To alleviate the impacts of COVID-19 policies, many initiatives have been developed by civil society organisations – NGOs, local governments, or citizens. A team of national researchers from the RESISTIRÉ project has collected and highlighted a set of particularly relevant initiatives in 27 European countries and in Iceland, Serbia, the United Kingdom and Turkey. These Better Stories cover eight specific domains: gender-based violence, the labour market, the economy, gender-pay and pension gaps, gender care gaps, decision-making and politics, environmental justice, human and fundamental rights.

This Better Story was collected by Marloes van Engen



From Peru to Rotterdam

Hailing from Peru, Liesbeth Kerstens initiated an NGO during her volunteer work there, focusing on aiding street children who suffered from sexual violence, poverty, alcoholism, and neglect. When she got back to the Netherlands, she stayed very committed and didn’t change her focus. Initially, she worked on sourcing funds for the Peruvian context before collaborating with Patrick in 2005. Together, they adapted their efforts for Rotterdam’s local children, gradually shaping their initiative into a volunteer organization with a clear mission: from vulnerable to vigorous for those in need we make tailormade solutions by role models that have hands-on experience.”

A tailored digital programme

During the lockdown, Stichting Mano displayed resilience by swiftly developing digital programmes tailored to local citizens with limited literacy. These included personalized coaches for topics like ‘Literacy and Money’ and ‘Literacy and Health,’ along with essential language courses. These online alternatives replaced traditional in-person sessions and cafes, allowing for continued community engagement and education.


Find out more about the initiative

Image by Suad Kamardeen from Unsplash