UNDEF strengthens Covid-19 response and recovery by enhancing the voice of civil society

The UN Democracy Fund is working closely with its civil society project organizations to address and counteract the wide range of ways the Covid-19 crisis may impair democracy and increase authoritarianism.

Our civil society partners have swiftly answered our call to action and are pivoting their work to address a range of acute Covid-19 issues and needs:  

  • developing media literacy and digital safety, more critical than ever as activism is forced online, so as to address the risk of suppression, interference and closing of civic space;
  • fighting misinformation, disinformation and hate speech, which have mushroomed in the crisis;
  • training journalists remotely to report on the impact of the pandemic with in-depth, fact-checked coverage, while staying safe on the front line;
  • empowering women against gender-based violence, which has surged amid Covid-19 lockdowns, quarantines, and social and economic pressures;
  • helping to highlight the challenges of inequality and weak service delivery made worse by the crisis, with specific focus on the needs and rights of women, youth, minorities and other marginalized populations, so as to help hold governments to account.

This also means making the best use of UNDEF’s more than 800 civil society project organizations as a dissemination network for UN messaging on the crisis, and as a feedback mechanism for Covid-19 actions on the ground.

As always, we are generating, developing, and designing civil society proposals for projects to foster good governance, democratic processes and human rights amid the crisis.