Surviving COVID-19: A Women-Led Response


Research by ActionAid shows a global increase in violence against women during the COVID-19 pandemic as women’s shelters are shut down and countries divert funding to battle the pandemic.

Key findings from the report show that:

  • In Bangladesh, ActionAid’s network of support services, including in the Rohingya refugee camps, found a tenfold (983%) increase in sexual and domestic violence this April to May, compared to the same period last year.
  • In Uganda, ActionAid was forced to temporarily shut down 10 of its shelters due to lockdown restrictions, even though caseloads doubled in March and April 2020 during the outbreak, compared to the previous year.
  • In the Gaza strip, an ActionAid partner organisation reports supporting 700% more survivors of GBV through its counselling services this April-May, than in 2019.
  • In Italy, a review of more than 228 shelters saw the number of women who asked for support through the government’s anti-violence hotline increase by 59%.
  • In Brazil, 143 women were killed across 12 states in March and April this year with a 22% increase in femicide compared to last year, according to data from security agencies. In the Northern State, Acre, femicide is up 300%.
  • In Nigeria, where the government has declared a state of emergency following a sharp spike in cases of femicide and rape, one women’s shelter reported a 700% increase in cases of violence since lockdown.


Download the report.

Report: Surviving COVID-19: A Women-Led Response

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