Series on Preventing Violence against Women During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Guidance Note 5 provides programmatic suggestions for adjusting your SASA! program to better align with, and address, emerging realities during the pandemic. Note: we use “SASA!” to represent all SASA! / SASA! Faith / SASA! Together programming.
COVID-19 Challenges for Community Mobilization
SASA! programming (www.raisingvoices.org) uses a community mobilization approach to prevent violence against women (VAW), reaching a critical mass of community members through sustained, person-to-person and community-level activism. In response to COVID-19, governments are issuing a range of emergency directives that may limit (or completely ban) community organizing —such as social distancing, limits on the number of people who can gather, and more restrictive steps such as curfews and stay-at-home/lockdown orders. While such restrictions are necessary to control the spread of the virus, they are likely to disrupt your SASA! program at a critical time when women are at increased risk of experiencing violence. Further, staff may not be available for coordination and support, and community members, activists and leaders are likely to be diverted by additional responsibilities and stress, limiting the time and emotional space available to engage with SASA!
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