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No more harmful traditional practices: working with faith leaders

In 2017 a consortium of members of the Joint Learning Initiative on Faith and Local Communities (JLI) undertook a study funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID), entitled ‘Working effectively with faith leaders to challenge harmful traditional practices'. The United Nations has defined harmful traditional practices (HTPs) as follows: Traditional cultural practices reflect values and beliefs held by members of a community for periods often spanning generations. Every social grouping in the world has specific traditional cultural practices and beliefs, some of which are beneficial to all members, while others are harmful to a specific group, such as women. These harmful traditional practices include female genital mutilation (FGM); forced feeding of women; early marriage; the various taboos or practices which prevent women from controlling their own fertility; nutritional taboos and traditional birth practices; son preference and its implications for the status of the girl child; female infanticide; early pregnancy; and dowry price. Despite their harmful nature and their violation of international human rights laws, such practices persist because they are not questioned and take on an aura of morality in the eyes of those practicing them. Faith leaders are men and women recognised by their faith community, both formally or informally, as playing authoritative and influential leadership roles within faith institutions to guide, inspire or lead others (of faith). This may be within a formal religious hierarchy of accountability, but also includes informal movements. This report serves as a synthesis of the study findings.

Christian Aid and the Leave No One Behind Agenda

The call to ‘Leave No One Behind’ puts equity at the heart of the development and humanitarian agenda for the coming decades. At Christian Aid, we have an ambition to see an end to poverty for all but glaring inequalities mean that we are not starting with the level playing field needed to bring about this change. Some groups and individuals have been marginalised or excluded for centuries and need greater attention than others. Without this focus on equity, we will see a continuation of ‘a rising tide that lifts all boats’ approach that excludes millions of the poorest people and deepens the inequalities that drive conflict, poverty and discrimination. This document is a summary of how Christian Aid views the implications of the principle Leave NoOne Behind in its programme practice. It sets out the heritage of work that Christian Aid brings to this commitment, its current approaches, and ways forward as we seek to make the goal of ‘Equality for All’ a reality in and throughout our programmes. Our work is evolving quickly in this area and so we have sought to create a snapshot of where we are now rather than provide extensive details of the work or long guidance documents. Given the entrenched power imbalances that will need to be challenged and changed by action at personal, local, national, regional and global levels, we know this is a long and complex journey but it is one which is at the very heart of our vision.

Power analysis: A learning review

This learning review explores how power analysis is integrated in Christian Aid resilience programmes funded by CHASE and General PPAs 2011-2016.

Doing justice to poverty: understanding poverty and its implications

A position paper outlining Christian Aid's understanding of what poverty is, what causes it and the consequences it has.