Published: 2021-07-27

Family engagement amidst COVID-19 pandemic: a cross-sectional study from Pakistan

Mohsina Hussain, Komal A. Rahim, Fatima Shafiq, Anita Allana, Shelina Bhamani


Background: Family engagement in the early years of a child’s life is one of the most powerful predictors of a child’s development. Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, family engagement has been affected in numerous ways. Thus, this study aims to identify the perception of parents on the change in dynamics of family engagement between parents and their children during the pandemic in Pakistan.

Methods: A cross-sectional study design was followed using an online survey. The survey was administered to parents to assess their perception related to the effect of COVID-19 on family engagement as a whole.

Results: The 90 parents participated in this online survey majority of whom had children aged 9 years and above (n=30). Most of the parents talked to their children daily, had one mealtime together, watched Television, and spent time with each other daily. There were some statements over which the parents marked ‘frequently’ and ‘hardly ever’ such as doing exercise, reading to the child, and supervising screen time. Results of the study show that the COVID-19 pandemic has affected interactions between parents and their children.

Conclusions: Family is the basic unit of society. It plays a significant role in establishing life-long positive relationships. Family is a child’s first exposure to a nurturing environment and impactful engagements which helps in growth and mental development. COVID-19 has posed an overwhelming burden and affected the social interactions of parents with children. Social media advocacy and schools have supported in providing resources for continued learning with the participation of other members of the family.



Family engagement, Parenting, COVID-19

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