The Joint Learning Initiative on Faith and Local Communities (JLI) is partnering with UNICEF and Religions for Peace on Faith and Positive Change for Children, Families and Communities: Global Initiative on Social and Behaviour Change. This is a collaboration with the UNICEF Communication for Development in Programme Division and the Civil Society Partnerships Unit in the Division of Communication. The project looks across sectors including health, development, protection, and empowerment of children, especially focusing on the most marginalized, across the life-cycle.

Purpose

Conceived in 2018, the Faith and Positive Change for Children, Families and Communities initiative (FPCC) aims to move beyond single-sector, single-faith, small-scale, ad-hoc and sometimes instrumentalist approaches of faith engagement in development and humanitarian work.

The FPCC model incorporates three main components:

  • Faith-centered research and mapping to ensure evidence-based and contextually-appropriate approaches,
  • Experiential training of FPCC facilitators to ensure interactive and reflective Mind-Heart Dialogue approaches to address issues affecting children, and
  • Establishment of sustainable inter-faith coordination and partnership mechanisms for on-going planning, implementation and oversight.

At country level, this includes faith groups, FBOs and UNICEF country office staff linked to existing country-level inter-religious Councils.

At Regional level, Tripartite Advisory groups (RfP, JLI/FBOs and UNICEF are being established to guide and support the roll-out of FPCC. FPCC was first piloted in ESAR (East and Southern Africa), and WCAR (West and Central Africa) and is now being replicated in other regions: ROSA (South Asia); MENA (Middle East and North Africa) and LACR (Latin America and the Caribbean). Elements of FPCC are also being implemented in ECAR (Europe and Central Asia) with primary focus on Migrants and Refugees and in EAPR (East Asia and Pacific).

Programme Guidance & Facilitators’ Guide

FPCC has released two major documents that cover its core Mind-Heart Dialogue approach and guidance on faith engagement (further project updates covered below). The two documents provide a comprehensive overview of how to implement Mind-Heart Dialogue (Facilitators Guide), including participatory exercises and templates for online and in-person sessions, and how to implement faith engagement (Program Guidance), including key principles for faith engagement and step-by-step actions throughout a program cycle.

Faith-in-Action Guidance Documents

Guidance on key challenges in addressing COVID-19, recommended actions and related multi-religious teachings including resources from technical partners, UNICEF, WHO, IFRC, and the COVID-19 Initiative Reference Document (above). These are intended for local adaptation and use by religious leaders, faith communities, and faith-based organizations at national and community levels.

Guidance Coming soon:

  • Children and Youth Participation
  • Supporting Recovery of Social Services
Cover of Helping People Who Are At Risk PDF
Cover of Adapting How We Gather Together PDF
Cover of Communicating to End Misinformation PDF
Cover of Addressing Violence Against Children and Women

2022 Progress

The First South Asia Regional Strategic Faith Engagement Forum for Positive Change for Children, Families and Communities was held from the 8th to 10th May 2022 in Kathmandu, Nepal. 

This ‘Forum’ brought together religious leaders, faith actors, faith-based organizations and UNICEF South Asia representatives to develop the first South Asia Regional Faith and Positive Change for Children (FPCC) Strategy.

It built on the initial consultations held virtually during the South Asia High-Level Forum for Faith Actors on the 8th December 2021 where commitments to work together on system strengthening of local faith communities for positive change for children, families and communities in South Asia were made.

2021 Progress

High Level Religious Leaders Meeting combined with launching of the Regional Religious Leaders’ Advisory Group

In December 2021, religious leaders/faith actors and FBOs operating at country level, including Ministries and state bodies in charge of religious affairs in 8 countries launched the ROSA Faith Engagement Task Force to develop the first draft of the Regional Religious Leaders’ Engagement Strategy and Workplan and the content of a Declaration of Commitment. A Regional Faith Engagement Forum will take place in May 2022 to discuss the draft Regional Faith Engagement Strategy and Workplan and the Declaration of Commitment, to further articulate these documents, validate them and incorporate relevant activities or linkages with the work of other partners as relevant.

National Mind-Heart Dialogue Team Training

In November and December 2021, over 80 Inter-Religious Council (IRC) and Faith-Based Organization (FBO) nominees from eight countries were trained as national Mind-Heart Dialogue teams and equipped to support the Faith and Positive Change for Children (FPCC) initiative. Facilitators were from diverse faiths and included male faith leaders, women of faith and youth. They will support their IRC to set up a Multi-Faith Advisory Committee on Children (MFACC) that brings faith leaders, FBOs and UNICEF together to find shared priorities and partner for positive change for children. They will integrate Mind- Heart Dialogue into the internal structures and mechanisms of the MFACC; and be deployed to facilitate Mind-Heart Dialogue according to their priorities.

2020 Progress

In November and December 2020, the partners initiated trainings in East and Southern Africa. Read more about the first training here

As of June 2020, the partners held eight regional webinars to increase awareness and strengthen coordinated efforts through the global Faith-in-Action campaign, to mobilize inter-faith commitments of Religious Leaders and Faith representatives including Women of Faith and Interfaith Youth Network Members to support the specific calls to action; to equip these influencers with a standard set of global guidance with messages and resources that can be customized for local use and to share existing examples of best practices to motivate others

2019 FPCC WorkRock: Reports from Early Adopter Countries

FPCC WorkRock is a participatory process to develop a country-specific Journey of Change for Children. Convened by national faith councils and UNICEF, diverse religious leaders, including women and youth, came together with UNICEF Country Office representatives for an intensive four day WorkRock. Inspired by heart mind dialogue, participants drew on their own childhood experiences, formative research they conducted with children and youth in their own communities, and their experiences regarding children’s needs, to spotlight priorities for positive change for children in their communities, and to develop a detailed Journey of Change strategy to address the issue(s). They framed action plans at personal, institutional and national levels, in some cases formalized in the form of Declarations, and made commitments to collaboration and change.

The summary reports for each country can be found below, along with WorkRock key documents and resources shared with all participants.

2018 Partnership Achievements

Literature review- 91 resources reviewed in-depth, whittled down from 1600+

17 country-specific case studies from interviews with Faith Actor Partner (e.g. Inter-Religious Council of Leaders, Faith-based Universities, National FBOs and faith-based networks), Government Partner, and UNICEF on partnerships – 42 people interviewed

Country mapping & Bangkok consultation

Content review – 27 toolkits reviewed

Draft Theory of Change development consultation with 13 institutions

View the Faith and Positive Change for Children Web Platform for resources 2018 Workshop Report and other documents as the collaboration continues to progress