Promotion of inclusive and sustainable development through engagement with Religious Leaders
What is this project about?
This project aims at increasing the capacity of religious leaders to contribute to a positive social dialogue on human rights and inclusive development in all aspects of life through:
- Providing a platform for religious leaders to explore developmental and human rights challenges in Kuwait and develop a more comprehensive understanding of the need to address these challenges in all aspects of life, i.e environment, human development, health....
- Increasing awareness of the inherent harmony between the core principles of religion and the human rights based approach to development.
- Identification of a core group of religious leaders committed to promoting inclusive development principles and build their capacity to serve as community educators among their peers and the public.
- Production of materials including a training manual, documentary film and educational toolkits on the issues to be covered in the training sessions.
- Assessment of the knowledge, attitudes and interests of key religious leaders: A mapping exercise will be conducted by the UNDP Consultant to assess the current knowledge, attitudes and interests of 50 to 100 religious leaders representing different segments, geographical and denominational sectors of the Kuwaiti religious leaders’ community. This exercise will also help in identifying the best candidates for the technical meeting that will follow.
- Technical meeting: A three day meeting will be held with the participation of 30 and 40 religious leaders, including key leaders identified by the Kuwaiti Ministry of Awqaf and Islamic Affairs and national partners alongside regional resource people such as religious leaders from other Arab countries and development/human rights experts. The meeting will aim to build the leadership capacity of the participants, introduce them to a deeper knowledge of the Country Development Plan and ensure their commitment to achieving the MDGs in Kuwait as well as identify the priority issues to be addressed and agree a blueprint of the content and participants of future activities.
- First-stage training workshops: Two initial workshops, each of four days’ duration, will be conducted to raise the awareness of approximately 70 – 100 religious leaders on the developmental challenges in Kuwait. There will be a space of approximately three to four months between the first and second workshops.
- Monitoring of response to first-stage workshops: As a result of these activities, it is anticipated that their increased awareness will be reflected in the content of sermons, faith-based organisations’ activities, articles, media communications, breakthrough initiatives etc. The output of the participants will be monitored as a desk review and based on analysis of this enhanced discourse, 30 trainers of trainers will be identified.
- Training of trainers workshop: Thirty or more religious leaders will be provided with training for four days to equip them to conduct follow-on training workshops for their peers.
- Religious leaders training: Over a period of three years, 20 workshops of three days’ duration will be conducted with a total participation of 70 religious leaders. The workshops will have a thematic emphasis e.g. poverty, migration, women rights, education, etc. and they may be tailored to emerging or topical issues in Kuwaiti society.
- Religious media workshop: A special workshop for 30 religious leaders active in the media will be conducted.
- Production of Manual (s): A training manual and a documentary that contain the basic messages and lessons reached from the technical meeting and first group of training workshops will be produced. These materials will be designed to ensure a participatory and interactive approach in leadership development and will also serve as advocacy and follow up activities material.
What have we accomplished so far?
Transformational leadership approaches, methods, as well as scientific and practical solutions were used in order to meet the challenges of development in the State of Kuwait:
- Mapping Exercise and a Technical Meeting: were conducted to assess the knowledge, attitudes and interests of 100 religious leaders representing different segments, geographical and denominational sectors of the Kuwaiti religious leaders’ community which resulted in the identification of 5 developmental priorities for Religious Leaders in Kuwait:
1) Social Coherence
2) Women Rights
3) Environmental sustainability (including energy and water)
4) Youth Challenges
5) Religious Extremism.
- Religious Media workshop: A leadership capacity building workshop for 40 media religious leaders was conducted and they have been trained on how to mainstream developmental challenges into media messages.
- Four Women Religious Leaders workshops for two groups of 100 women each were conducted as well as 3 workshops for men of 100 each.
- Three TOT for Women Religious Leaders and one ToT for men, of 30 persons each chosen from the first group of trainings to equip them to conduct follow-on training workshops for their peers.
- Production of knowledge management products in the form of a manual and a documentary film that contains the basic messages and lessons learned from the technical meeting and training workshops. The training manual was designed to ensure a participatory and interactive approach in leadership development and will also serve as an advocacy and follow up activities material.
- The results of the training sessions on leadership are 81 breakthrough initiatives, with specific focus on the five priorities identified. 31 of the initiatives were implemented in the field and one initiative was officially adopted by the Ministry of Awqaf and incorporated in their official work plan.
Who finances this project?
Government of Kuwait