A Gap Tracker survey aimed at informing government and private sector stakeholders directly involved in the fight against COVID-19 about the challenges facing the private sector shows that 98% of women in Sierra Leone are buying goods that are more expensive, but are selling less goods.
However, the survey shows that 96% of respondents were not aware of any financial support being provided by the central government or Freetown City Council. It also highlights key findings on access to water to wash hands, the use of face masks, and public awareness about the novel coronavirus and its transmission.
According to Bush Tinker, the institution that carried out the survey in Freetown, the purpose was to capture citizens’ voices and use the data gathered to provide insights for local community intervention as part of ongoing COVID-19 emergency response efforts in Sierra Leone. Along with the partner organisations involved in developing the Gap Tracker, Bush Tinker aims to guide stakeholders towards better informed decisions.
Respondents recommended that stakeholders involved in COVID-19 response efforts provide information on whether market women will receive financial support. Doing this will help address the feelings of anxiety that market women are currently experiencing. Another recommendation was for stakeholders to design coronavirus messages focused on promoting empathy, in order to discourage price-gouging during the pandemic as a non-patriotic practice.
The survey collected responses from 390 market women across six major markets in Freetown Municipality from 15-16 April 2020. Read more about the survey here: http://gaptracker.bushtinker.org/resultsformarketwomen/