About the COVID-19 Response and Recovery Trust Fund - #RecoverBetterTogether

The pandemic moved fast. The response must be faster. The United Nations Secretary-General’s COVID-19 Response and Recovery Trust Fund brings the power, speed and reach of the United Nations to countries and people in need. 

We are facing a global development emergency both in scale and scope unlike any other in recent history. The pandemic threatens to roll back progress towards the Sustainable Development Goals, putting the 'world we want' further out of reach. Inequality and poverty are on the rise, and countries of all income levels are scrambling to protect vulnerable people from the health, social and economic shocks the pandemic has caused.

Now "more than ever" is the time to invest in multilateralism. If we stand together, we will rise together. We will recover better together.

We simply cannot return to where we were before COVID-19 struck, with societies unnecessarily vulnerable to crisis. We need to build a better world.

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres (2 April 2020)

How we Fund

The fund invests across the three windows.

health icon showing snake WINDOW 1: Enable Governments and Communities to suppress the transmission of the virus
  • Support countries to fully implement their National Plans for Combating COVID-19, helping them to close critical gaps, for example, pertaining to limiting transmission, the acquisition of essential equipment and supplies, scaling up country preparedness and response operations, and the payment of salaries and incentives to their healthcare and social workforce; and
  • Assist non-health ministries and government agencies (such as the ministries of education, agriculture, women’s empowerment, transport, interior, labour, social welfare, and public services), along with local governments, to maintain situation rooms and to provide critical services interrupted by COVID-19.
health icon showing snake WINDOW 2: Mitigate the Socioeconomic Impact and safeguard people and their livelihoods
  • Enhance social protection mechanisms through immediate impact measures; scale-up cash transfers, insurance, food security, asset creation, and safety nets; and relieve the disproportionate burden of COVID-19 on women and children;
  • Meet children’s food and educational needs through school meal programmes and access to learning;
  • Promote digital innovations that boost employment, support livelihoods, and improve the provision of social services in line with COVID-19 response measures.
icon indicating connection WINDOW 3: Recover Better
  • Strengthen and test national preparedness measures, inclusive of: integrated disease surveillance and response and community-based surveillance; maintenance of key services and a health-care workforce during crises; laboratory capacity; public procurement protocols and logistics; clear and targeted communications; cross-border collaboration; and national plans that include dedicated budget lines for funding preparedness;
  • Invest in effective and innovative delivery of public services to achieve sustainable and inclusive economies that leave no-one behind and safeguard country SDG programmes from COVID-19-related setbacks.

Solution Catalogue1.0

By leveraging the Covid-19 Socio-Economic Response Plans for agreed priorities and intervention areas and operating with a two stage approach of concept notes and full proposals, this call sought to keep the transaction costs as low as possible.

For investing in any of the solutions in the catalogue please email the fund secretariat.

The interactive map below allows you to interact with the solutions catalogue through the various filters such as

  • Gender Equality Marker score for each of the proposals (3: for projects that have gender equality as a principal objective; 2: for projects that have gender equality as a significant objective; 1 for projects that will contribute in some way to gender equality, but not significantly; 0 for projects that are not expected to contribute noticeably to gender equality.
  • 5 Socio-Economic Framework pillars
  • By different sectors



The Fund is meant to help countries cope with and recover from the social and economic impacts of the pandemic. Within weeks of its launch, and with generous support from 15 contributors, the Fund made its first investments and disbursed funds to 47 countries. The Fund was designed to move fast, while responding to countries’ most critical needs. In doing so, it learned how to be even more nimble and effective in the pandemic context. The Fund has since programmed US$64 million to 75 programmes spanning 61 countries. This report provides an interim update on what these investments have achieved and the people they have helped.

Past Events

The “Recover Better Together” Action Forum on 26 June 2020 helped catalyze the partnerships and finance the Fund needs to make lasting change. The Fund has helped expand the reach of social safety nets and close the digital divide; and it has built infrastructure, including for water and sanitation, to support both immediate response and longer-term resiliency in countries around the world.

Impact Stories


Videos from recipient countries



Pictures from recipient countries