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Social Protection response to COVID-19 in rural areas

FAO, together with partners, is advocating for the expansion of social protection to effectively reach men and women living in rural areas and to promote linkages between social protection and agriculture, food security, nutrition, natural resource management, decent rural employment and resilience building.

FAO is committed to maximize the impact of social protection by building and strengthening nationally-owned social protection systems that are integrated in broader livelihood promotion and rural development strategies. FAO’s key contribution is to build the economic case for the expansion of social protection programmes. The economic case has focused on highlighting the role of social protection not only as a social policy tool, but also as a strategic investment to enhance the economic and productive potential of the poor.

This booth showcases FAO’s work on social protection: a policy brief series on the response to the COVID-19 pandemic from different perspectives (migrant workers, indigenous people, rural youth, rural areas to name a few); tools for implementing gender in social protection programmes and initiatives; papers on social protection and child labour, resilience and climate change; webinars on various topics; an e-learning course on social protection, and last but not least, a position paper on Social protection and resilience that explores supporting livelihoods in protracted crises and in fragile and humanitarian contexts.

Visit www.fao.org/social-protection for more information.

1. Publications: 

FAO Brief | Social Protection and COVID-19 response in rural areas
This brief explains how social protection measures could shield the rural poor from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic while providing a series of social protection measures countries adopted around the world as a response to COVID-19.

FAO Brief | Impact of COVID-19 on informal workers
The COVID-19 pandemic is a major economic and labour market shock, presenting significant impacts in terms of unemployment and underemployment for informal workers. In rural areas, the livelihoods of especially the self-employed and wage workers are at risk, because agri-food supply chains and markets are being disrupted due to lockdowns and restrictions of movement.

FAO Brief | COVID-19 and indigenous peoples
This document provides a series of recommendations to governments on how to face COVID-19 impacts on indigenous peoples.

FAO Brief | Migrant workers and remittances in the context of COVID-19 in sub-Saharan Africa
This document highlights how COVID-19 affects migrant workers disproportionally.
FAO Brief | Rural youth and the COVID-19 pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic is affecting all parts of society and livelihoods around the globe. It is though worth recognizing that disadvantaged segments of populations like rural young women and men will be impacted harder, nevertheless, when proactively engaged, they have demonstrated to be innovators in their own sectors to surmount the pandemic impact.
FAO Brief | Addressing inequality in times of COVID-19
This brief presents a series of general and policy recommendations to help prevent the rise of inequality during and in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic. It urges countries to prioritize the reduction of inequalities and to take a medium- and long-term approach in addressing existing inequalities in order to ensure that eventual economic recovery will reduce the poverty brought on by COVID-19.
FAO Brief 
| Food systems and COVID-19 in Latin America and the Caribbean

FAO Brief | Migrant workers and remittances in the context of COVID-19 in sub-Saharan Africa

Social protection responses to the COVID-19 crisis in the MENA/Arab States region | Country responses and policy considerations Regional UN Issue-Based Coalition on Social Protection (IBC-SP) July 2020
This paper reflects on an ongoing initiative of the Regional UN Issue-Based Coalition on Social Protection (IBC-SP). The IBC-SP gathers regional experts from ILO, UNICEF, ESCWA, FAO, IOM, UNDP, UNHCR, WHO, UNRWA, WFP and the RCO to share knowledge, think and work together on the development of effective and inclusive social protection systems, including floors, in the MENA/Arab States region, as a key pathway for reducing vulnerabilities and building resilience to shocks and stresses, reducing poverty and achieving the SDGs.

FAO COVID-19 Response and Recovery Programme
Economic inclusion and social protection to reduce poverty
Vulnerable groups include rural women, youth and children, indigenous people, the elderly, and people with disabilities. The COVID-19 pandemic has also significantly affected migrants, including refugees and internally displaced people, casual labourers and seasonal migrants, all of whom are exposed to high risk of infection. This brief focuses social protection as a means to better reach women, children, informal workers, migrants, and other underserved groups.
Card: http://www.fao.org/documents/card/en/c/cb0282en
PDF: http://www.fao.org/3/cb0282en/cb0282en.pdf

Social protection: effective and inclusive response and recovery in the context of COVID-19 in Africa
Even before COVID-19 had spread to Africa, the socio-economic impact was felt. The decline in demand and production from the most economically developed countries where the pandemic initially hit the hardest – China, the European Union and the United States of America – has caused a global recession, with direct repercussions in Africa. The economic downturn has led to an overall decline in both on and off-farm income, as well as remittances, leading vulnerable households to experience income reductions from all directions.
Card: http://www.fao.org/documents/card/en/c/ca8988en
PDF: http://www.fao.org/3/ca8988en/ca8988en.pdf

