Additional persons at risk of extreme poverty, with less than $ 1.9 a day to live, by 2021 (source: World Bank).

The necessity to face new uncertainties

The Covid-19 pandemic is transforming our societies at all levels. Although we have experienced health crises and major localized disasters in recent decades, this event is unique. We are experiencing a planetary crisis of which we do not know the consequences in the short, medium and long term. Governments, companies and citizens are not yet able to anticipate the effects at the local, national and international levels. What will be the future of work, the economy, the relations between the countries of the North and the countries of the South, what will be the technological changes in this new context, what will be the consequences for world health and poverty?

These are all questions that no one can answer at the moment.

The adoption of new behaviors in the face of new vulnerabilities

The pandemic has shown us an clear reality : no one is immune from the repercussions of this global crisis. Everyone knows someone in their immediate circle who has been weakened, to a greater or lesser extent, by these exceptional circumstances.

Our relationship with vulnerability is changing; our lack of knowledge of what the future will be like after Covid 19 leads us to adopt new behaviors.

Of course, this crisis has sparked a veritable wave of solidarity and a general awareness of what really matters, of the importance of helping each other in times of adversity. For us, professionals working in the field of impact, we must do more than this: we believe that it is urgent that governments, companies and citizens develop more systematic and lasting support scenarios, despite the ambiguity and uncertainty of the situation in which we are currently.

At NooS, we believe that no one should be forgotten or neglected and that we don’t have to stop caring for the planet. Today, each of us must adopt a behavior of openness and solidarity rather than protection and mistrust. We will only come out of this global crisis by adopting solidarity and citizen attitudes and taking into account the Sustainable Development Goals.

Great efforts remain to be made in terms of solidarity

According to a study conducted by IPSOS in France, in partnership with the association Les Apprentis D’Auteuil, “solidarity is being challenged by the Coronavirus”.

On the one hand, the French seem more and more united. During the confinement, new forms of solidarity have emerged: mutual aid between neighbors, thanks for the staff involved directly or indirectly in the resolution of the crisis. In figures, the survey shows that:

  • The French have had more than 2 gestures of solidarity during the health crisis (2.3 on average).
  • For 65% of those questioned, the crisis made them want to show more solidarity.

And yet, this study reveals an obvious paradox:

  • Less than 30% think the world after COVID will be more united

On the other hand, and unfortunately, this new surge of solidarity has not translated into an increase in generosity : the proportion of French people

And yet, more than ever, it is essential to achieve lasting solidarity and generosity.

Now is not the time to refocus on our personal interests. On the contrary, we must increasingly embed solidarity and generosity close to home and beyond borders. The Covid crisis has deepened inequalities around the world and the most vulnerable are the hardest hit. Obviously, a person with limited resources living in 20 square meters with a family did not experience the same confinement as someone who was able to escape to a spacious country house. The consequences in terms of dropping out of school for children, or the precariousness of working conditions are not the same for everyone either. Beyond our borders, the living conditions of the most vulnerable have also greatly deteriorated with the onset of the pandemic.

The figures are enlightening; let us quote for example:

  • According to UNESCO, the Covid crisis deprives more than 1.5 billion children and young people of their education
  • With the epidemic, 87% of the school and student population worldwide have been affected by school closures
  • In developing countries, income losses are expected to exceed $ 220 billion, according to UNDP estimate
  • According to the Center for Disease Prevention and Control, 780 million people worldwide do not have access to clean or safe water and are therefore more vulnerable to Covid-19 and other diseases
  • One in 3 French people have suffered a loss of income, and this figure mainly affects the poorest households, according to the latest Secours Populaire barometer.

More than ever, at a time when inequalities are accentuating at all levels, we have a duty to respond collectively to global societal challenges.

Call to action: The Covid-19 pandemic reminded us of our flaws from a health point of view. It also showed us that we must never lose sight of the current and future challenges in terms of environmental protection, justice, equality, access to basic health care and education for all. Studies show that at the individual level, in the current context, citizens are sensitive to any form of solidarity. However, this does not necessarily seem to translate into an increase in generosity to support priority causes. We call for the responsibility of everyone. We are convinced that the implementation of solidarity scenarios can have a real impact on the world of tomorrow. These, to be effective, must be built more in consultation between organizations and their stakeholders. To cope with the uncertainties and changes that this crisis brings about, organizations must position themselves in a sustainable and systematic manner in responding to major social problems, in consultation with their employees and their customers. It is together, by joining forces and aggregating our wills that we will increase our collective effectiveness.

Photography credits – Cover : Nick Fewings via Unsplash

Sources: Global Partnership, FranceTV info, UN, La Croix, IPSOS, CDC