Ms. Maria Lucia Uribe, Director of Arigatou International Geneva, and Ms. Eleonora Mura, Program Officer, attended the Partnership on Religion and Sustainable Development (PaRD) General Assembly from 24 to 27 June 2018 representing Arigatou International.
The General Assembly was attended by over 80 representatives of governmental and intergovernmental entities as well as diverse civil society organizations and faith-based organizations from Africa, the Americas, Asia, and Europe.
The overarching topic of the meeting focused on innovative formats of cooperation to engage the social capital and capacities vested in diverse faith communities for sustainable development and humanitarian assistance in the spirit of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.
Ms. Uribe moderated the opening session of the assembly on the topic: Multi-sector collaborations with faith communities and critical importance to current challenges. The panel featured Ms. Louise Aubin, Deputy Director Division of International Protection, UNHCR; Mr. Fahad Abualnasr, Director General KAICIID; Ambassador Jalel Chelba, Head Civil Society Division, AU-CIDO, and Mr. Mohamed Ashmawey, President, Beyaz Eller.
The General Assembly approved the Plan of Action in the partnership’s three work-streams: Sustaining Peace (related to the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 16), Gender Equality and Empowerment (SDG 5), and Health (SDG 3). To follow-up on the Arigatou International 5th Forum, Ending Violence Against Children was approved as one of the four working priorities under the work-stream on Goal 16.
During the assembly, members discussed and approved the new governance structure, including by establishing a steering committee to guide the direction of the Partnership. Ms. Uribe was elected as a member of the committee.
Furthermore, Arigatou International presented the newly launched Consortium on Nurturing Spirituality to Prevent Violence in Early Childhood at the Open Forum on June 27th. The program of the Consortium was met with great interest by several stakeholders.
The International Partnership on Religion and Sustainable Development was established in February 2016 at the Berlin conference “Partners for Change – Religions and the 2030 Agenda”. It brings together members from all over the world in order to harness the positive impact of religion and values in sustainable development and humanitarian assistance. Membership in PaRD is voluntary and open to all governmental and intergovernmental entities, civil society and non-governmental organizations such as religious and value-driven organizations, secular NGOs, community initiatives, foundations, academic institutions and other relevant development organizations. To know more about PaRD http://www.partner-religion-development.org