On October 16-19 the Faith Action for Children on the Move Global Partners Forum will be held in Rome, Italy. The Forum provides a platform to bring together a diverse group of faith-based organisations.
The co-organizers, ACT Alliance, ADRA, Anglican Alliance, Arigatou International, Islamic Relief Worldwide, Joint Learning Initiative on Faith & Local Communities, Mennonite World Conference, Micah Global, The Salvation Army, Seventh-Day Adventist Church, World Council of Churches, World Evangelical Alliance and World Vision believe that by working together we can end violence against migrant, refugee, and displaced children and their families.
In preparation for the Forum, the co-organizers along with participating partners reviewed the evidence and approaches on how to work as faith actors. Three themes emerged which will shape the programme and the collective action plan:
Spiritual support to children and caregivers as a source of healing and resilience
Strengthening the continuum of protection for children on the move
Building peaceful societies and combating xenophobia
Learn: Compile and analyse current responses of faith communities, the programme approaches we use, best practices, policy frameworks, advocacy efforts and gaps.
Exchange: Discern, share, and build consensus among faith groups, alongside decision makers, children and communities on issues related to violence, migration, displacement, and trafficking.
Inform: Produce a publication capturing the essence of the process, key issues, and the plan of action to inform, inspire, and equip others into the future.
Plan: Plan action to increase awareness, strengthen partnerships, improve delivery, scale up interventions, and influence decision-making.
Read the Learning Briefs
We invite you to participate in the forum to bring experiences to share on the three themes, or follow along with with us virtually.
Click the link below for further information about the forum, registration, and accommodations can be found below. Please share the information with other colleagues and institutions which may be interested in participating.
JLI is happy to announce new board members joining the JLI Board of Directors
Catriona Dejean is Tearfund’s Director of Strategy and Impact, and previously headed up the their Impact and Effectiveness Team. Prior to this, she was a consultant in the social enterprise sector, providing advice to UK and international clients. She has also worked for World Vision on development programmes, and at strategy level – predominantly in Latin America. She started her career in environmental consultancy in the private sector. Catriona also served as a trustee for Cafedirect Producers’ Foundation (now Producers’ Direct) – an award-winning fairtrade enterprise, led by farmers across East Africa and Latin America.
Rev Christo Greyling is the Senior Director for Faith – Advocacy and External Engagement for World Vision International. He was co-responsible for the development of the Channels of Hope methodology which has catalysed nearly 500,000 faith leaders in 45 countries to respond to difficult development issues such as child protection, maternal and child health, HIV and gender. He is passionate to build meaningful partnerships and collaborate with faith based agencies and faith actors to meaningfully contribute towards SDG outcomes and child well-being.
Dr Mohammed Shareef is the Research and Development Manager at the Humanitarian Academy for Development. He is a Fellow of the Royal Asiatic Society (London). He has previously worked for the United Nations and as a Visiting Lecturer in Politics and International Relations of the Middle East at the University of Exeter in the United Kingdom. He is also a former Lecturer in International Relations at the University of Sulaimani in Iraqi Kurdistan. Shareef completed his PhD in International Relations at the University of Durham and has an MSc in International Relations from the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom.
Thanks and best wishes to Hiruy Teka from Samaritan’s Purse and Lucas Koach from Food for the Hungry who will be leaving the JLI Board of Directors.
Dr Jörg Haustein is Senior Lecturer in Religions in Africa at SOAS with a focus on Christianity and Islam. He has a special interest in the historical intersection of religion and development in colonial and post-colonial Africa and its effects on the present. Jörg Haustein is Co-Investigator of the AHRC-funded research network ‘Keeping Faith in 2030: Religions and the Sustainable Development Goals’.
Major (Dr) Elizabeth Garland is Impact Measurement Learning Coordinator and International Statistician at The Salvation Army International Headquarters. Major (Dr) Garland has worked in a number of settings within the Salvation Army in both Australia and overseas. Overseas appointments include Ghana, Zimbabwe and Southern Africa. Whilst overseas, Major Garland completed further degrees in health, including a Master of Primary Health Care and Master of Health and International development (Flinders University Australia). Major Garland completed and was conferred a Doctorate of Public Health (Flinders University Australia) in 2015.Currently Major (Dr) Garland is working at the International Headquarters of the Salvation Army in London as the Impact Measurement Learning Co-Ordinator and International Statistician. Part of this work is developing ways of measuring The Salvation Army’s work and ministries across the world. This work includes how we measure the Salvation Army’s programmes and activities in relation to the Sustainable Development Goals.
