Hate speech, discrimination and xenophobia are on the rise due to the current pandemic, and governments and institutions are facing numerous challenges in tackling and addressing this issue. COVID-19 related hate speech has serious implications for minority communities. According to the United Nations, it increases the likelihood that they will be excluded politically and socially, deters them from seeking medical help, fosters isolation and stigmatisation and widens the gap for overall social and economic inequality. In extreme situations it can also trigger violence and atrocity crimes.
By focusing on the different challenges refugees and migrants are facing during the pandemic, this webinar will explore possible approaches to combat xenophobia, stigmatization and exclusion in different European countries. It will also combine insights from academic research and from grassroots work with refugees and migrants during COVID-19.
Berkley Center for Religion, Peace & World Affairs
The COVID-19 emergency is disrupting the ongoing strategies and programs of leading international faith-inspired organizations. Many are responding directly to varying dimensions of the COVID-19 emergency while at the same time maintaining their focus on critical development priorities. This webinar will focus on how the pandemic challenges are seen across Asia-Pacific countries. What are the new programs and processes that respond to the current crisis? How are continuing programs faring? Has the promised effort to reimagine a post-COVID-19 world begun?
In this conversation, four leaders of faith-inspired development organizations (bios on the event page) will reflect on specific experiences, focusing on the particularly faith-inspired pieces of their work (for example, mobilization of faith communities for crisis response). This will add important perspectives to the Religious Responses to COVID-19 series, which has been examining religious adaptation to COVID-19 since early March. Dr. Olivia Wilkinson, director of research at the Joint Learning Initiative on Faith and Local Communities and a co-organizer of the project, will moderate the discussion.
This event will be recorded and the video will be posted to the event page after the event date.
Please RSVP here to this event at least 24 hours in advance of the event start time to receive the Zoom Webinar link.
A Iniciativa de Aprendizagem Conjunta para a Fé e as Comunidades Locais (JLI por suas siglas em Inglês) estão apoiando um Consórcio Internacional sobre Nutrir Valores e Espiritualidade na Primeira Infância para a Prevenção da Violência enquanto parceiro de conhecimento. Aprender com seu programa pode ajudar a influenciar outras organizações a integrar valores e espiritualidade em seu trabalho. A JLI sintetizará as evidências para ajudar a sugerir mais pesquisas e documentar estudos de caso priorizados.
Estamos buscando práticas e intervenções de projetos direcionadas às crianças de 0 a 8 anos, incluindo crianças portadoras de algum tipo de deficiência, com diversidade de género, e crianças que vivem em contextos mais frágeis. As práticas têm como objetivo mostrar como a espiritualidade é integrada nas intervenções na primeira infância e como esse fator pode contribuir para o desenvolvimento espiritual, melhores resultados na infância e prevenir e diminuir a violência contra crianças nos primeiros anos. As intervenções também podem mostrar como os líderes religiosos e as comunidades religiosas se mobilizam para desafiar as normas culturais e sociais que toleram a violência nos primeiros anos, contribuindo assim para a redução geral da violência.
Por favor reserve alguns minutos para responder a essas seis perguntas que pode encontrar abaixo e compartilhe quaisquer avaliações ou relatórios relevantes que possa ter.
Berkley Center for Religion, Peace & World Affairs
Each country faces different challenges as they confront the double crisis of COVID-19 infection and related economic and social shocks. In several East Asian countries this comes on top of tensions linked to rising nationalism and interreligious and interethnic divides. Religious beliefs and institutions are deeply engaged in supporting those directly affected by the pandemic, and in looking ahead towards recovery and promoting reforms as lessons from the crisis are learned.
Somboon Chungprampree (Khun Moo) is a Thai social activist working for peace and justice in Asia and supporting far-reaching religious and development networks, including by serving as executive secretary of the International Network of Engaged Buddhists (INEB). His colleague, K. V. Soon Vidyananda (Vidya), entrepreneur and Buddhist leader, and Khun Moo will join Berkley Center Senior Fellow Katherine Marshall in conversation to reflect on who is most vulnerable and what mechanisms are available, formal and informal, to support them. This webinar will explore the responses of religious communities in different countries, including how various communities have engaged with government authorities, the role of interreligious approaches, whether communities are responding with violence or peace, and how the politics and ethics of environmental challenges are affected by the crisis.
Please RSVP at least 24 hours in advance of the event start time to receive the Zoom Webinar link. This event will be recorded and the video will be posted to this page after the event date. Please RSVP to receive an alert once it is posted.
