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Women who don’t stay home, don’t wash their hands and don’t even cover their mouths: COVID-19 and community philanthropy in Latin America

A separate chapter of the global battle against COVID-19 is being played out in Latin America, which is testing national and regional capacities to meet a challenge that goes far beyond a health crisis. The different responses of public administrations call into question regional coordination capacities, and also expose the fragility of institutions, infrastructure, the social model of development and the capacities of different actors to collaborate across sectors for the public good.

Against this backdrop, over spring 2020, ELLAS spoke with a number of women community leaders from across Latin America, to learn more about the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their communities and on their own personal lives. Their reflections, laid out in this report, focus on:

  • Questioning the idea of “new normality”, based on criticism of “old normality”: less confidence, doubts about reciprocity, greater solidarity;
  • The weakening of participatory democracy in the region;
  • The economic consequences of the pandemic on people’s quality of life, particularly in terms of employment and work and own resources;
  • The awareness of the impact of digital divide in inequality;
  • The low participation of civil society as a major player in public policies in the face of the impact of COVID-19;
  • Solidarity, as a temporary and reactive phenomenon;
  • The importance of womens’ roles.

Authors: Florencia Roitstein & Andrés Thompson

Published: October 2020

Published by: ELLAS – Mujeres y Filantropía

Download: ‘Women who don’t stay home, don’t wash their hands and don’t even cover their mouths: COVID-19 and community philanthropy in Latin America‘, also available in Spanish ‘Mujeres que no se quedan en casa, no se lavan las manos, ni se tapan la bocas: COVID-19 y filantropía comunitaria en América Latina.’

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