Public employment programmes in the time of COVID-19
PEPs, in fact, have a key role to play not only in the short term, by mitigating the impact of the public health emergency and its economic fallout, but also in the medium and longer term, by helping rural households and economies weather the effects of the looming economic recession and recover in the post-pandemic. Well designed, PEPs can help boost both the public health, social protection and macroeconomic responses to the crisis. This brief aims to shed light on the important role of PEPs as a social protection instrument for reducing poverty and effectively responding to and recovering from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Card: http://www.fao.org/documents/card/en/c/cb0882en
PDF: http://www.fao.org/3/cb0882en/CB0882EN.pdf

FAO’s work on Social Protection
Available in English, French, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese and Russian

FAO Social Protection Framework
Managing climate risks through social protection
FAO Position Paper on Social protection and resiliense: supporting livelihoods in protrated crises and in fragile and humanitarian contexts.

The economic impacts of cash transfer programmes in Sub-Saharan Africa
Social protection and child labour
Eliminating child labour in agriculture with social protection
This information note aims at outlining what are child labour and social protection, how social protection can significantly contribute to eliminating child labour in agriculture, and what are FAO’s planned efforts to leverage on social protection interventions to generate knowledge and increase impact at country level on child labour elimination.

Strengthening Coherence Between Agriculture And Social Protection
Framework for Analysis and Action

To support efforts aimed at combating poverty and hunger, FAO and its partners have developed guidance material for strengthening coherence between agriculture and social protection. Drawing from concrete country experiences, the Framework presents the benefits of bringing together agriculture and social protection and identifies options for doing this at policy and programming levels.

Strengthening Coherence Between Agriculture And Social Protection -Diagnostic Tool
The Diagnostic Tool assists users in identifying existing linkages between agriculture and social protection interventions in a given country and how to strengthen them. The Tool can also help understand people’s experiences and perceptions of the linkages between the two sectors and how these linkages (or lack of them) affect their livelihoods.

FAO Toolkit on gender-sensitive social protection programmes to combat rural poverty
Available in English, French and Spanish

Technical Guide No. 1 | Introduction to gender-sensitive SP programming to combat rural poverty: Why is it important and what does it mean?
Technical Guide No. 2 | A guide to integrating gender into the design of cash transfer and public work programmes
Technical Guide No. 3 | Integrating gender into implementation and monitoring and evaluation of cash transfer and public works programmes
2. Webinars:

Climate-resilient livelihoods and food security in Latin America and the Caribbean

Wednesday, 9 September 2020 | Webinar on resilient agricultural livelihoods and the role of social protection in climate change and food security. The panel includes social protection experts from FAO, WFP and the World Bank as well as government representatives from Peru, Paraguay and Dominican Republic.

Gendered impacts of COVID-19 and social protection responses in rural areas
Thursday, 27 August 2020 | This webinar presented an overview of the gendered dimensions of the response to COVID-19 in rural areas by highlighting how social protection can be made gender-sensitive in the context of emergencies.

Reaching rural areas in the social protection response to COVID-19: opportunities and challenges (co-organized with ILO and supported by IPC-IG) | 28 July 2020
This webinar, co-organized by FAO and ILO, provided a platform for countries to discuss how social protection can be best leveraged as a tool to mitigate the impacts of COVID-19 for rural communities, as well as challenges and opportunities for building back better in terms of longer-term social protection responses, enhancing coordination between social protection and agriculture.

Strengthening capacity to design and implement risk-informed and shock-responsive social protection systems in ASEAN

UNDRR’s Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific - Webinar series on the COVID-19 disaster 

Medios de vida y seguridad alimentaria resilientes al clima

“Social Protection Pathways to Nutrition: Evidence in Asia and the Pacific” took place on April 23 and was organized by UNICEF and FAO in collaboration with the WFP and EPRI, drawing on the wealth of evidence gathered for the 2019 Asia and the Pacific Regional Overview of Food Security and Nutrition — aka SOFI report (http://www.fao.org/documents/card/en/c/ca7062en/).

Online courses:
- FAO E-learning Academy

-  Social Protection in Rural Areas: building responsive systems in the context of Covid19

- Series on Rural Poverty Reduction

- Introduction to Social Protection

Feel free to reach out to our team at  Alejandro.grinspun@fao.org 
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