Corona Virus And Civil Societies

The impact and spread of COVID-19 is unimaginable and one even can’t describe it in words. This public health emergency will likely result in a global economic crisis – which will hit the poorest and marginalized communities the most .These twin crises expose the widening inequality around the world and threaten to exacerbate the gap between rich and poor, sending us back decades in our progress we have achieved yet.

To be precise, in short term, the widespread closure of schools – now affecting minimum 90% of world’s children population – cuts children off from the vital services and protection that schools provide. It’s another impact on children from the poorest families will be most likely to have their health, nutrition and wellbeing impacted, their learning stopped, and their safety at risk because their school has closed. For many, especially first-generation learners, homeschooling may not be an option. For poor families, especially girls in them, school closures mean that they may never step foot in a classroom again – increased risks of domestic violence, sexual abuse, child marriage.

In the long term, Oxfam {international confederation of 20 charitable organization working on alleviation of global poverty} estimates that half a billion more people may be pushed into poverty as economies lose jobs, small businesses shut down and safety nets are lost in the wake of the pandemic. The lack of food, increased homelessness, and heightened insecurity will permanently let bright futures of millions of children suffer around the world. And the economic shock is likely to reduce education spending further, putting pressure on households to meet the growing financing gaps. Compounding these hardships, growing public fear, misinformation, spreading rumors may further lead to fuel discrimination, stigma, violence, injustice among society.

But, an excellent saying, reads,

“Helping one person might not change the whole world but it could change the world for that person”

The pressure to mitigate these impacts relies heavily on the ability of government to maintain its role and give voice to communities most likely to be left behind in the public emergency response. Yet the crisis will also hamper civil society’s ability to respond. Closing civic space, constraints in movement in many countries make the environment for advocacy and accountability an extremely difficult one to work in. The pandemic may result in a civil society collapse in many countries.

While this may be one of the most difficult environments for civil society, it is also a critical moment where its work has never been more important. There is an immediate role for civil society in monitoring the impact of school closures on the poorest, especially girls, and to advocate for effective responses to the pandemic.

Governments looking forward for new plans and need to know how decisions made are impacting citizens. Civil society can facilitate engagement with affected communities, a critical part of ensuring contextually relevant responses.

As COVID 19 puts even more pressure on the universality and quality of education systems – and on the capacity of governments to track and respond to those impacts – civil society can play an important role in ensuring that crisis response is targeted to the most vulnerable and sustained through the recovery phase.

To play this role, however, it is vital that civil society be supported to advocate for measures to protect and prioritize the most vulnerable – including using their influence to inform government priorities in the emergency and recovery phases of the pandemic response. Budget monitoring, grassroots social mobilization, and tracking the quality and reach of service delivery will all be important elements of civic engagement to rebuild education during and after the crisis

The future of country its economy, literacy rate, job security, unemployment, poverty all are dependent on how efficiently these society works. And, moreover depends on account of citizens how we control ourselves, how we behave ourselves, how we make our contribution worthy for future of ourselves? We can make this win happen “TOGETHER BY STAYING APART”

                    “WE CAN, WE SHALL OVERCOME”   

Categories: News Analysis