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Towards shock-responsive social protection: lessons from the COVID-19 response in Sierra Leone

22 March 2021 — By Yasmina Yusuf, Marta Marzi, Karin Seyfert, Alexandra Doyle

Despite the relatively limited restrictions in place in Sierra Leone to contain the spread of COVID-19, the pandemic is likely to have a staggering impact on poverty. This report documents how the Government of Sierra Leone used social protection programmes to mitigate the negative impact of the pandemic on vulnerable populations. This report analyses the factors that enabled and constrained the effectiveness of the response, at the policy and operational levels, and finds that the Government of Sierra Leone was able to leverage existing social protection delivery systems in their response, but timeliness was constrained by the need to secure additional financing. Finally, the report provides an assessment of the response in terms of coverage, adequacy, comprehensiveness, timeliness, and gender and social inclusion considerations.