”Advocacy” speaks for the oppressed

Maasai äidit_PaulaKonttinen

A book consisting of a collection of articles written by experts, Advocacy – a reflection on a human rights-based approach from a faith-based perspective, which has been edited by Hannu Happonen and Hannah Lambert, offers dozens of viewpoints into the discussion on human rights issues.

Advocating for culture, Olli Pitkänen provides some background: – In Africa, the churches have a significant role in the society.  We are encouraging the churches to become active in advocating for the more vulnerable, such as people with HIV, children, environment, disabled and women.

Blurring of the concept of the value of the human being is a global phenomenon.  Advocacy – a reflection on a human rights-based approach from a faith-based perspective is unique both in its treatment of the topic from various angles as well as acting as an opener for a discussion.  This is the first time a text like this, which provides instruction on the Christian influence and the church impact, has been published.  

According to the experts in Advocacy – a reflection on a human rights-based approach from a faith-based perspective, edited by Happonen and Lambert, churches are the influencers in their communities: ”The church is a part of community and is itself a community”, Carita Murtonen encapsulates (p. 58).  The churches are in a significant position and have power over the attitudes and well-being of individuals, and through them, to the entire community.  The book provides a practical and theological basis for the discussion on human rights from a Christian perspective and encourages the churches to become active in advocating for the more vulnerable.

Advocacy – a reflection on a human rights-based approach from a faith-based perspective is founded on the years of experience and work of Fida International, especially in Africa.  The writers are special experts in their fields, and they discuss in the 25 articles the need for advocacy, for example, in agriculture, violence towards women, in the lives of child victims and child soldiers, human trafficking, in the significance of maintaining one’s own culture and rehabilitating a corrupt society.

Hannu Happonen is an expert on human rights issues in East Africa.  Hannah Lambert is a freelance editor.  Olli Pitkänen is the Director for Development Cooperation at Fida International.  Carita Murtonen works in Southeast Asia as the Fida International Disability Expert.

Hannu Happonen and Hannah Lambert (Ed.). Advocacy – a reflection on a human rights-based approach from a faith-based perspective . Fida International 2012, 153 p. The publication of the book has been supported from the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland funds for partnership organisations.

For further information, please contact Olli Pitkänen, Director for Development Cooperation at Fida International, mobile +358 40 729 2285
Text: Tiipi Jokinen

31.5.13