The Joint Learning Initiative on Faith and Local Communities (JLI) is pleased to announce a research collaboration with UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, in 2018-2019. Generously funded by the European Commission Department for International Cooperation and Development, the project, titled “The Roles of Faith and Local Faith Communities in Supporting Refugees” aims to examine the ways in which local communities provide different forms of support to, and advocate for the protection of refugees in Honduras, Mexico, Uganda, Germany, and Lebanon.
The research will involve interviews and focus groups with approximately 180 refugees, members of host communities, and faith leaders in Honduras, Mexico, Uganda, Germany and Lebanon. The project will be carried out in collaboration with Dr. Elena Fiddian-Qasmiyeh at University College London and Atallah Fitzgibbon at Islamic Relief Worldwide, the co-chairs of the JLI Refugee and Forced Migration Learning Hub. Dr Fiddian-Qasmiyeh and Dr. Olivia Wilkinson, JLI Director of Research, will oversee the action-research project, which aims to generate locally-grounded evidence and identify examples of good practices of community-led responses to refugees across these diverse countries. We will then draw on this multi-sited evidence to inform the development of a pilot training module for local faith actors and international partners seeking to work with each other.
Project activities will examine the role of local communities and local faith actors in responding to the needs and rights of refugees in the above countries within the context of the implementation of the Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF) and upholding the New York Declaration’s commitment to meaningful consultation and engagement with diverse stakeholders. The first phases of the project include the completion of interviews, a desk-based evidence review, and preparation of case studies of locally-led responses which will serve as inputs to the Global Compact on Refugees.
Other activities will focus on creating a pilot training & modules to not only build capacity but also raise awareness between local faith actors and international partners. These will help to inform new audiences in the humanitarian and development field of the existing and growing evidence base on the nuances of religious, and faith-based work for refugee response. It will also provide implementable recommendations for UNHCR and other stakeholders to improve partnership and the effectiveness of humanitarian response to people affected by displacement.
Religious and Faith-based Contributions to the Well-being of Children
The Joint Learning Initiative on Faith and Local Communities (JLI) is pleased to announce the initiation of a partnership with UNICEF over the next three years. The project, titled “Faith for Social and Behaviour Change Initiative” is a collaboration with the UNICEF Communication for Development in Programme Division and the Civil Society Partnerships Unit in the Division of Communication. The research aims to generate knowledge on the specific roles, caveats, effective strategies and demonstrated impact of faith-based organizations in social and behaviour change. The project will look across sectors including health, development, protection and empowerment of children, especially focusing on the most marginalized, across the life-cycle.
Project activities in 2018 will include a literature review, country-specific case studies, content review, and mapping culminating in the translation of this evidence into a conceptual framework and models for systematic engagement with FBOs at scale for social and behavior change. The partners will collaborate with Religions for Peace to hold a multi-country consultation in Bangkok in July to input into the programmatic framework.
Dr. Olivia Wilkinson, JLI Director of Research, will oversee the research work focused on evidence generation, development of programming frameworks, and provision of technical support for engagement of FBOs in social and behavior change communications. Jean Duff, JLI Coordinator will provide guidance on the conceptual framework for scaling up collaboration with the faith community for impact on the well-being of children. Stacy Nam, JLI Knowledge Manager, will support the research and promote collaboration with relevant JLI Learning Hubs and facilitate a “whole of JLI network” engagement in this project.
For more information please contact the Joint Learning Initiative’s Director of Research, Dr. Olivia Wilkinson at [email protected]
The Center for Faith and the Common Good (CFCG) is pleased to announce the receipt of a grant from the Henry Luce Foundation’s Program on Religion in International Affairs, to be carried out by The Joint Learning Initiative on Faith and Local Communities (JLI). The project, titled “Religion, Refugees, and Forced Migration: Making Research-informed Impact in Global Policy Processes” will be in collaboration with Dr. Elena Fiddian-Qasmiyeh at University College London and with the support of Atallah Fitzgibbon at Islamic Relief Worldwide, the co-chairs of the JLI Refugees and Forced Migration Learning Hub. Dr. Olivia Wilkinson, JLI Director of Research, will oversee the work focused on the translation of research for impact on policy and practice.
