This online course provides students with in-depth understanding of the COVID-19 Recovery Action Plan for Informal Settlements in the UNECE Region (Recovery Action Plan).
The COVID-19 pandemic has not only created new challenges in informal settlements which already have dense populations, limited water supply and sanitation services, inadequate transport, unregistered residents, inadequate housing with insecure tenure, and unregistered land rights. Residents have generally low incomes and often have few resources, precarious employment, limited digital connectivity, and include many of society’s most vulnerable inhabitants. Overcrowding and housing conditions in informal settlements pose challenges to States to ensure the protection of their residents from the pandemic. In addition, residents of marginalized communities are often inadequately included in public vaccination campaigns and frequently, show greater hesitancy to get vaccinated. The economic impact of the pandemic has in particularly hit these residents and thus, further increased the many other challenges in their day to day lives.
The measures proposed in the Recovery Action Plan are dealing with both the new challenges, created by COVID-19, and the pre-existing ones. Addressing the specific challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic within informal settlements is urgently needed, while also addressing the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This Recovery Action Plan, targeted at national and local governments in the UNECE region, provides an extensive list of goals, targets, and actions that can be advanced by governments, local authorities, residents, community leaders, non-governmental organizations, and other stakeholders to help mitigate and/or prevent the COVID-19 pandemic spread. It is also designed to help build back better to achieve greater resilience against future pandemic risks while simultaneously helping to achieve the goals of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, with a particular focus on SDG 11 on sustainable cities and human settlements.
This Recovery Action Plan shows that appropriate interventions can simultaneously have health, safety and other socioeconomic benefits. The twin goals of increased pandemic resilience, and the achievement of the SDGs can be advanced simultaneously. Additionally, a country’s disaster preparedness can make all the difference, therefore, greater integration and formalization of the informal communities within the broader formal markets is a critical step in the process of achieving greater pandemic resilience, alongside a more just, equitable, and sustainable future.
The Plan is articulated in nine policy areas, each of which is covered in the Course as a separate module. Each module includes mandatory video classes, along with other supplementing materials.
Each successive module is unlocked upon completion of the previous one. Module completion implies a grade of 50% or more in the final test of each module.
Notice that this course depends upon concepts and frameworks discussed in the course on the Guidelines for the Formalization of Informal Construction. Please complete the course on the Guidelines if you do not have a background in managing Informal Settlements.