The MDGs after the Crisis. Global Monitoring Report 2010. Washington, DC: World Bank.
-Religious leaders and FBOs have long been engaged in global health-formalized collaboration through PEPFAR and the HIV/AIDS epidemic has opened the doors for new partnerships.
Faith, family planning and family well-being: Maximizing effectiveness through collaboration
Faith, family planning and family well-being: Maximizing effectivenessthrough collaborationInstitute for Reproductive HealthGeorgetown University EXPANDING FAMILY PLANNING OPTIONS
Slow progress on MDG 5“The MDG for maternal mortality has been reported as the most off-track of all of the goals.”
Who makes up the faith sector?Center for Interfaith Action (CIFA), “Many Faiths, Common Action: Increasingthe Impact of the Faith Sector on Health and Development”
Increasing cross-sectorcollaboration:FBOs engage in achieving MDGs HIV/AIDS Religions for Peace Malaria CIFA Child survival UNICEF Maternal Health?
Initiative Methodology Literature Review In-depth InterviewsPhase 1 Next Data Analysis Steps? (ATLAS.ti) Consultatio n FurtherPhase 2 Analysis Report
Study Objectives• Explore the role of the faith sector in improving maternal and child health (MCH) through family planning;• Describe unique contributions of the faith sector in MCH and family well-being;• Understand the current relationships between FBOs and secular organizations working in MCH and family planning; and• Identify areas/opportunities for increased collaboration and more effective partnerships around family planning. • Identify challenges to increased collaboration and assess potential for
Respondents were from: Muslim • Faith-based organizations Protestant Christian • Churches Orthodox Christian Catholic • Non-governmental Interfaith organizations • International aid agencies • Governments Afghanistan Mali Ethiopia Kenya
Key Informants Global Kenya Mali EthiopiaSecular Extending Services Delivery (ESD) GTZ Malian Parliament UNFPA Project Pathfinder/APHIA2 ATN + Project Packard Foundation CORE Group Marie Stopes Kenya Health Policy Initiative USAID MCHIP Inter-Religious Council of Association for Support Pathfinder Futures Group Kenya of Population Activity Engender Health Population Action International (PAI) USAID Development (ASDAP) Ipas CEDPA National Coordinating Malian Association for the Marie Stopes Ethiopia Family Health International (FHI) Agency for Population Promotion and Protection Integrated Family Health Planning Engender Health and of the Family (AMPPF), Consortium of Reproductive Gates Foundation Development (NCAPD) IPPF affiliate Health Associations World Bank UNICEF Ethiopian Interfaith Forum for WHO UNFPA Development Dialogue & Action USAID Family Guidance Association of UNFPA Ethiopia Center for Inter-Faith Action (CIFA) DKTChristian Christian Connections for Christian Health Christian & Muslim Ethiopian Orthodox Church – International Association of Kenya Alliance of Mali Development and Inter-Church Health (CCIH) (CHAK) Aid Commission Adventist Development and Relief Kenya Episcopal ADRA-Ethiopia Agency (ADRA) Conference (KEC) Christian Relief and Development CARITAS Catholic Diocese of Association Catholic Medical Mission board Nairobi Ethiopian Evangelical Church (CMMB) Presbyterian Church of Mekane Yesus – Development Catholic Relief Services (CRS) East Africa (PCEA) and Social Services Commission IMA World Health Meserete Kristos Church Relief Tearfund and Development Association United Methodist Church - General CRS-Ethiopia Board of Church & Society (GBCS) Food for the Hungry World VisionMuslim Islamic Relief Muslim Charitable Islamic Network for Islamic Affairs Supreme Society Population Development Council – Ethiopian Muslims SUPKEM, Islamic (RIPOD) Development Agency Society, RISE, Haut Conseil Family Resource Center Islamique Federation of Muslim Women in Mali (UNAFEM)
Findings Family planning is consistent with both Christian and Muslim values―Whether a Muslim is liberal orconservative, their core values comefrom the Koran and religious teaching.Islam supports the health of the mother.If we can show that the mother’s healthis improved by timing and spacing ofpregnancy, we can make the case. Wetalk to Muslims in our own language.‖–Global Muslim FBO ―Sometimes there is misconception, the secular world may just present the attitude that the church does not support family planning. This is very misleading because if there is any institution that promotes the family unit, it is the church.‖ - Country-based Protestant, Christian FBO
Findings FBOs and religious leaders are engaged in FP-related activitiesNumber of respondents engaged in FP-related activities 30 Country-based 20 Muslim Organizations 10 Country-based Christian 0 Organizations Global FBOs
Findings Family planning messages are important―Our mandate is to promote health. The churchwork in the family is a very key component that wedeal with. Secondly, we do recognize that the healthof the mother and the health of the child literallyreflect the health of the population. So we do have a Commonlot of programs that focus on the health of the ground aroundmother and the child like family planning.‖–Country-based Christian, Protestant FBO health―The key message is that when you space the childrenyou give the children a better opportunity to grow uphealthy. You give them a better opportunity to accesseducation. So this is really the key message: thatspacing has a direct impact on the health of the childrenand the health of the mother.– Country-based Donor
