Dialogue Knowledge Hub

FAITH4SDGs OPENING LAUNCH: Faith for Sustainable Development: Advocating Care for People and Planet

Online Zoom Application
03:00 pm
22 October 2020
H.E. Faisal Bin Abdulrahman Bin Muaammar
Ms Yvonne Helle
Dr. Iyad Abumoghli
Dr. Azza Karam
Ms. Esther Lehmann-Sow
H.E. Dr. Bandar Hajjar
Launch of the #Faith4SDGs Project

In 2015, the 193 members of the United Nations made a united promise: to make sure that every man, woman and child has access to the basic necessities of life: education, clean water, equality, food, jobs and health care.

Agenda 2030 of the United Nations, and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) represent a universal commitment to shared development, based on understanding, tolerance, and mutual respect.

Today, with just 10 years left to achieve Agenda 2030 and a global pandemic which is causing devastating setbacks to the poor and the most vulnerable, we are at a turning point. Govern-ments have a very important role to play but stand a better chance of achieving these goals if the contributions of faith-based organizations are recognised and harnessed.

To highlight the importance of such efforts in achieving these goals, KAICIID is releasing the #Faith4SDGs project, a digital storytelling series that reveals the enormous contributions faith-based organizations around the world are making to help implement the SDGs.

Together with guests from the United Nations and experts from the field of sustainable development, this panel will discuss the approaches of faith-based organizations and religious actors in promoting the global goals. How are faith communities collaborating with political decision-makers to develop and implement policies on issues such as quality education, gender equality and access to decent work? Which gaps could be better addressed if religious actors were regularly included in multilateral efforts for development and aid? How are faith communities uniquely positioned to manage the response to health and environmental crises? How can these communities leverage their impact on educational structures to foster equal opportunities?



VISIT #FAITH4SDGs PROJECT PAGE: https://www.kaiciid.org/faith4sdgs

KAICIID Secretary General
H.E. Faisal Bin Abdulrahman Bin Muaammar

Secretary General, KAICIID

H.E. Faisal bin Muaammar is currently founder and Secretary General of two organizations focused on enhancing understanding and knowledge: the International Dialogue Centre (KAICIID) in Vienna, and the King Abdulaziz Public Library (KAPL) in Riyadh. H.E. Mr. Bin Muaammar is also Advisor to the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques. His senior positions in the Saudi Arabian administration have included Vice Minister of Education, Advisor to the Royal Court of then-Crown Prince Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, and Deputy of the National Guard for Cultural and Educational Affairs.

Ms Yvonne Helle

Special Representative to UNDP’s Programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People (PAPP)

Ms Yvonne Helle has been appoitned as a Special Representative to UNDP’s Programme of Assistance to the Palestinian People (PAPP) in 2019. Prior to her appointment, Yvonne temporarily managed the Sub Regional Facility for the Syrian Crisis in Amman. She her UN career in 1992 as a Dutch JPO in UNIFEM’s Regional office in Mexico, was then reassigned to UNDP Laos, initially as a JPO and then as Assistant Resident Representative for Governance. She was subsequently selected into UNDP’s first LEAD programme in 2001, and was assigned to the Bureau for Resources and Strategic Partnerships, as partnerships advisor, working on a range of donor relations. She then served as Deputy Resident Representative in Morocco from 2004-2008. After another donor relations assignment as Team Leader of the Division for Resources Mobilization, Yvonne was nominated as UNDP Country Director in Sudan in 2013. She subsequently organized the Ebola Recovery Conference for the Secretary General and was then reassigned as Senior Country Director in Haiti in August 2015, a post she occupied until early 2019. A Dutch national, Yvonne holds an MSc from the Agricultural University of Wageningen in the Netherlands.

Dr. Iyad Abumoghli

Director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Faith for Earth Initiative

Dr. Iyad Abumoghli is the director of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Faith for Earth Initiative. He leads the regional team of UNEP West Asia in identifying and assessing relevant needs, priorities, trends, developments, and policies at the national, sub-regional, and regional levels, in order to incorporate them into UNEP policy and programme development. Identify and build/strengthen strategic partnerships at all levels, both with West Asia Governments, the private sector and civil society at large to mobilize support for sound environmental action. Represent the Organization at international, regional, inter-agency meetings, seminars and conferences. Dr. Abumoghli has senior level expertise in sustainable development, environment, innovation and knowledge management. Strong knowledge in strategic planning, visioning and programme implementation and oversight working with local, national, regional and international organizations. He has twenty seven years of experience with the private sector, scientific and international organizations on sustainable development, water resources management and Environmental Impact Assessment. Before joining UNEP, he served 14 years in UNDP in a number of positions starting as Assistant Resident Representative for programmes in Jordan, then as the Global Practice Manager of the Energy and Environment Group in New York. He worked as a Senior Policy Adviser on Environment and as a Knowledge Management Team Leader and head of Innovation unit at the Regional Center in Cairo. Having served in a diverse development domains, Iyad adopts a holistic multi-sectoral approach to development ensuring cross-thematic integration with internal and external partners.

