New ways of working to get the job done
The evidence is mounting. The COVID-19 crisis is plunging millions of children and women into vulnerability. From increased risks of negative social and mental health impacts, to violence and gender based violence (GBV), this global pandemic is exacerbating existing vulnerabilities and creating new ones, while undermining services that protect children, including social services.
Primero has a role to play in helping social services delivery by providing these essential workers with the digital tools they need to conduct remote case management. Primero promotes continuity of care and accountability to clients. For more details, see our latest brief: COVID-19 Case Management with Primero.
These services can't wait, so the teams that implement Primero are also innovating, creating new ways to bring the system to the field and to support users.
GBVIMS+: Transitioning to remote rollouts for COVID-19
Partners providing specialized GBV services, like many others, have had to adjust their mode of service delivery to respond to COVID-19. In some contexts, face-to-face interaction between GBV caseworkers and their clients has halted. Restrictions to in-person support and enforcement of social distancing policies have led many frontline actors to adapt services to remote delivery methods. This has increased demand for the GBVIMS+/Primero, a digital GBV case management and incident monitoring tool that allows for the collection, storage, and analysis of GBV survivor data in a safe and ethical manner.
To respond to this need, the global GBVIMS Technical Team - a group of highly specialized professionals managing deployments of the GBVIMS+ - delivered its first-ever GBVIMS+/Primero remote training to 40 participants representing 14 organizations in 3 countries (Bangladesh, Libya and Nigeria). Adapting existing in-person GBVIMS+/Primero training materials, the Team was able to reach those in need despite barriers to on-site support and training, and restrictions to international travel.
The remote training spanned five days in June and integrated a series of webinars, practical sessions on the GBVIMS+ web and mobile applications, and tailored support for all who participated. In addition to covering the core concepts of GBV data management and basic tools, the sessions included new modules on the GBVIMS+/Primero functionalities that monitor quality of services, strengthen supervision (including remote supervision), and support for frontline case workers.
The Team trained users from five new Data Gathering Organizations (DGOs) to roll out GBVIMS+/Primero in the next month. Existing DGOs were also encouraged to take advantage of the training to scale up GBVIMS+ use within their organization. This capacity building also helps inter-agency coordination bodies establish pools of trained GBVIMS+ users that can lead step-down training in country.
This was the first of a series of remote GBVIMS+ trainings that the GBVIMS Technical Team will be delivering in the coming months. Upcoming trainings will target new GBVIMS+ user organizations in Lebanon, Syria cross-borders response, Somalia, and South Sudan.
CPIMS+: Remotely supported go-live for Cambodia
As COVID-19 disrupts and threatens the lives of millions of children worldwide, the need is greater than ever for enhanced social services and efficient case management. With lock-down being the new normal, remote case management is the only alternative in many places. CPIMS+/Primero offers a secure, rights-based solution for online case management, and our teams around the world are pushing harder to deploy Primero instances in critical settings as fast as possible.
This month, the Primero Team conducted the Training of Trainers in Cambodia, where CPIMS+/Primero will become the digital backbone of the Ministry of Social Affairs, Veterans and Youth Rehabilitation (MoSVY) nationwide child protection case management practice.
UNICEF Cambodia, with financial support from USAID and global thematic funds (Norway), has been working with MoSVY for the last year to prepare the CPIMS+/Primero rollout. Through their dedication and technical expertise, a comprehensive plan to strengthen national child protection systems has been put in place. Despite the challenges posed by COVID-19 pandemic, the team decided to move ahead with the CPIMS+ training to stay on track for a go live in July 2020. There really is no time to lose. The system will immediately begin supporting case workers to manage child protection cases in response to COVID-19.
In Cambodia, CPIMS+/Primero will also be linked with other child protection actors, NGOs and CSOs, particularly via the OSCaR system used by the Family Care First-React network led by Save the Children. An innovative interoperability platform called Open Function will make this linkage between systems possible, increasing efficiencies, strengthening MoSVY's capacity, and helping to unify case management processes in the country. Working together, we deliver better.
As travel options were limited, the training was conducted entirely online. The training materials and the app were prepped in English and Khmer to make the process accessible, replicable, and interactive. No small task. The facilitators implemented a mixed model using Zoom calls to explain and demo the system; Google Classroom to share resources, assign homework and collect feedback; and a CPIMS+/Primero simulation environment where the trainees could perform their tasks and interact directly with the system under the supervision of our facilitators.
This is not an ideal time to push ahead with complex deployments. Even in the best of times, rolling out and scaling up a multi-stakeholder digital platform is challenging. But what is the alternative? We cannot leave our partners to fend for themselves, with paper-based systems and inappropriate digital tools, facing a global crisis such as COVID-19. Time is of the essence. Our teams are raising the bar, adapting, developing and improving new tools and strategies, and always focusing on good, principles-based, child- and survivor-centered programming. That's the task, and we are up to it.