Articles & News


“Partnering with Faith Organizations and Communities on the Sustainable Development Goals/SDGs”

A Series of Strategic Learning Exchanges is organized in June and August 2017 to develop the capacities of United Nations and partner faith-based entities to enhance their programming and policy work.


There is growing recognition in the international development, humanitarian, peace and security community that faith based entities can be critical moral, social and political agents for the promotion of human development and for achieving more durable peace and security within their communities and countries. Based on this recognition, the UN Interagency Task Force on Religion and Development, together with diverse faith-inspired NGO partners and academic institutions, including PaRD members and partners such as KAICIID, World Vision, Islamic Relief Worldwide, Jewish Theological Seminary and World Council of Churches, is organizing a series of SLEs in New York, to collectively review & consider various means of outreach and joint implementation of the SDGs. Participants at this peer-to-peer SLE will come from various UN offices, academia and faith-based development, relief and peacebuilding entities, as well as religious seminaries in New York.

The first SLE will take place on June 5th and 6th, 2017 and the second SLE is set to take place in August 2017.

The SLE, composed of two separate but interlinked workshops, will bring together a range of UN staff members as well as faith-based organizations that have experience in mutual outreach, in the course of their respective work at senior programme and policy levels, around the SDG areas. By specifically engaging in an exchange on development, humanitarian, and peace and security there is an implicit recognition of the significant overlap that occurs amidst these issues, not least because frequently the UN is engaging the same or similar non-governmental organizations and encountering similar challenges and strengths.

The first SLE (on June 5 and 6) will present and discuss actual case studies on the linkages between religious dynamics and actors and the continuum of the SDG’s. This will therefore entail dealing with development, humanitarian, peace and security as well as foreign policy aspects.

The second SLE, slated for August of 2017 (dates and invites will be communicated in due time), will zero-in on the religion and peace and security nexus, with a gender and women’s empowerment focus.

The methods used will be primarily peer-to-peer learning and information sharing. The purpose of this SLE is to explore the linkages between faith and the continuum of development, humanitarian, peace and security work, and discuss the value-added of partnering and collaborating with faith-based organisations and local faith communities, including religious leaders, with a view to appreciating presence and engagement in critical international intergovernmental decision-making fora. It will also consider the nature of development, humanitarian, peace and security work as it intersects with religious issues, the specific challenges and best practices, all with human rights and gender equality as cross-cutting concerns.

Criteria for Participation

  • Actual/demonstrable experiences of partnership with and/or outreach to either UN and/or faith-based organizations;
  • Faith-based representative/participant(s) should be partners of UN entities with actual field experience and prepared to co-sponsor own participation;
  • Overall representation covers diverse SDG areas/issues;
  • Prepared to provide written case studies (as per standard template);
  • Organizers reserve the right to decide on final participation.

The UN Interagency Task Force on Religion and Sustainable Development would appreciate your kind RSVP for the first SLE on “Religion, Development, Peace and Security” to Mr. Leeroy Mapulanga ( by May 25th latest.