COVID-19 and Women

COVID-19 is also disproportionately affecting women as our world’s major caregivers, both at home and professionally.

One indicator of ability to maintain employment is the access to telecommuting or working from home. Given that women are more likely than men to be employed in service and caretaking among other jobs that require physical presence, they are more likely to be laid off. Also, as the primary providers of day care and education for their own children, they are more likely to have to choose to leave their jobs.

Ability to Telecommute

Laid off, furloughed, or had their hours or pay reduced because of the pandemic

Black Women
Black Men
White Women
White Men
Source: The Economic Devastation Of COVID-19 Is Hitting Women Particularly Hard

COVIDxNOW and EBW are working hard to address the disparate effects that COVID-19 is having on women around the world. For instance, we are inviting women from a variety of communities and backgrounds to join EBW’s SHE for PPE initiative building opportunities for women to build and expand new businesses related to supplies of critical equipment. In addition, EBW has created a network of women entrepreneurs around the world to provide them with free business education, mentorship and networking opportunities. And COVIDxNOW has built a community of individuals and organizations working to support businesses and efforts of women and people of color to enable them to survive the pandemic and bring about new solutions that will put them in the lead throughout and beyond.

Here are some of the stories from our female business owners and their policy and economic needs.

Shirley Hogsett

Director, EBW Global Chapters and CEO of Destiny Speaks
Shirley Hogsett leads the EBW initiative to build global chapters of women entrepreneurs. The network members have access to free training, mentorship, events and networks. The chapters work within their own chapter and across the chapters that are being established around the world to support and empower each other as they retool, rebuild and restart – and LEAD – during the time of the pandemic. Shirley tells the story of how these chapters were started and where she is going with the initiative.

Janaki Pradhan Shretha

Chairperson, Leading Women Association in Nepal and Vice President Federation of Nepal Cottage and Small Industries
Through her leadership Janaki is working with 50,000 entrepreneurs and small businesses throughout Nepal and helping them to grow, thrive, and survive the COVID-19 pandemic. Janaki is also an entrepreneur herself. She discusses the stories of entrepreneurs in her networks and challenges they face during this time.