News

How string helped Brazilian pastors understand domestic abuse

Monday, June 6th, 2016 by Terrie Robinson
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Mandy Marshall and Carolina Kuzaks-Cardenas of Side by Side member organisation Restored have just returned from Brazil where they were training Christian leaders on gender, gender based violence and what they can do to address it. The three day workshop, which was held at the Betel Bible Institute in Joao Pessoa (NE Brazil)’ was oversubscribed – an encouraging sign that there was clearly a thirst for information, knowledge and skills for the issue and for the church to address it....

Religion, Women’s Health and Rights: Points of Contention and Paths of Opportunity

Thursday, May 26th, 2016 by Terrie Robinson
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Religion, Women’s Health and Rights: Points of Contention and Paths of Opportunity Norad and UNFPA have together released a new report to inform UN Member States, civil society organizations, including Faith-based Organizations and the UN, among others, about the context and the nature of debates and different perspectives related to some particularly sensitive issues around sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights. The aim of the report ‘Religion, Women’s Health and Rights: Points of Contention and Paths of Opportunity’ is the...

Faith communities key actors in empowering, protecting girls and addressing GBV

Tuesday, May 17th, 2016 by Terrie Robinson
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This is the message of one of five evidence briefs developed by the Joint Learning Initiative on Faith and Local Communities (JLI/FLC) for the World Humanitarian Summit taking place in Istanbul 23 to 24 May this year. Each of the evidence briefs is linked to the five Core Commitments outlined in the UN Secretary General’s Report One Humanity, Shared Responsibility. Evidence brief 3 ‘Faith communities are key actors in empowering and protecting girls and addressing gender-based violence‘ relates to the Core Commitment C, ‘Leave No One Behind’, and...

Theological focus on re-thinking masculinities, Nicaragua

Friday, May 6th, 2016 by Terrie Robinson
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As part of its European Union Gender and Masculinities project in Nicaragua, Christian Aid has been working with its partner the Centro Intereclesial de Estudios Teologicos y Sociales (CIEETS), in collaboration with the country’s Evangelical University, to design and implement a course currently being shared with 30 religious leaders who represent a variety of church denominations in Nicaragua. The course, ‘Re-thinking Masculinities from a Gender Perspective: A Biblical-Theological Focus’, builds from the premise that churches have a role to play in...

Strong commitments made at Southern Africa forum on Faith and Gender

Thursday, April 28th, 2016 by Terrie Robinson
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Over 50 church leaders and representatives of Christian faith-based organisations from the countries of Southern Africa met in Harare 27 to 28 April to share experience and deliberate on a shared vision, commitment and plan of action for establishing a regional faith movement for gender justice. In a final communiqué, the participants recognised the significant role that religious institutions have to play in addressing gender inequality which has hindered human, social, political, economic and spiritual development, not just for women and girls, but also...

Declaration from first ever CSW Youth Forum

Wednesday, March 23rd, 2016 by Terrie Robinson
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March 2005A declaration from the first ever UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) Youth Forum has called for the 60th session of CSW to  adopt a series of gender-just and youth-centric policy recommendations into its own Agreed Conclusions. Among the recommendations are that CSW60 should: recognize that gender equality and the rights of all young women and girls cannot be achieved without the support, commitment, and action by all faith communities recognize that faith principles are sources of inspiration and motivation for...

World Council of Churches supports new campaign against sexual abuse

Thursday, March 17th, 2016 by Terrie Robinson
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The World Council of Churches’ commitment to child rights and gender justice is manifested by its support for Together for Girls’ Every Hour Matters campaign, which was launched earlier this week. The campaign aims to increase awareness of the critical importance of quickly accessing post-rape care. Read more: http://www.oikoumene.org/en/press-centre/news/wcc-supports-new-campaign-against-sexual-abuse

RESTORED – Ending Domestic Abuse Church pack

Tuesday, March 8th, 2016 by Side By Side
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New Pack Helps Churches to Address Domestic Abuse 1 in 4 women in the UK experience domestic abuse – including women in churches. Christian charity Restored aims to end domestic abuse by partnering with churches and Christian organisations. This International Women’s Day (8th March), the charity is calling on churches to do more to help address domestic abuse, so that more women can live free of abuse and the fear of abuse, and achieve their full God-given potential. To help churches take action, Restored has developed and published a...

