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2015 was a productive year for the JLIF&LC community!

The Joint Learning Initiative on Faith & Local Communities co-convened the Religion & Sustainable Development Conference in Washington, DC with 140 leading policymakers, development practitioners, and academics in attendance. At a follow-on meeting to be hosted February 2016 by the German government, a new bilateral coordinating mechanism to support faith engagement in the SDGs will be launched.

The Gender-Based Violence Learning Hub completed a Scoping Study and Policy Brief on “The Role of Faith Communities and Organizations in Prevention and Response to Sexual and Gender-based Violence”, which was presented at the R&SD Conference. Elisabet Le Roux and other Hub members hosted a session on the Scoping Paper at the SVRI in September 2015. Hub Co-Chairs, now including Veena O’Sullivan (Tearfund/We Will Speak Out), Diana Arango (World Bank Group), and Elizabeth Dartnall (SVRI), are working with members to develop Scope of Work for 2016.

At the R&SD Conference, the Resilience Learning Hub organized a session on evidence for faith engagement in humanitarian response, including a recently completed Report and Policy Brief on local faith communities and the humanitarian responses among refugees in Irbid, Jordan. Now, the Resilience Hub, under Co-Chairs Alastair Ager and Helen Stawski’s continued leadership, is supporting the collation of the evidence base for the World Humanitarian Summit Special Event on Religion.

Peace & Conflict, JLIF&LC’s newest Learning Hub, was launched with over 115 members! Co-Chairs Sarah Pickwick (World Vision), Lucy V. Salek (Islamic Relief Worldwide), and Alpaslan Ozerdem (Coventry University) are coordinating with Hub members to develop a Learning Hub Scoping Paper on the role of religion in faith-based peacebuilding and conflict prevention. They plan to launch the Scoping Paper at the World Humanitarian Summit in May.

More 2015 updates are here in our Annual Report.

Many thanks for your many contributions – scholarly, financial, and advisory – to JLIF&LC! Check out what’s coming next…

Looking ahead to 2016
At the Annual in-person Steering Committee Meeting last October, JLIF&LC’s future directions were discussed. Key outcomes and decisions included:

  • Decision to continue JLIF&LC for at least three additional years
  • Affirmation of JLIF&LC’s core mandate and scope: To serve as a platform for collaborative learning about religious and faith-based activity and contribution to the health and well-being of local communities, and communication of evidence and best practice to policymakers and practitioners to support their full engagement of faith groups
  • Continuation of JLIF&LC’s structure as a coordinating mechanism for existing organizations around evidence, rather than a free-standing organization
  • Agreement to revise governance and membership structures
  • Retirement of inactive Learning Hubs into “Thematic areas” and establishment of new Learning Hubs
  • For more information, please see the Summary of the Steering Committee’s Agreed Actions and Next Steps

Faith-based Series: The Review of Faith & International Affairs

Following on from the Religion & Sustainable Development Conference, a series of articles will be published in a special edition of the Review of Faith & International Affairs Journal in Fall 2016. Jill Olivier is serving on behalf of the JLIF&LC as managing editor, with more than 10 articles on religion’s role in achieving the SDGs currently being planned. We are grateful for funding from DFID to support this work.

Evidence Focus of the World Humanitarian Summit Special Event on Religion

The World Humanitarian Summit, an initiative of the UN Secretary General to be convened in Istanbul on May 23-24, will be hosting a Special Event on Religion as part of its program. The Resilience and the Peace & Conflict Learning Hubs will be actively engaged in collation of evidence for faith-based contributions to humanitarian action, in support of the WHS Special Event on Religion.

Evidence Working Group of Faith-based Action Framework

Jean Duff, Coordinator of JLIF&LC, has been asked to serve as Moderator of the Evidence Working Group of the Joint Faith-based Action Framework. The Framework encourages joint action of faith groups towards ending extreme poverty and realizing the SDGs. The Framework is grounded in three pillars for action: Collaboration, Advocacy, and Evidence. Working groups have been formed around the pillars in order to catalyze joint action and country-level implementation of the Action Framework.

Resource Spotlight

Please continue to share information relating Faith and Local Communities!

We encourage submission of new resources and events to the JLIF&LC Website.

Want to join or learn more about JLIF&LC?

Please contact:

  • Jean Duff, Coordinator, jeanduff (at)pfaithdev.org
  • Helena Manguerra, Web Administrator, helenamanguerra (at)pfaithdev.org

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