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Accepted Paper:

Gender, Protection and Safeguarding in Covid-19 Pandemic. Experiences from Malawian humanitarian workers  
Anthony Jeckson Malunga (Institute of Gender Development in Malawi)

Paper short abstract:

Aid workers and humanitarian workers have a task to respond in emergencies like Covid19. We draw experiences from Malawi on how humanitarians are responding to the Covid-19 while protecting the rights or women, children and other vulnerable.

Paper long abstract:

Malawi is one of the disaster- prone countries in the SADC region and it has been hit by the Covid-19 pandemic. Over the past decades, Malawi has experienced droughts, acute food shortage, floods, cyclone emergencies and currently, the Covid-19 pandemic which has affected livelihoods. During such disaster and emergency situations, it is mostly the marginalized groups; women and girls, people with disabilities children and the elderly who are mostly affected. The emergency situations increase their risk of abuse, neglect and rights violations, as protective structures collapse and family ties are weakened. This has been the case for this Covid-19 pandemic Gender sensitivity protection and safeguarding efforts by humanitarian organizations, experts, workers and volunteers are among the minimum standards that are established as principles for humanitarian aid. Aid workers or humanitarian workers, are called to actively prevent and protect marginalized groups, women and girls, from being abused and ensure that they are able to access gender sensitive services, secure shelters or safe spaces, and to reduce adverse impacts of the disasters. This paper is organized around three components: First, how are Malawian humanitarians or aid workers, are guided by the international and regional human rights systems, to address the gender and protection concerns during Covid 19. Second, an analysis of challenges that humanitarian workers face in ensuring the protection of women’s rights in this period. Third, to what extent can the aid workers genuinely embrace gender responsive approaches as an organizing principle of humanitarian work in the pandemic.

Panel P51b
The impact of Covid-19 on the displacement crisis resulting from natural disasters II
  Session 1 Friday 2 July, 2021, -