Dr. Azza Karam

Secretary General of Religions for Peace

Prof. Dr. Azza Karam serves as the Secretary General of Religions for Peace – the largest multi-religious leadership platform with 90 national and 6 regional Interreligious Councils. She also holds a Professorship of Religion and Development at the Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam, in The Netherlands – of which she is a citizen. She served as a Senior Advisor on Culture, at the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA); and as Coordinator/Chair of the United Nations Inter-Agency Task Force on Religion and Development; where she coordinated engagement with members of a Global Interfaith Network for Population and Development with over 600 faith-based organizations from all regions of the world, representing all religions and interreligious affiliation. She is the Lead Facilitator for the United Nations’ Strategic Learning Exchanges on Religion, Development and Diplomacy, building on a legacy of serving as a trainer cum facilitator of inter-cultural leadership and management in the Arab region as well as Europe and Central Asia. Professor Karam has served in different positions in the United Nations since 2004, as well as other intergovernmental and non-governmental organizations since the early 1990s, such as International IDEA, and Religions for Peace. Simultaneously, she lectured in various academic institutions in Europe, in North America (including the United States Military Academy/West Point), Africa and the Middle East.

Ms. Esther Lehmann-Sow

Global Director of Faith & Development at World Vision International

With more than 25 years of field experience working with vulnerable communities and children, Ms. Esther Lehmann-Sow has managed country programme offices, led major emergency responses and directed World Vision’s work across West and Central Africa. Esther is passionate about the holistic well-being of children, and the role of faith communities in realising this. She has worked in a number of multi-faith settings to test, refine and scale approaches that engage faith communities to promote positive values and behaviours for the most vulnerable children. In her current role, Esther leads World Vision’s global work to drive positive change for the world’s most vulnerable children by boldly and humbly living out the organisation’s Christian faith and calling, and by joining hands with diverse partners. Esther is a German citizen, widowed, mother of three, and currently lives in Dakar, Senegal.

H.E. Dr. Bandar Hajjar

President of the Islamic Development Bank Group

Dr. Bandar Hajjar assumed presidency of the Islamic Development Bank (IsDB) Group on October 1, 2016. Through his strategic programme, the IsDB is empowering people for a sustainable future by building global partnerships and driving innovation through a value chain approach to development. Dr. Bandar is also consolidating the bank’s position as a global leader in Islamic finance and the largest issuers of Sukuk. Dr. Bandar Hajjar is also the current chairperson of the Heads of MDBs Meetings for the year 2020 which is a regional and international dialogue platform of eleven multilateral development banks and the International Monetary Fund. H.E. Dr. Bandar Hajjar holds a bachelor's degree with First-Class Honours in Economics and Political Sciences from King Saud University, Riyadh, a master's degree in Economics from Indiana University, USA, and a PhD in Economics from Loughborough University in the United Kingdom.

Nayana Jayarajan, Deputy Director of Communication, KAICIID

Nayana Jayarajan has over a decade of experience in journalism, and in strategic communications for intergovernmental and nongovernmental organizations. For over four years, she established and managed communications for the International Press Institute, where she also provided subject expertise on issues of freedom of expression online and in social media, and on press freedom issues in South Asia. She has also managed media outreach and external communications for the Nabucco project, an intergovernmental European energy initiative. She has previously worked as a reporter with India’s national newspaper, the Hindu, and as a news producer for global news network CNBC, and managed advocacy and outreach for a global climate change initiative for Greenpeace, focusing on driving policy change through communications.

Her work as a journalist and researcher has been cited and published by international media organizations including Reuters, AFP, The Hindu (India), The New Indian Express, GlobalPost, and the Guardian (UK). At KAICIID, Nayana leads the team responsible for communicating the work of the organization to the wider world through website, social media, publications, multimedia, and other means. Jayarajan has a degree in Global Studies and International Relations from the University of Vienna, where she was an EU-funded scholar. She also has a master’s degree in broadcast journalism from the Asian College of Journalism.