Women’s World Day of Prayer

Friday, March 4th, 2016 by Side By Side
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As the sun rises on 4 March the first country will celebrate Women’s World Day of Prayer with and for our sisters from Cuba, on the theme of “Receive children. Receive me” Mark 10:13-16. An estimated 3 million people in over 170 countries will observe the day, using an order of service written by Christian women in Cuba and translated into over 60 languages and 1000 dialects. In the British Isles alone over 6,000 services will be held. The day...

Irish Consortium peer learning event on faith leaders, social norms and GBV

Wednesday, March 2nd, 2016 by Terrie Robinson
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Peter Byrne, Church & Community Manager at Christian Aid, reports on the Irish Consortium on Gender Based Violence Peer Learning Event held on 26 January 2016 The topic for this peer learning event was ‘Engaging Faith Leaders to change social norms that promote or condone Gender Based Violence’. The event was an excellent opportunity for participants to share information and lessons not only from programming processes, but also from their experience with faith leaders in that regard. It also usefully...

Faith leaders gathered in Nairobi for East Africa symposium for gender justice

Wednesday, January 13th, 2016 by Terrie Robinson
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Dignity, equal opportunities, equal participation, harmony, strong families … these were recurring words during a two-day regional workshop for East African faith leaders that took place in Nairobi, 23 – 24 November 2015. The purpose of the workshop, held at the Desmond Tutu Conference Centre (affiliate of the All Africa Conference of Churches) was to deliberate on the various ways in which faith leaders can effectively lead and engage in conversations and dialogues that address barriers to gender justice. Participants...

Day 3: Latin America & the Caribbean symposium

Thursday, November 26th, 2015 by Side By Side
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On the last day we kicked off with a reflection on the power of water, with the help of Mayan spirituality.  The imagery of water, soft and flexible but which can carve rock and change the landscape, helped the group focus on the final step of the Symposium, the creation of an action plan to implement the commitments expressed by the group.   Some of the actions proposed included using existing experience, learning, capacity and networks: consolidating and strengthening them;...

Day 2: Latin America & the Caribbean symposium

Thursday, November 5th, 2015 by Side By Side
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Theme of the day: Potential, barriers and resources to achieve gender justice within faith communities   On the second day of our LAC Symposium, we opened with prayer and song from the ecumenical community of Iona, brought to us by representatives of the Church of Scotland, Fiona Buchanan and Elspeth Davies from the Episcopal Church of Scotland.   Learning from each other   During the first session of the day we looked at the direct experience of working on gender...

Foundation of the Latin America & the Caribbean region

Thursday, November 5th, 2015 by Side By Side
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Reviving a tree so it still gives beautiful fruits   Representatives of faith leaders and organisations across Latin America and the Caribbean are meeting in Sao Paulo, Brazil from 26 to 28 October, to discuss the context, potentialities and challenges for faith-led gender justice in the region. People came from across the LAC region and from the UK too, representing national, regional and international organisations such as WCC, AA, CREAS, CA, NCA and CLAI.  People came in representation of a...

Side by Side founding symposium

Thursday, November 5th, 2015 by Side By Side
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In March 2015, representatives from seventeen international faith-based organisations, ecumenical networks and faith institutions met in London to discuss the case for strengthening the global faith movement for gender justice. It was agreed that the moral and theological rationale for gender justice needs to be clearly articulated and that our gender should be seen as a gift and source of life. The overwhelming majority of the world’s poor are women. We live in gender inequitable societies which have stunted human...

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