Strategic Learning Exchange in New York: Religion, Gender & Youth Inclusion in Peace & Security

Over the past years, the international development, humanitarian, peace and security community have come to appreciate the impact of faith leaders and faith-based non-governmental organizations within communities. Considering that we, actors from various levels, operate with and within the same communities, it is judicious that we study and appreciate the resources that faith actors bring to the table.

The UN Interagency Task Force on Religion and Development, UN Women, UNFPA, together with the Network for Religious and Traditional Peacemakers are collaboratively organizing a series of Strategic Learning Exchanges (SLE). These SLEs are designed to collectively review and consider various means of outreach, including outreach with faith actors, and joint implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. Participants to the SLE include individuals from various UN offices highly vested in outreach with faith-based organizations and religious communities, seminaries, as well as young people, broader academia, and faith-based development and relief and peacebuilding entities.

Evolving from consultations and direct requests, the Peacemakers Network invites you to the forthcoming SLE focused on Religion, Gender, Youth, Peace and Security taking place from 30-31 October 2017. The SLE is hosted by UN Women and will be held following the UN Security Council open debate on Women, Peace and Security. While the first SLE focused on development and humanitarian frameworks, this second SLE will focus on SDG 16, UNSC resolutions 1325, and 2250. Both SLE’s intentionally bring forth the gender dimension of SDG number five.

The SLE will explore questions inter alia:

  • What are the links between religion, gender, youth and the SDG 16?
  • How do these links manifest in practical peace and security efforts at the intergovernmental, regional, national to community levels?
  • How can we strategically scale up partnerships that respond and contribute to the SDGs and human rights based priorities and indicators?

The event will use a peer-to-peer approach co-facilitated by the UN Task Force, UN Women and the Network members together with faith-based counterparts. Participants are therefore requested to bring case studies to the exchange. Pairing peer-to-peer learning with structured information sharing, participants will explore contemporary challenges and linkages between religion, gender, youth, peace and security work, and the added value of religious and faith organizations and communities. Participant-developed case studies will highlight opportunities and challenges of partnership between intergovernmental and faith-based organizations and innovative collaborative steps forward.

The focal points from the UN Interagency Task Force members are Martine Miller (martine.miller@peacemakersnetwork.org) and Cassandra Lawrence (clawrence@alamanacentre.org).

Given expressed interest and limited spaces, kindly send your RSVPs to Martine and Cassandra by Monday, 16th October.

Upon confirmation of you/your organization’s participation, an agenda will be forwarded to you along with further logistics information.

Please note: There are five internationally funded spaces based on need and direct selection. All other participants are self-funded.

For more information, see the concept note and the invitation.

See you in New York!

12.10.2017