The CoVivre Program: Community Development and Empowerment to Address the Inequalities Exacerbated by the COVID-19 Pandemic in the Greater Montreal Area, Canada

Schinazi, J., Santavicca, T., Ngov, C., Vanier-Clément, A., Touré, A., Bolduc, E., & Rousseau, C. (2022, novembre)

Journal of Humanistic Psychology

5 p.

The COVID-19 pandemic had devastating effects around the world, yet it was not experienced equally by all. The emergence of the virus has been linked with the intensification of discrimination and inequities, as well as other systemic issues already present in society prior to the pandemic. The CoVivre Program was created with the mission to facilitate and accelerate initiatives aimed at reducing socioeconomic and health disparities caused by the COVID-19 pandemic in the Greater Montreal Area. CoVivre aims to inform, protect, and support communities, with an emphasis on communities experiencing marginalization, such as ethnic and religious minorities, refugees, asylum seekers, and precarious workers. This mission is guided by the latest research and CoVivre’s values of community empowerment, partnership, democratic communications, and cultural competency, among others. This article describes the process of planning and implementing the program and its components: Communications, Outreach and Awareness Raising, and Psychosocial Support and Mental Health, with a description of one project per component. It also aims to identify obstacles and facilitators of the program, to reflect on their relation with local and global ecosystems and their relationship to community action, and to examine community mobilization as expressing both resilience and resistance to top-down impositions.