 Continued from previous page Strengthening Resilience in the Home Women’s essential role in household disaster preparedness is now even more critical. Data from various regulating bodies around the region has revealed that there is high demand for social assistance grants as result of increased unemployment rates caused by the COVID-19 crisis. Single-parent households that are headed by single mothers especially, will now also require support for the added expense of hurricane preparedness supplies. Women and their families will need recourses to be able to purchase the recommended food items to withstand a hurricane impact. These must be non-perishable and stockpiled to last for at least a two-week period. Individuals must also prepare and test their Family Disaster Plans, taking into consideration public health safety measures. People may have to follow Government stipulated schedules for when they can leave home, wearing masks as they do so, as seen in The Bahamas and other countries. Apart from the normal supermarket and medication stock ups, they will also have to obtain necessary preparedness items from hardware stores before there is a run on these items and crowding in the stores. Individuals will also need to stock up on cleaning supplies and personal hygiene items to maintain household sanitation and personal care, which are already scarce in supply and/or unreasonably overpriced. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the demands of the “care economy” (paid and unpaid care and domestic work) have increased. Schools are physically closed, and parents are expected to work and support their children through online learning. These demands will continue and extend into the Hurricane Season. It is important for men to share the responsibilities of care and domestic work. In addition to the conflation of formal work and unpaid care work that families are experiencing, especially single mothers and fathers, one devastating weather event can exacerbate the ability of parents to provide care and resources for their children. Since most students are now enrolled in virtual classrooms, any one hurricane can result in the disruption of electricity and/or telecommunication services such as internet, which would also affect parents’ ability to work remotely. Therefore, Family Preparedness Kits should include not only important documents such as passports and immunisation cards, but also educational material (secured in plastic) to allow for the continuation of learning and active engagement of children. Schools are physically closed, and parents are expected to work and support their children through online learning. These demands will continue and extend into the Hurricane Season Strengthening Resilience in Communities At the community level, gender-responsive early warning and early action are critical and can strongly contribute to enhanced community resilience and speedier recovery processes. Women play an important role as first responders and essential service workers in communities across the Caribbean region by engaging effectively in local response and recovery efforts. To support women’s local agency for disaster resilience and in an attempt to support communities in boosting resilience, the UN Women Multi Country Office – Caribbean (UN Women MCO) has trained numerous community disaster preparedness and response focal points/officials on gender-responsive prevention, preparedness and response over the past years. The UN Women MCO has also contributed to mitigating the economic impact of the COVID-19 crisis by rejuvenating women’s small and micro businesses and businesses with high female labor force through engaging tailors to produce hundreds of cloth masks in each of 13 CARICOM countries for victims of gender based violence (GBV).  Continues on next page 6

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