Religion and FBO inputs to the Global Compacts: recent meetings at the UN

A meeting at the UN hosted by the  Permanent Observer Mission of the Holy See to the United Nations and Caritas brought together global religious leaders who called the world to share the journey with migrants and refugees. Watch the full event here


As part of a series of related events UNICEF, NGO Committee on UNICEF and Caritas Internationalis co-organized a side event on Interfaith Responses to the Rights of Refugee and Migrant Children and their Families.


A panel moderated by Ame Esangbedo of SOS Childrens’ Villages, of speakers including representatives from Lutheran World Federation, Islamic Relief, Religions for Peace and JLI discussed key issues from a religious and FBO perspective, including solutions and challenges around addressing the needs of refugee and migrant children and their families with a focus on keeping families together, provision of services and combatting xenophobia.

JLI panel presentation (click for presentation) focused on evidence and ongoing research relating to Faith-based responses to Children’s Rights and Migration.


Other events covered:

The Joint Learning Initiative on Faith and Local Communities (JLI-F) pleased to announce the receipt of a grant from the Henry Luce Foundation’s Program on Religion in International Affairs. 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 included the production of a policy brief and a Resource Brief 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 focused on outreach through newspaper articles, infographics, press releases, and social media messaging. These research translation activities will coincide with the final stages of the development and the 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.

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 were coordinated on local humanitarian leadership and refugee response in Amman and Beirut.


For more information please contact the Joint Learning Initiative’s Director of Research, Dr. Olivia Wilkinson at [email protected].


Progress Summary & Resources

Recommendations on the role of local faith communities submitted to the Global Compact Process







The GHR Foundation is partnering with OpenIDEO, an open innovation platform, to conduct the BridgeBuilder Challenge. The BridgeBuilder Challenge leverages the universal call to ‘build bridges’ addressing the pressing and emergent concerns of our time in the areas of peace, prosperity and planet.

The top ideas selected from the challenge will receive a total of $1 million in funding (up to $500,00o for one organization), in addition to support provided by experts. All participants will benefit from the platform’s collaborative improvement process and opportunities for connection to new partners and potential funders.

For more information please see the OpenIDEO brief

*Organizations who submitted projects last year are eligible with some criteria see above brief

Side event at the Asia Pacific Forum for Sustainable Development 2018

Wednesday, 28 March 2018

Organizers: World Vision International (WVI), ACT Alliance, Islamic Relief Worldwide (IRW), Soka Gakkai International (SGI), Arigatou International

World Vision, ACT Alliance, Islamic Relief, Soka Gakkai International, Arigatou International, global faith based organizations launched the Asia Pacific Faith-based Coalition for sustainable development (APFC) on 28 March in collaboration with Asia Civil Society Partnership on Sustainable Development.

The objective of this coalition is to provide greater impetus to the voices of faith communities and effectively engage in Asia pacific regional development discourse feeding to global processes, such as the SDGs. This is an open, inclusive coalition representing different faiths towards achieving sustainable development and peace.

The forum will support the presentation of voluntary national reviews and will assess the progress made with regard to the regional roadmap for implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development in Asia and the Pacific.


Session Moderator

Mr. Norbert Hsu, Regional Leader, East Asia Region, World Vision International (WVI)


  • John Patrick Murray | National Catholic Commission on Migration, Thailand
  • Hiro Sakrai | Director of the Office for UN Affairs, Soka Gakkai International
  • Masud Siddique | Head of Asia Region, Islamic Relief Worldwide
  • Anselmo Lee | Senior Advisor, ADA and APSD
  • Shinji Kubo | Officer – in – Charge, UNHCR Representative in Bangkok, Thailand

The discussion addressed the role of faith in making communities resilient and socially cohesive to achieve sustainable development.

The initial work of the coalition will include mapping faith-based organization (FBO & Faith actor) work in relation to sustainable development in Asia Pacific. Results from their initial survey found that many organizations worked to address SDGs #1, 2, 5 followed by 3, 16 & 17.

*from the introduction ppt presented at the forum by Anoop Sukumaran and Sudarshan Reddy

Read more: Asia Pacific Faith-Based Coalition for Sustainable Development_28 March- Concept Note , World Vision Press Release or APFC launch report

For more information contact Abid Gulzar, Director Advocacy and Justice for Children, World Vision International, ([email protected])

Date(s) - 02/05/2018
10:00 am

Wilson Center


On May 2, the Wilson Center’s Maternal Health Initiative will be hosting a two-panel event in collaboration with World Vision U.S., focusing on the role of faith-based organizations in controlling the HIV epidemic through reaching men and boys with HIV testing, and improving maternal and child health through Healthy Timing and Spacing of Pregnancy.
Following a keynote address from Ambassador Deborah Birx, this first panel discussion will be focused on reaching men and boys who are missing in HIV prevention, care, and treatment today, especially those who are healthy. Who are these men and boys not being reached? What role can the faith community play in reaching this population? Panelists will share learnings on innovations, best practices, and models to engage men and boys for HIV testing and linkage to care. The panel will conclude with an interactive workshop involving voluntary audience participation.
Lunch will be served to participants from 11:00am to 11:45am.
The second panel, following the lunch, will be focused on the intertwining of faith and healthy timing and spacing of pregnancies, from 12:00pm to 2:00pm


  • Introduction, Jared Hoffman

    Vice President, Resource Development, International Programs Group, World Vision U.S.
  • Keynote- Ambassador Deborah L. Birx, MD

    Coordinator of the United States Government Activities to Combat HIV/AIDS (PEPFAR) and U.S. Special Representative for Global Health Diplomacy
  • Moderator, Susan Hillis

    Senior Advisor, Office of the Global AIDS Coordinator, Senior Advisor, Division of Violence Prevention, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