Findings Family planning messages are important―During premarital counseling, we encourage couples to do child spacing and not havea number of children that they cannot afford to maintain. We also do an exegesis of theGenesis story where God is telling man to go and fill the earth. It is filling the earth, notfilling the house. Because if you are filling the house, it means you have many childrenin one house and cannot afford to maintain them. But if you are filling the earth, itmeans you plus other people—it is not solely your duty to fill it. So we encourage familyplanning.‖ –Country-based Christian, Protestant FBO―It is rare to find a woman in a health center accompaniedby her husband! It’s the woman who comes, accompanied Family Values,by her children. For a year now, we have been talking tomen about coming with their wives. We show the men that Responsibility,even the imams accompany their wives. We persuaded & Malethem that they should accompany their wives to the health Involvementcenters for prenatal consultations and vaccinations. Wehave found there are men who are not negative, they don’trefuse family planning.‖ –Country-based Muslim FBO“Connecting to family values and putting family planning into the larger context of thefamily, rather than simply as the spacing of children, is very, very important. And thewhole area of being able to help -- hopefully, it’s spouses but also others who areinvolved in sexual relationships -- to communicate with each other about these valuesand not just see this as a mechanical action. I think that’s very important and needs tobe spoken about much more in the international community.‖
Findings Family planning messages are important―We’re trying to avoid controversial statements like familyplanning. There’s not a big difference between familyplanning and child spacing though. Child-spacing is planningwhen you want to be pregnant and when you want to space.It’s similar. But they have different connotations, details,implications and methods. There are terms that are morecommunity friendly - like child spacing, healthy living - theseare terms which are more acceptable than the term familyplanning. In my community, family planning unfortunatelyamounts to birth control which is against Islamic teaching. – Words MatterCountry-based Muslim FBO―I think there is an issue of language. The moment you talkabout family planning, there are still so many, even in theU.S., who think abortion, a lot of it is misperceptions andignorance. From my perspective, what helps us is we don’tdo anything without involving the local community. Thepartnership building and listening to our partners isextremely important. That dialogue informs us how to moveforward.‖ – Global Christian, Protestant FBO
FindingsThe messenger is important―The tendency is that if a Christian comes and talks tome about family planning, I will think that he is talking tome about his religion - and he’s against my religion. Thatis really a big problem. So it is important who gives theinformation. The information should come from the rightpeople - people who speak their language, who knowtheir nature, who understand them, who can identify. Themoment you come with somebody else, the response is,Hey, this guy is teaching about this religion. I’m not one.Full stop. That door is closed.‖ – Country-based MuslimFBO
Phase 2: Consultation on Faith,Family Planning and Family Well-being
Consultation Objectives• Recognize the faith sector’s strengths and contributions to global MCH, as well as understand issues that remain to be addressed in increasing partnerships• Recognize of the importance of family planning and the variety of approaches to improving MCH and the well-being of families• Commit to support family planning and engage in effective partnerships that lead to improved MCH • Collect additional information to enrich study findings
Organizational AttendanceAdventist Development and Relief Islamic Relief Agency (ADRA) Johns Hopkins UniversityCatholic Medical Mission Board (CMMB) MCHIP/Flex FundCatholic Relief Services Management Sciences for HealthChristian Connections for International Muhammadiyah Health (CCIH) Muslim Womens LeagueCenter for Interfaith Action on Global National Campaign to Prevent Teen Poverty (CIFA) PregnancyCEDPA Population Action InternationalCORE Group Pathfinder International Samaritans PurseDept. of Health and Human Services TearFundDSW – German World Population Fund UNFPAEpiscopal Relief and Development United Methodist ChurchExtending Services Delivery Project United Nations FoundationFutures Group USAIDGeorgetown University US Conference of Catholic BishopsGlobal Health Council World Faiths Development DialogueIMA world Health World BankInstitute for Youth Development World Vision
Challenges• Mutual mistrust and suspicion • Organizations holding false stereotypes and assumptions • Perceptions of Western or foreign agendas inhibit projects• Philosophical differences in project approaches • Muslim concerns regarding FP methods that limit children • Catholic concerns regarding artificial contraception • Hesitancy of FBOs to provide FP to unmarried youth• FBOs and religious leaders used instrumentally by other agencies• Antiquated project approaches • Short project cycles that do not allow time for relationship building and collaborative design • Projects are not integrated • Low funding levels for FBOs • Donor desire to work with same partners• Lack of capacity of FBOs in technical areas, program management, and monitoring and evaluation
Moving Forward• Foster safe spaces for continued dialogue • Regional consultations for public and faith sectors • Interfaith consultations• Pursue opportunities for capacity building when working with FBOs or religious leaders• Be attentive to message development and who delivers the message• Recognize the necessity of developing trust and clear expectations among partners • Allocate time in the work plan for developing and maintaining the partnership