COVID-19 Resilience Fund: Support young women and girls in Africa to build resilience amid the COVID-19 pandemic

by Batonga Foundation

On April 2nd 2020, the first case of COVID-19 was reported in Benin. Batonga acted swiftly to help the communities we support better face this pandemic. Thanks to the funds raised through our COVID-19 Emergency Fundraiser launched in April 2020, we were able to:

  • Broadcast over 30 (and counting) weekly radio lessons to safely disseminate critical information during the pandemic
  • Nurture and maintain income generating economic activities for over 1,100 young women.
  • Produce and distribute over 5,000 bars of soap and 3,000 face masks to the communities our programs support.
  • Install 30 handwashing stations across 15 rural communities in Benin
  • Supply communities with over 3,000 face masks.

This emergency fund helped to prepare the communities Batonga supports for COVID-19 and prevent the spread of the virus. However, on this upcoming one year anniversary of the COVID-19 pandemic hitting Benin, there is still so much more work to be done to help build resilience in these communities. It is essential that we address the profound psychological, social, and emotional impacts this pandemic has taken on the lives of the young women and girls in Benin. 

COVID-19 has resulted in heightened economic insecurity for women and girls around the world. Reports show that the pandemic will push 96 million people into extreme poverty by 2021, 47 million of whom are women and girls. In addition, COVID-19’s lockdowns, school closings, and joblessness have resulted in a parallel pandemic of violence against women and girls. Reports of GBV have increased by 40% or more around the world. 

However, together we can work to mitigate the economic, social, and psychological effects of the pandemic on the lives of the young women and girls we support and build resilience in their communities. Donations to Batonga’s COVID-19 resilience fund will go directly towards:

  • Supporting the establishment of and expansion of women-owned businesses in Benin through providing startup funding to all 1,162 young women aged 18 to 30 in our 50 Young Women Business Circles, helping them each attend their very first business networking event, and providing them with professional business training .
  • Strengthening our GBV prevention and response program through funding one weekly radio lesson covering topics on Gender Based Violence response and prevention every single week for the next 6 months and through enabling us to host a community wide training session for all 15 communities we support on best practices to support GBV survivors.

By donating to Batonga today, you can help build economic resilience and activity for young women and girls in Benin in a way that elevates their rights, dignity, and solidarity. Every dollar counts!

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