Community Rapid Assessment on COVID-19 in Eastern and Southern Africa

Behavioural Findings and Insights in 8 Eastern and Southern African Countries

A young boy wears a face mask as he walks with his mother on the streets of Mathare, Kenya


We are pleased to share with you a report on early results from the Community Rapid Assessment (CRA) on COVID-19 in ESAR: Behavioral Findings and Insights from Kenya, Madagascar and South Sudan.

Efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19 rely on key behaviour such as handwashing, physical distancing and the use of masks, among others. Risk communication and community engagement (RCCE) programmes can reinforce these behaviours, but to be effective, these strategies should be evidence-based.

The CRA was designed to strengthen this evidence base by gathering rapid time-series data to examine protective practices, coping strategies, and emerging needs in relation to COVID-19. The attached ESAR round 1 report provides a brief overview of the CRA as implemented in three of the eight participating countries in ESAR (Kenya, Madagascar, and South Sudan), focusing on 1) key findings and early insights and 2) early lessons and considerations from applying this approach. The findings provide preliminary recommendations for adjusting current RCCE strategies and demonstrate the value of deploying rapid analytic systems for emergencies like COVID-19.

ESAR Community Rapid Assessment (CRA) end line report on social and behavioral insights from eight (8) countries is now available.  High frequency mobile telephony data reveals how findings have provided a rich and must-needed picture of the behavioural component of the outbreak at the individual and community levels.

We hope you will find the attached reports useful.