On May 14, 2020, JLI held a webinar where Philipp Öhlmann presented on the first chapter of his book with Wilhelm Grab and Marie-Luise Frost, “African Initiated Christianity and Sustainable Development”. Ignatius Swart, University of the Western Cape, responded. Attendees participated in a discussion following the presentation.
You are invited to participate in a new E-Course on Faith Sensitive Humanitarian Response: Mental Health & Psychosocial support.
The purpose of this new 1.5 hour training is to give the learner an introduction to faith-sensitive response to humanitarian emergencies, in order to strengthen culturally-sensitive and locally embedded assistance.
The module also aims at facilitating the collaboration between the humanitarian sector and local faith actors as well as an understanding of the relevance of faith to individuals’ and communities’ capacity to cope with mental health and psychosocial challenges in humanitarian emergencies.
What you can learn about:
What is faith sensitivity and how does it relate to familiar MHPSS modules and guidelines?
Faith sensitivity as an aspect of localisation of aid
In March 2020, the Religious Responses to COVID-19 project launched the “Faith and COVID-19: Resource Repository,” a digital platform that collects and communicates reliable information related to religious actors in the coronavirus crisis and response. The repository organizes resources so they can be quickly found and used by policymakers, development practitioners, and faith actors who seek to work together in the COVID-19 response. Since the repository was launched, we have seen a steady stream of new guidance documents prepared and published by a range of organizations and networks. Critical reflection on COVID-19 guidance for religious communities and leaders sheds further light on the complexities of faith engagement in the pandemic.
Faith guidance falls into three broad broad categories: guidance from religious institutions of different kinds, guidance from public health and international organizations, and guidance from faith-inspired organizations (like World Vision, Islamic Relief Worldwide, etc.). The early guidance addressed urgent issues of which the most notable were practices linked to gatherings and specific religious rituals. The guidance is progressively expanding to cover a wider range of topics including impact on specific groups (women, children) and related concerns (domestic violence).
The focus during this relatively early stage of the pandemic has been largely on adaptations to religious gatherings and practices, including funerals and burials, as it was here that the most immediate and often jarring changes were needed in response to the nature of COVID-19. Newer guidance materials are starting to pick up on important aspects to the crisis, such as gendered aspects (from the World Council of Churches and from the Network of Religious and Traditional Peacemakers), adaptations needed in low- and middle-income countries (from the Interfaith Health Program), and advice for governments in their faith engagement (from the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change).
We continue to monitor publication of guidance documents (and reactions to them), and the resource repository will be updated accordingly.
To receive a daily email highlighting important additions to the “Faith and COVID-19: Resource Repository,” sign up here.
The JLI is supporting the Consortium on Nurturing Values and Spirituality in Early Childhood for the Prevention of Violence as a knowledge partner. Learning from your program could help influence other organizations to integrate values and spirituality into their work. JLI will synthesize the evidence to help suggest further research and document prioritized case studies.
We are looking for practices and project interventions targeting children in the early years from 0 to 8 and including children with disabilities, boys & girls, children living in fragile environments; The practices aim to showcase how nurturing spirituality is integrated in early childhood interventions and how this factor can contribute to spiritual development, improved childhood outcomes and to preventing and decreasing violence against children in the early years. Interventions can also showcase how faith leaders and faith communities have mobilized to challenge cultural and social norms condoning violence in the early years, thus contributing to overall violence reduction.
Please take a few minutes to answer these six questions below and share any relevant evaluations or reports.
About The Consortium on Nurturing Values and Spirituality in Early Childhood for the Prevention of Violence
The Consortium on Nurturing Values and Spirituality in Early Childhood for the Prevention of Violence shares good practices and develops evidence-based and innovative approaches to nurture spiritual development in the early years. Launched in 2018, it brings together and fosters collaboration among civil society and faith-based organizations, religious communities, multilateral organizations, academia and individual experts.
In 2019, the Consortium conducted five roundtable discussions and mappings to identify good practices in Sri Lanka, India, Lebanon, Kenya and Brazil. The Consortium is now refining the learning from this into a toolkit on the spiritual development of children in the early years and your experience is invaluable.
The JLI Anti-Human Trafficking and Modern Slavery Hub (AHT-MS), IAHT Network, the Rights Lab at Nottingham University, and Walk Free are partnering on a survey on how Covid-19 has affected responses to trafficking and unsafe migration.
The survey aims to:
Share promising practices among NGOs internationally in order to better serve survivors and at-risk populations
Inform advocacy, policy and funding priorities
Our plan is to use this as a baseline and then we’ll be able to collect further information in another few months’ time to see the changes in responses and issues. We know there are many surveys in circulation at the moment. This has been designed to be complementary to those surveys, not a duplication.