Project activities will include the production of policy guidelines and annotated bibliographies that synchronize existing research on faith and refugees with the three main themes of the programme of action for the Global Compact on Refugees (reception and admission, meeting needs and supporting communities, durable solutions). Other activities will focus on outreach through newspaper articles, podcast episodes, infographics, press releases, media packs, and social media messaging. To ensure that these activities reach the right people, the researchers will also undertake a mapping exercise of key influencers and then arrange a series of consultations and briefings to reach out to specific groups in global hubs of decision making and activity on refugee response. Briefings are planned in New York around the General Assembly in September as well as in Geneva, and Beirut or Amman.
These research translation activities will coincide with the final stages of the development and then adoption of the Global Compact on Refugees. They will help to inform new audiences in the humanitarian and development field of the existing and growing evidence base on religious belief, practice, and faith-based work related to refugees.
For more information please contact the Joint Learning Initiative’s Director of Research, Dr. Olivia Wilkinson at [email protected].
4:00pm: Do you have faith in the SDGs?Faith-sensitive gender justice mainstreaming, towards inclusion
of faith actors, Co-organised with LWF, FCA and WCC UNFPA, UN Women, Islamic Relief and Global Affairs Canada (US 4 West 43rd Street New York, NY Social Hall (between Avenue of the Americas & Fifth Ave.)
Friday 16, March
10am: Launching the Global Consultation on the Islamic Gender Justice Declaration, Islamic Relief Worldwide (RSVP Required)
12:15pm: Policy Roundtable of the Faith-Based Community of Praxis on Gender Justice, ACT Alliance (Invite only)
6pm: 4th Annual CSW Interfaith Service of Remembrance and Gratitude, . Sponsored by United
Methodist Women, NGO CSW, URI, Parliament of the World’s Religions, Temple of Understanding, International Federation of Women in Legal Careers (Church Center for the
United Nations, Tillman Chapel 44th St and 1st Ave)
Monday 19, March
10am: Building Bridges: developing effective partnerships between faith and secular actors to
challenge discriminatory gender norms and secure rural women’s rights. Co-sponsors: Danish Mission, ACT Alliance, UNFPA (Ex-Press Bar, UN Secretariat (Entrance on East 46th street
and 1st Avenue)
Role of Religion and Faith-Based Organizations in International Affairs: Perspectives on Migration
On 22nd January 2018, the Fourth Annual Symposium on the Role of Religion and Faith-Based Organizations in International Affairs was held at the UN Secretariat in New York. The full-day event was organized by ACT Alliance, the General Board of Church and Society of the United Methodist Church, the General Conference of Seventh-Day Adventists, and the World Council of Churches. Co-sponsors were the Adventist Relief and Development Agency (ADRA), the Parliament of World Religions, and the United Nations Office on Genocide Prevention and the Responsibility to Protect on behalf of the United Nations Inter-Agency Task Force on Engagement with Faith-based Organizations. The focus of this year’s symposium was “Perspective on Migration: Displacement and Marginalization, Inclusion and Justice.”
Deputy Secretary-General, Amina J. Mohammed. Ms. Mohammed opened the event and reported that this was an issue close to the Secretary General’s heart. She acknowledged the ways in which faith-based organizations can bring both their extensive experience and moral voice to the work of providing for displaced people. Other speakers included many JLI member organizations, such as Rev. Dr. Olav Fyske Tveit, General Secretary of the World Council of Church and Mr. Rudelmar Bueno de Faria, General Secretary of the ACT Alliance.
Jonathan Duffy, JLI Board co-chair and President of ADRA spoke in the afternoon session on “Development, Humanitarianism, and Human Rights.” In his speech, he highlighted the work of the JLI in convening on evidence related to religion and refugees and mentioned the new scoping study on this topic. Dr. Olivia Wilkinson, JLI Director of Research, attended the event and spoke to attendees about the scoping study.