In the absence of any effective medicine or vaccine, COVID-19 remains a global threat. Social and political sciences inform us about patterns of behaviour among individuals, communities, societies and states in times of crisis and conflict. In such situations, policymakers and societies can become less tolerant. Violence and exclusion against people perceived to represent a threat may “not only (be) tolerated but also justified”. The roles and reactions of religious agencies in such a context become essential for many people, guiding them to cope with the situation and interact with “the Other”.
The guide has been developed to:
- help interfaith and interreligious organizations work in different contexts worldwide;
- inspire a more systematic growth of activities and initiatives beyond one’s own religion or faith towards developing cross-community cooperation and collaboration;
- enable interfaith cooperation to better deal with the challenges associated with COVID-19;
- help individuals and organizations think of creative options to address the numerous challenges of COVID-19 while following interfaith and development practice principles;
- capture some useful lessons on practical recommendations and best practices.