Date of Meeting: March 27, 2020, March 30, 2020, March 31, 2020, April 1, 2020 

Meeting Organizer: United Nations Global Communication and Secretary General Office

ISJC Staff Present: Major Victoria Edmonds

Reporter: Major Victoria Edmonds

Which SDG does this topic cover? SDG #1,3,6,9,10,11,12,17

Type of meeting: Briefing Meetings on COVID-19

Brief summary of presentation of information made

Briefing details for the past four days from the United Nations:

The UN reported that this global health crisis is unlike any in the 75-year history of the United Nations in that it is spreading human suffering, infecting the global economy, and upending people’s lives.

Children are also paying a heavy price. More than 800 million children are out of school right now, many of whom rely on school to provide their only meal.

As of now, about 364 million school children worldwide are missing out on school meals. This includes 11 million children, in 48 countries, who are no longer receiving WFP school meals - in many cases, that is the only nutritious meal they receive during the day.

The private sector is essential to seeking and creating investment opportunities and protecting jobs.

The temptation of resorting to protectionism must stop. This is the time to dismantle trade barriers and re-establish supply chains.

We must address the effects of this crisis on women. The world’s women are disproportionally carrying the burden at home and in the wider economy.

We must respond decisively, innovatively, and together to suppress the spread of the virus and address the socio-economic devastation that COVID-19 is causing in all regions.

Mr. Guterres called for “an immediate coordinated health response to suppress transmission and end the pandemic” that “scales up health capacity for testing, tracing, quarantine and treatment, while keeping first responders safe, combined with measures to restrict movement and contact.” He underscored that developed countries must assist those less developed, or potentially “face the nightmare of the disease spreading like wildfire in the global South with millions of deaths and the prospect of the disease re-emerging where it was previously suppressed”.

Our common enemy is a virus, but our enemy is also a growing surge of misinformation. So, to overcome this virus, we need to urgently promote facts and science. We also need to promote hope and solidarity over despair and division.

The Global South will start to feel the effects of COVID-19 and it will move rapidly like a speeding train. They won’t have the resources like develop countries to deal with what will be ahead of them.

See website below for cases in countries this is updated each day.

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Situation Dashboard 

With coronavirus transmission on the rise in most Latin American countries, there is a small window of opportunity for Governments to slow the spread of the virus, reduce the impact on health systems and save lives.

As the coronavirus (COVID-19) has swept through Asia, Europe and North America, medical experts are warning that it is just a matter of time before Africa would see an exponential increase in cases. The United Nations is rushing to protect Africa from the COVID-19 onslaught that would lead to massive losses of lives and unprecedented social and economic damage.

The novel coronavirus is now poised to move fast into the developing world “in a very dangerous way”, and into areas that lack the resources to respond, said United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres calling for massive international solidarity necessary to help those countries.

The Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) is calling for support in preparing for the health crisis, and for a subsequent economic fallout. The measures being taken in Asia, Europe and North America such as physical distancing and regular hand washing will be a particular challenge for countries with limited internet connectivity, dense populations, unequal access to water and limited social safety nets.

What was of particular significance to share with The Salvation Army globally?

With the global spread of this virus into the Global South this will be heavy burden on Salvationists who are serving in the Global South. Resources and supplies will be needed.

The increase of violence against women will be another area where this global pandemic will have an effect on women and children.

The feeding of families and children gives us the opportunities to do what we do best and that is to meet human needs at the point of need.

Web links for more information

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) Situation Dashboard

Strategic Preparedness and Response Plan

WHO Director-General's opening remarks at the media briefing on COVID-19

World Health Organization

Tags: United Nations, Social Justice