Switzerland's responses to COVID-19 in Mongolia

Press releases, 04.05.2020

Despite being itself affected by the COVID-19, Switzerland decided to show solidarity and support to Mongolia in facing the negative consequences of the anti-COVID measures affecting the Mongolian population.

SDC and People In Need distributed education and food kits for children of vulnerable families
SDC and People In Need distributed education and food kits for children of vulnerable families ©SDC/PIN

Switzerland therefore adjusted its funding to its 15 operational projects and considered new ones. Decisions taken focus mainly on the most vulnerable people not to be left behind, as well as on tools/techniques to study and monitor the situation and its consequences for informed decision-making by the Mongolian authorities. 

Among the major decisions taken are: 

  • First immediate responses: New project  implemented by the NGO People in Need to counter the negative effect of the kindergarten’s closure, providing 750 kindergarten children with hygiene, nutrition and education kits to reduce the burden on families and improve the nutrition, hygiene and education of the children. An additional budget supports 450 additional kids.

  • Another project with World Vision, co-funded with the European Union (EU), provides education, sanitary, and food packages which will be provided to vulnerable children and their families in 7th, 11th and 12th khoroos in Songinokhairkhan district of Ulaanbaatar and in Selenge province. A total of 250 households will be receiving this aid, including 500 children. Case management response (rehabilitation, legal, medical services) to children exposed to sexual violence is also increased. The latter services are provided by the NGO Beautiful Hearts. 

  • Combating Gender-Based Violence Project (GBV), with UNFPA and the Government of Mongolia: Switzerland has agreed to add 2 additional service centers, add psychological services and conduct a COVID-related GBV assessment to the current phase. The next phase of this project - currently under approval - has embedded budget to fund activities based on the recommendations of this upcoming assessment by UNFPA. 

  • Internal Migration project, with IOM and the Government of Mongolia: the Displacement Tracking Matrix (DTM) system established by the project is recognised and used by the Mongolian Government, also now for emergency interventions. Data collection is expanded to the entire country. Moreover, trainings to NGOs, capacity building of khoroos’ staff and public campaigns will all include aspects related to preparedness and prevention of COVID-19. 

  • Mainstreaming Social Accountability: a 2nd phase of this project is under negotiation with the World Bank. SDC is currently looking at possible anti-COVID implications. 

  • Finally, Switzerland currently explores possibilities to establish and co-fund a mechanism with other members of the International Community, in order for other anti-COVID initiatives to be funded through this joint mechanism.

For more information, please contact: tansagmaa.tsog@eda.admin.ch.