Humanitarian Assistance Webcast: The Contemporary Role of Faith-based Aid

Release Date: 
Thursday, June 19, 2014

Faith-based humanitarian organizations have played a central role in responding to humanitarian needs for centuries. While deeply rooted in principles of faith and charity, these organizations also represent a community of influential donors. As such, they are uniquely positioned to lead programs in assistance, protection, and advocacy in complex humanitarian environments. Furthermore, given their continued investment and presence in local communities, faith-based organizations are often the first to respond to humanitarian disasters or conflict.This webcast will discuss the role of faith-based humanitarian organizations and the operational challenges faced by both faith-based and secular humanitarian organizations in their work.


Through discussions with experts and practitioners, the webcast will explore the following questions:

  • What is the relationship between the core principles and standards for humanitarian assistance and protection, and those of faith-motivated aid?
  • What are the opportunities for strategic cooperation between faith-based and secular humanitarian organizations?
  • How can faith or religious affiliation can be a barrier or asset to assistance work? Is the provision of some forms of assistance hindered by some beliefs or faith cultures and, if so, how can these barriers be overcome?

Expert Commentators:

  • Alastair Ager, Director, Doctorate of Public Health in Leadership in Global Health and Humanitarian Systems, Columbia University
  • Atef Dalgamouni, Chief of Mission in Jordan, Qatar Red Crescent
  • Jason Knapp, Humanitarian and Protection Advisor, Church World Service

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