According to UNICEF, an estimated 50 million children are on the move in the world today. Some are refugees or asylum seekers, others are internally displaced due to conflict and violence, and millions more have lost their homes in natural disasters.
In response, faith-based organizations have joined together through the Children on the Move coalition which works to end violence against refugee, immigrant and internally displaced children. During this webinar, experts from Arigatou International, Joint Learning Initiative’s head researcher Olivia Wilkinson and experts from World Vision International will look at the realities and challenges for children on the move, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic.
This webinar will also look at the unique contributions of faith communities, such as providing spiritual support for children and their caregivers, offering protection and working to combat xenophobia, racism and discrimination
Dr. Olivia Wilkinson
Dr. Olivia Wilkinson is the Director of Research at the Joint Learning Initiative on Faith and Local Communities. She is a qualitative researcher with expertise in religion, secularism, and international humanitarian action and development. She has partnered with many different humanitarian and development organizations to produce research on topics including localization, refugee response, and peace and conflict. Her new book is called “Secular and Religious Dynamics in Humanitarian Response” and unpicks how secularity is one of many privileges and biases in the humanitarian system, making aid unfair and inappropriate
Andrea Kaufmann is World Vision’s Senior Advisor for External Engagement, building faith-based partnerships to collaborate and advocate for fullness of life for children. Andrea is passionate about the unique and essential role of local faith communities for sustainable global humanitarian, development and advocacy work. Her experience includes grassroots development, partnerships with local faith actors, communications, program design, management and evaluation. She has also had the opportunity to learn from and with Channels of Hope practitioners and facilitators around the world.
Rebeca Rios-Kohn is a citizen of Uruguay and France with 30 years of experience working for the United Nations in the areas of international law, human rights, women and children’s rights. After receiving a Juris Doctor from the University of Richmond, in Virginia she practiced law in the states of Virginia and New York. Thereafter, she held senior level positions with UNICEF and United Nations Development Programme where she advocated for human rights rights policy issues with diverse policy-makers, government officials, parliamentarians, judges, and religious leaders. Ms. Rios-Kohn authored a number of articles and academic papers for law journals, developed studies and training materials on a wide range of subjects, and co-authored Protecting the World’s Children, a UNICEF publication (2007). During her tenure with the UN, she worked in over 30 countries leading advocacy initiatives promoting children’s rights and well-being. Since 2015 she is Director of Arigatou International New York Office, a not for profit organization working for children with headquarters in Japan and leads the initiative Prayer and Action for Children. She was one of the lead writers of the Faith and Children’s Rights: A Multi-religious Study on the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which was developed by Arigatou International in close collaboration with UNICEF and other partners, published in 2019 and available at: www.arigatouinternational.org.
Fred Nyabera is the Director of the Interfaith Initiative to End Child Poverty at Arigatou International. He is a social scientist and a trained theologian with interest in development work. His skills and experience include intra- and interreligious dialogue & action, leadership development, peacebuilding and mediation. He has undertaken graduate and post graduate studies in Sociology, Anthropology, Divinity, Conflict Transformation and Organizational Leadership at the University of Nairobi, Union Biblical Seminary – India, Eastern Mennonites University, Virginia – U.S.A and Africa International University. Previously he served as a pastor at the Nairobi Baptist Church and Karen Community Church. He also served as the Executive Director of the Fellowship of Christian Councils and Churches in the Great Lakes and Horn of Africa – FECCLAHA (a regional peacebuilding NGO with membership in ten countries). He is a recipient of the, 2019 “Spirit of the United Nations.” The award is presented to members of the UN community including ambassadors, UN Staff, NGOs, and youth representatives ¬for upholding the founding spirit of the United Nations.
Moderator: Renata Nelson
Renáta Nelson is the Coordination Officer, at the International Dialogue Centre (KAICIID) in Vienna, Austria. Ms. Nelson completed a BA with a major in Political Science with minor in Religion and History from Rutgers University in 2002 and a MA in International Studies from the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna in 2008. She has been working on programs and projects in intercultural and interreligious dialogue during her 6 years at KAICIID. Her particular focus has been the work on the implementation of the Plan of Action for Religious Leaders and Actors to Prevent Incitement to Violence in partnership with the UN Office on Genocide Prevention and leading the SDG16 work stream within the GIZ-launched Partnership for Religion and Sustainable Development. To-date Ms Nelson’s research has included research projects on interreligious dialogue, education, and the role of religious actors in contributing to the achievement of SDG16.