CARE Rapid Gender Analysis for COVID 19 East, Central and Southern Africa

Authored by: Everjoy Mahuku, Kalkidan Lakew Yihun,Karl Deering, et al

Categories: Global Public Health
Sub-Categories: COVID-19, Economic Participation, Human Development, Migration, Sexual and Gender-Based Violence (SGBV)
Region: Sub-Saharan Africa
Year: 2020
Citation: Mahuku, Everjoy, et al. “CARE Rapid Gender Analysis for COVID 19 East, Central and Southern Africa.” CARE International, April 2020.

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Executive Summary

The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has had a devastating impact globally. Governments across East, Central and Southern Africa (ECSA) are imposing lockdowns and other restrictions, which although critical in slowing the spread of the disease, can themselves impose significant social and economic costs on millions of people, especially those living in informal settlements or overcrowded refugee and internally displaced person (IDP) camps. Most countries in ECSA have little to no prior experience in responding to such a pandemic.

The impacts – direct and indirect – of public health emergencies fall disproportionally on the most vulnerable and marginalized groups in society. Interconnected social, economic, and political factors pose complex challenges for the ECSA region’s ability to respond to COVID-19. The region already faces significant health challenges that would exacerbate the severity of COVID-19, such as high levels of malnutrition, malaria, anemia, HIV/AIDS, and tuberculosis. Access to healthcare in the region is the lowest in the world, thus there is limited capacity to absorb the pandemic.

This preliminary Rapid Gender Analysis (RGA) has the following objectives:

  1. To analyze and understand the different impacts that COVID-19 potentially has on women, men, girls and boys and other vulnerable groups in East, Central and Southern Africa (ECSA) context.
  2. To inform humanitarian and development programming in the ECSA region based on the different needs of women, men, boys and girls with a particular focus on gender-based violence (GBV), health, water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), food and nutrition security and women’s economic empowerment.