  • Jannette Y. Berkley-Patton

    Associate Professor; Director, Community Health Research Group, Department of Biomedical and Health Informatics, School of Medicine, University of Missouri-Kansas City
  • Dr. Gloria Ekpo

    Senior Technical Advisor, HIV/AIDS Technical Specialist, Health and Hope, International Programs Group, World Vision U.S.
  • Julie Pulerwitz

    Director, HIV and AIDS Program, Population Council

Date(s) - 02/05/2018
2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Church Center for the United Nations


This event will cover what diverse faith traditions teach on nationalism and national identity, as it relates to refugee protection, migration policy, and immigrant integration. Many religions have clear moral teaching on the treatment of refugees and migrants. Yet they have not spoken as clearly on rising nationalist movements that impede the just treatment of refugees and migrants. This panel – comprised of diverse faith leaders and scholars – will discuss how religious teaching on these issues can promote more cooperative and generous responses to refugees and migrants, inform the global compacts on refugees and migration, and ensure that the compacts live up to their promise and potential.

Speakers include:

  • Hon. Judge Mohamad Abou Zeid, Senior Judge in the Family Court of Saida/Lebanon
  • Silas Allard, Associate Director of the Center for Law and Religion and Harold J. Berman Senior Fellow in Law and Religion, Emory University School of Law
  • Rabbi Felicia L. Sol, B’nai Jeshurun

This event is free.

Date(s) - 26/04/2018
6:00 pm - 7:30 pm


A panel discussion with the South Sudan Council of Churches and UN member states, civil society, faith-based organizations and UN agencies


Moderator: Ms. Nyamal Tutdeal, Founder and Executive Director of NyaEden Foundation

  • A brief history of the conflict in South Sudan
  • Video of South Sudanese Council of Churches Peace-building
  • Current impediments to peace – Bishop Arkanjelo Wani Lemi, Bishop of the Africa Inland Church.
  • The role of the South Sudanese Council of Churches in the peace process – Fr. James Oyet Latansio, General Secretary of the South Sudan Council of Churches.
  • Recommendations to UN member nations: how to support the peace process, what to avoid – Bishop Isaiah Majok Dau, Presiding Bishop of the Pentecostal Church of Sudan and South Sudan and board member of the SSCC.

RSVP to: [email protected]

Overcoming the Impasse in South Sudan event flyer

The Global Cause Partnerships (GCP) Team is a dynamic and growing team responsible for building partnerships with organizations committed to fundraising and advocating in support of the world’s most vulnerable children. Partners include service and faith-based organizations, diaspora communities, professional and trade associations and other 501(c)(3) organizations.


Reporting to the Senior Director, Global Cause Partnerships, the Manager will identify, manage and grow fundraising partnerships between UNICEF USA and civil society partners, with a focus on faith-based organizations. UNICEF USA recognizes the shared commitment with these groups to ensuring the survival and well-being of the world’s children, and the Manager will develop strategies to build trusting and long-lasting relationships with these constituencies. The Manager will be responsible for developing new and stewarding existing partnerships within this portfolio to meet fundraising and engagement goals in support of UNICEF’s global work.


This is a three-year grant-funded position.

For full position description see here

Good Practices with Local Faith Communities Submission

DEADLINE EXTENDED, 30th April 2018

The JLI Refugee Hub is working alongside UNHCR to undertake an analysis of Good Practice Examples of Local Faith Community Responses to Refugees as part of the Comprehensive Refugee Response Framework (CRRF) and Global Compact on Refugees processes.

The first stage of the research will identify and examine one or more examples of good practice in each of 7 case study countries:

Honduras, Mexico, Central African Republic, Uganda, Lebanon, Germany, and Bangladesh.

The good practice case studies will be communicated to UNHCR. We will also be working with local researchers to conduct up to 30 interviews with refugees, hosts, and faith leaders in each country to provide evidence from primary research on the good practice case studies. In order to identify good practice case studies, we invite you to submit for consideration good practice examples and recommended interviewees from the 7 countries.

The form will ask you to provide some brief information on the case as well as interview recommendations in the country. The initial findings will be presented at the UNHCR NGO consultations at the end of June.

Please complete the form by COB Eastern Standard Time on the 30th April 2018.

We hope to invite key religious leaders from the case study countries to the events in late June/early July. Please add suggestions to the interview recommendations on the form, identifying them as a religious leader.

We would be grateful if you could circulate this invitation to your colleagues and networks in or with knowledge of the 7 countries.

Again, the link to the form

We will be in touch again in due course to provide further information about the next stage in this 18-month action-research project. This will include capacity building and training elements.

With many thanks and all best wishes,

Dr. Elena Fiddian-Qasmiyeh                             Atallah Fitzgibbon
University College London                               Islamic Relief Worldwide

JLI Refugee Hub Co-chairs

Date(s) - 02/05/2018
12:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Church Center for the United Nations


Every child has a right to grow up with their family, regardless of nationality or migration status.

However, too often children on the move are seen in isolation from their family, and the negative impact on children’s rights, by laws, policies and practices meant for adults, tends to be ignored.

Co-sponsors: UNICEF, NGOCU and Caritas Internationalis

Location: Church Centre’s 2nd Floor conference room. Lunch will be provided.


Caritas Internationalis, UNICEF, and the NGO Committee on UNICEF invite you to a luncheon side event to discuss solutions for refugee and migrant children and their families, with a focus on keeping families together, ensuring safe access to services and promoting inclusion. It will provide an opportunity for religious leaders, migrant and refugee youth, faith-based organizations, and Member States to share their experiences – both lived and from their work on the ground, to identify what works, and suggest ways to close the gaps.


2 May Side Event Flyer