School of Nursing

La Vida en Los Tiempos de COVID-19

Project Title: La Vida en Los Tiempos de COVID-19: Stories of life under quarantine from women living on the West Side of San Antonio

Project Lead: Andrea Moreno-Vasquez, MPH, Senior Program Coordinator

The partnership with Las Mujeres Westside is a long-standing partnership with the School of Nursing's Center for Community-Based Health Promotion with Women and Children. The group is comprised of mostly Latina women living on the West Side of San Antonio. In collaboration with other community partners, Las Mujeres Westside offers women support, provides opportunities, and impacts communities through service, education, and empowerment. 

Traditionally, the group has gathered monthly in-person to participate in training, workshops, and health-related presentations. However, when the COVID-19 Pandemic hit, we had to transition to hosting meetings via Zoom swiftly. Our meetings are conducted in Spanish and usually begin with a circulo de palabra or talking/healing circle. Each group member can speak, and the other group members listen but do not respond or provide feedback (unless requested). During these circles, we started to hear many of the hardships that communities were facing as a result of the COVID-19 Pandemic. In addition to expressing the insurmountable challenges their families and communities were facing, the Mujeres also highlighted how community members were leveraging resources, knowledge, and connections to assist each other in this time of great need.

These anecdotes during our palabra circles prompted us to delve a little deeper into each woman's unique experience with the Pandemic. We presented the idea of collecting individual interviews from the group, and with the group's support, we started the La Vida en Los Tiempos de COVID-19 or Life in the Time of COVID-19 Study. 

Sixteen semi-structured interviews were conducted with women from two community partners: Las Mujeres Westside and Domesticas Unidas. We used convenience sampling to select women to interview for the study. The interviews were conducted via Zoom, telephone, and face-to-face and in the participant's preferred language (English or Spanish). The interviews were transcribed verbatim and analyzed using the qualitative content analysis method and QDA Miner qualitative analysis software, and Microsoft Excel. 

The study team is in the final stages of analyzing the data; categories that have emerged from the analysis include Faith and Having a Positive Outlook, Work and Finances, For the Community, Sentiments Towards the Pandemic, The Effect on Children, Looking to the Future, and Important Relationships. 

Throughout the COVID-19 Pandemic, Las Mujeres Westside and Domesticas Unidas have remained active and loyal to helping bridge the gaps in resources for families and communities.