Building bridges to reduce divisions – JISRA

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Interreligious tensions and religious violence

While Freedom of Religion and Belief (FoRB) is a fundamental human right enshrined in international treaties and constitutional provisions in most countries, the actual practice of FoRB encounters
many challenges. Oftentimes, people do not experience freedom of religion in practice – i.e. through discrimination in access to services, interreligious tensions and religious violence.

Our strategy

  • Intrareligious: We challenge deeply rooted harmful norms and practices within religious traditions that limit women’s rights, youth participation and peaceful coexistence with others
  • Interreligious: We encourage and facilitate interaction between communities.
  • Extrareligious: We connect local realities with national and international policy levels.

Our answer

JISRA stands for “Joint Initiative for Strategic Religious Action” and is a partnership consisting of 50 civil society organisations. Jisr’ is the Arabic word for ‘bridge’ and that is exactly what the programme envisions to do: building bridges across religious divides. This international and interfaith partnership implements a five-year programme (2021-2025) to promote peaceful and just societies where all enjoy Freedom of Religion and Belief.

JISRA leverages positive forces within and between religious communities for more peaceful and inclusive societies. The aim is to do this as much as possible by stimulating interfaith cooperation and thereby showing that different religious traditions can come together in their vision for a better and fairer society. Special attention will be paid to advancing women’s rights and gender equality and the empowerment of women and girls as well as youth and women’s participation.