COVID 19 has affected most societal systems and caused disruptions in various vital sectors, particularly health, educational, labor, sustainable development, etc. sectors. At the same time, the effects of the pandemic are quite evident in the life experiences of families, which represent a basic pillar of the social fabric and focus of the social nexus.
The pandemic has transformed homes into workplaces, laid off workers, and led to massive cuts in workers' salaries. All these effects are bound to rearrange family roles and finances, as well as require higher levels of managing the tensions arising from role conflicts. In view of the facts that the changes engendered by COVID were abrupt and swift, several families have not been able to find copying mechanisms for mitigating the impact of the pandemic on family cohesion, livelihood, and wellbeing. The pandemic has created numerous pressures on families, including distance learning for children, loss of income or low levels of income, dwindling purchasing power, debt accumulation, widening family disputes, domestic violence, and divorce. Some families have lost some members to the pandemic along with these pressures and tensions. Furthermore, the pandemic has also led restrictions families with regard to marriage ceremonies, family meetings, recreational activities, and worship rituals.
These adverse effects on the lives of families have prompted governments and international inter-governmental institutions whose jurisdictions cover family affairs, work, women, and children to launch initiatives to protect family stability, workers' rights and wages, women and children from domestic violence. Efforts have also been made to combine distance and in-person education in the so-called hybrid education.
The educational sector has witnessed a significant change in response to the pandemic. This change has taken place at all levels: primary, secondary, and tertiary or university educational levels. Distance learning and teaching represents the hallmark of this change. Participants in this process have been confronted with emotional, behavioral, psychological, and cognitive pressures accompanying this change.
The pandemic has exacted a heavy economic toll on the lives of individuals, families, the community, and the world at large. It has caused massive unemployment, economic contraction, and widespread poverty. The pillar of sustainable development, economic growth has been stunted by the pandemic. Important foreign exchange earning sectors (e.g., tourism) in various countries have been adversely affected by COVID 19, depriving those countries of foreign exchange earnings necessary for economic growth and development.
The conference aims to shed light on the life experiences of family in the course of the pandemic. It also aims to shed light on the challenges the pandemic has posed in the various walks of life of individuals, families, and whole communities. Furthermore, the conference will provide insight into the mechanisms used to deal with those challenges, particularly with respect to family affairs and the educational and sustainable development sectors. It is hoped that the conference will yield lessons that will be useful in future strategic planning designed to enhance family wellbeing and cohesion, educational performance, and sustainable development during and after COVID 19.