Source: Forced Migration Current Awareness Blog
Courses: UN System Staff College training on ‘Partnering with Faith Organisations in Development, Health and Humanitarian Work’ from 22-24 October 2013 in Rome
I would like to share an opportunity for a Strategic Learning Exchange (SLE) co-organised by UNSSC, UNAIDS, UNFPA and UNHCR. Entitled ‘Partnering with Faith Organisations in Development, Health and Humanitarian Work’, the SLE explores the linkages between faith and humanitarian/development work, and brings together UN staff members who have experience engaging with faith-based organisations and communities in the course of their respective work in operational contexts.
In addition to those working within the UN system, practitioners working in the field of forced migration are encouraged to apply.
The SLE will take place from 22-24 October in Rome, Italy. Please note that the deadline for subscription is 15 September 2013.
The course fee is USD 1,500. Additionally, applicants will be expected to cover their own travel, accommodations and meals.
More information is available in the UNSSC website at: http://www.unssc.org/home/activities/partnering-faith-organisations-development-health-and-humanitarian-work-rome-22-24-octobe
To apply, follow this link: http://www.unssc.org/home/activities/enrolment-form-supervisor?key=13.GC.001.FD
Partnering with Faith Organisations in Development, Health and Humanitarian Work – Rome, Italy, 22-24 October 2013
‘If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.’
Nelson Mandela, Former President of South Africa
There is growing recognition in the international development and humanitarian communities of the role of faith in providing significant moral, social and political agency for human development and resilience in the face of hardship and adversity. Religious institutions, communities of faith and faith-based NGOs are carrying out critical development and humanitarian relief activities, including in entrenched situations of conflict. How can the resources these organizations bring to the table (human, financial and spiritual) be better understood and more effectively tapped by all of those working to serve the very same communities?
Many UN organizations and offices are today partnering with faith-based or faith-inspired service-delivery NGOs, local faith communities and religious leaders. Yet these forms of engagement also entail challenges and concerns. As the United Nations system reviews – and sets – its post-2015 sustainable development agenda for the decades to come, it is timely to examine the objectives, means and outcomes of such partnerships.
The aim of this Strategic Learning Exchange (SLE) is to explore the linkages between faith and the continuum of humanitarian to development work. It will consider the nature of development and humanitarian work, the timeframes for interventions and the types of populations served. The three-day meeting will examine human rights and gender equality as cross-cutting concerns, as well as lessons learned in the programme design, implementation and evaluation phases.
This SLE will bring together a range of UN staff members who have experience engaging with faith-based organizations and communities in the course of their respective work at senior programme and policy levels. Several faith-based partners will also be invited to reflect on their experiences of engaging with the UN in service delivery, advocacy and capacity building. All participants are expected to bring their expertise on faith and various programmatic areas, such as health (HIV/AIDS, maternal and child health), gender equality, education, conflict transformation, humanitarian relief and climate change, and document it in preparation for the course as per standard case study formats.
The training method will follow the current trends in UN staff education and be primarily peer-to-peer learning and information sharing. It will further link the human-rights based approach to programming and house it within the UN’s Delivering as One framework.
Expected Outcomes of the SLE:
Participants can expect to take away the following:
. Enhanced understanding and ability to clearly articulate the linkages between faith and development and humanitarian work in contemporary contexts, including in the context of globalization, political change, conflict, protection, climate change, the economic and financial context and impact on aid effectiveness, social and cultural diversity, etc.
. Strengthened capacity to identify and articulate opportunities and challenges, strengths, weaknesses, entry points and modalities for:
(a) Partnership with faith-based NGOs and communities in the areas of knowledge-transfer, capacity building, advocacy, and enhancement of national ownership processes; and
(b) Strategies aimed at strengthening and overcoming some of the challenges associated with these partnerships (government relations, NGO/CSO dynamics, etc).
‘Finally we can learn from each other on an issue we were not even allowed to acknowledge before – the power of religion in the lives of millions of people. Very pleased you also brought on board the FBOs so we are not preaching to each other only, but we actually have their own voices to inform us’.
‘Why did it take us so long to have this?! Some of us started already in the early 1970s to urge the international development community to undertake these kinds of partnerships.on reflection. perhaps this was the right time so we could think together on what we have already learned and how much further we need to go. This has been very helpful for me to realize what is perhaps the obvious, but then again, we need to be reminded of how to deal with the obvious’.
‘Rarely does one get an opportunity to boast about one’s work and still be also humbled by the work of other colleagues dealing with such challenges. What a rich experience’.