question asking parents how children are coping with the restrictions associated with COVID-19, to identify areas in which these cohorts can be supported. Four main themes were identified: health concerns, schooling difficulties, social isolation and adjustment to restrictions. Health concerns included exacerbation of pre-existing health conditions, fear about the virus, difficulty getting children to understand the pandemic and increased sedentary behaviour. Schooling difficulties referred to the challenges of home schooling, which were behavioural (e.g. difficulty concentrating) and logistical (e.g. technology). Social isolation, expressed as missing friends, family and/or institutions was common. Finally, parents expressed that children experienced both positive adjustments to restrictions, such as spending more time with family, and negative adjustments such as increased screen time.
Healthfulness of online grocery shopping behaviors: analyzing receipt data from low-income households with children
Published: June 2022   Journal: Current Developments in Nutrition

Online grocery services hold potential to reduce physical barriers to equitable healthy food procurement, particularly among low-income families who often live far from groceries stores. During COVID-19, the USDA authorized the use of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits online in some retailers across the US. We aimed to evaluate the nutritional quality of online grocery purchases among SNAP-eligible families. Itemized receipt data was analyzed from a larger mixed methods study of online grocery shopping behaviors of SNAP-eligible families in Maryland. Of the 310 participants who completed the survey, 39 submitted grocery receipts. Of those, 19 participants submitted receipts with complete data for nutritional analysis on total amount spent, number of items purchased and units, weight (oz), and % of expenditure on fruits, vegetables, and sugar sweetened beverages (SSB). Nutritional analysis compared purchases of propensity score matched samples of SNAP (n = 14) versus SNAP-eligible non-participant families (n = 5) using a zero-inflated Poisson regression, controlling for sociodemographic factors.

Shifts in self-reported physical activity, sedentary behavior, and play among lower-socioeconomic children during the COVID-19 pandemic: a repeated cross-sectional study

Kylie Wilson; Annette Schmidt; Aaron Hess (et al.)

Published: May 2022   Journal: American Journal of Health Promotion

The lack of in-person schooling and participation in structured recreation activities during the COVID-19 pandemic may have altered children’s movement behaviors. This study assessed changes in children’s self-reported in school and out of school physical activity, sedentary behavior, and play before and during the pandemic. A repeated cross-sectional online survey was administered in February 2020 (pre-pandemic, in-person) and 2021 (during pandemic, remote). Children attended an urban public school district in Phoenix (AZ) serving a low-income population. Students in grades 4–8 completed the survey in 2020 (n = 253, 62% response rate) and 2021 (n = 261, 77% response rate). The survey included items from the Youth Activity Profile and three additional questions about play.

Depressive risk among Italian socioeconomically disadvantaged children and adolescents during COVID-19 pandemic: a cross-sectional online survey.

Maria Serra; Anna Presicci; Luigi Quaranta (et al.)

Published: May 2022   Journal: Italian Journal of Pediatrics
Children and adolescents and low-income individuals are considered particularly vulnerable for mental health implications during the current COVID-19 pandemic. Depression is a frequent negative emotional response during an epidemic outbreak and is also prone importantly to environmental risk like stressors derived from income inequality. This study aimed to assess depressive symptomatology in a sample of Italian low-income minors during the COVID-19 outbreak. It hypothesized that the stronger were the negative effects of the pandemic on socioeconomic conditions, the higher would have been the risk for showing depressive symptoms.
Impact of lockdown due to COVID-19 on nutrition and food security of the selected low-income households in Bangladesh

Kazi Muhammad Rezaul Karim; Tasmia Tasnimb

Published: May 2022   Journal: Heliyon
This study aims to explore the impact of COVID-19 pandemic lockdown on household food security and the nutritional status of the children and identify the risk factors associated with it. A cross-sectional study was conducted in 220 households having at least one under 5 children of Narayanganj district in Bangladesh. Household food insecurity, coping strategies and nutritional status of children were the main outcome variables. Multivariate logistic regression analysis was performed to investigate the significant determinants
School meal access and changes in meal participation during COVID-19 school closures: a stratified random sample of CalFresh healthy living eligible school districts in California

Kaela Plank; Sridharshi Hewawitharana; Evan Talmage (et al.)

Published: April 2022   Journal: Preventive Medicine Reports
The National School Lunch and School Breakfast programs are a nutrition safety net for millions of children in the United States, particularly children in households with lower incomes. During Spring 2020 COVID-19 school closures, schools served school meals through the Summer Meal Programs. Despite efforts to increase access, meal participation declined, and food insecurity increased. This study aimed to (1) describe meal program features as communicated in low-income California school districts’ on-line resources (2) examine associations between meal program features and change in meal participation between May 2019 and May 2020 and (3) evaluate equity by describing meal site coverage and placement relative to the size of priority populations.
Evaluation of postpartum depression and maternal attachment scale in a low socioeconomic level region: how was it affected during the Covid-19 pandemic period?

Ramazan Denizli; Nihat Farisoğulları; Bedri Sakcak (et al.)

Published: April 2022   Journal: Medical Science and Discovery

This study aimed to investigate the frequency of Postpartum Depression (PPD) and maternal attachment status in a region with a low socioeconomic level during the Covid-19 pandemic.Two hundred women who gave birth in our hospital were evaluated on postpartum 10th day with Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) and Maternal Attachment Inventory (MBI).

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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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