UN Habitat invites you to join in UN Habitat’s World Urban Campaign’s faith initiative, Faith and the Path Towards a Better Quality of City Life. UN Habitat together with World Evangelical Alliance (WEA), the Urban Shalom Society (USS) and a number of local partners are running a series of faith based Urban Thinkers Campuses, aimed at encouraging faith communities to work together on the creation of cities and urban environments where all can flourish.
Faith and the Path Towards a Better Quality of City Life, aims to;
Prepare communities of faith for active engagement at the next World Urban Forum (WUF 10) to be held in Abu Dhabi, February 7th – 13th 2020.
Engage academics, practitioners and leaders from different faith perspectives in conversation and action towards a better quality of life in cities.
Gather data (stories, knowledge, learnings) from different faith perspectives around engagement with and transformation of the city
Develop cooperative strategies for faith communities to work together, with others for the development of cities where all can flourish.
This faith based initiative began in 2017 with the first ever faith specific Urban Thinkers Campus (UTC), held in Singapore. Whilst small in overall representation the campus gave participants the opportunity to learn from different perspectives on the role faith communities play in the betterment of cities. Insights from this event were fed in the World Urban Forum (WUF 9) held in Kuala Lumpur in 2018. At the same time as this global event and interacting with it, a group of faith based urban academics were meeting to look at what different faith perspectives offer into disciplines connected with urban development.
All of these gatherings were motivated by Habitat 3 in Quito, 2016. The Habitat conferences happen every 20 years and are a United Nations initiative bringing together city influencers from around the world. Towards the end of the conference in Quito the New Urban Agenda (NUA) was ratified. This document, accepted by the majority of the world’s leaders sets out the global desire for cities. That cites are to be “just, safe, healthy, accessible, affordable, resilient and sustainable . . . [and] foster prosperity and quality of life for all.” Many of the tenets or values that we hold as faith communities are reflected in this statement as well as right throughout the NUA. However, the representation of faith communities in city and social development conversations has tended to be extremely low.
The input of people of faith into city and social developments has never been more urgent. As you would be aware the world is experiencing rapid urbanisation with over half the population currently living in an urban context. This is set to rise steeply in the next thirty years to a point where over two-thirds of the global population will reside in a city. A core question we must ask from a faith perspective is what will be the quality of life for those residing in the world’s growing cities?
The faith based UTC initiative is a great opportunity to come together with people from your own faith and meet with others from different faith perspectives who share your heart for the creation of cities where all can flourish.
How to be involved – We will be holding UTC’s in Kenya, Africa; Melbourne, Australia; Salt Lake City, USA; Oxford, England; South America and Vietnam.
To register for the Melbourne Urban Thinkers Campus, visit Eventbrite
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