COVIDCAS | ZonMW projectnummer 10430032



The COVID-19 pandemic has strained the economies, health-care systems, social structures and living standards on the islands Curaçao, Aruba and Sint Maarten. Using a human rights-based approach this multidisciplinary study will focus on the social impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the State responses towards protecting vulnerable families. We apply a multi-sited, mixed-methods approach to understand the diverse reasons that contribute to the increase in vulnerability and measures that can be taken to build social resilience among families and communities. This study will also evaluate the performance of COVID-19 measures and make recommendations for future outbreaks and epidemics. 


Assess quality of life impact and the societal impact of COVID-19 pandemic and State responses towards vulnerable families on the CAS islands. 

Identify the various ways in which vulnerable families have been and continue to be resilient throughout this crisis. 

Reconsider and improve State responses in a manner that contributes to and strengthens resilience within the families and communities of the Caribbean islands. 


Low income households with a household income < 3500 Antillean Guilders / Aruban Florin per month, a size > 3 persons, without access to welfare. 

Women and older adults, as they tend to be more affected by COVID-19 pandemic and State measures. 

Migrants (undocumented persons from, among others, Venezuela, Colombia, Haiti, Dominican Republic and other islands in the Caribbean), they are extra vulnerable as they lack certain rights and provisions. 


Qualitative research techniques to provide insight into the problem and the opinions, experiences and perceptions of the target group. 

  • desk research: inventory and analysis of policy reports, legal documents and news reports 
  • indepth interviews with 30 vulnerable families per island, 15 red cross volunteers and other stakeholders 
  • focus groups with policy makers and stakeholders to validate the research outcome 

An exploratory quantitative research design will be applied, using a cyclical approach and grounded theory principles for the analysis, to investigate the perception of COVID- 19 measures and the impact of these measures on the human rights situation, resilience and quality of life of vulnerable families in Curaçao, Aruba and Sint Maarten. 


Masterclass Qualitative Research