Faith-based Communities (FBCs) may be the first port of call for local people in a crisis, and often continue to provide HIV-services for the duration. Humanitarian agencies, however, may overlook the potential of FBCs when it comes to HIV responses in emergencies, amid concerns that FBCs may push a religious agenda, and that they lack the skills and capacity to mount an effective response. This Project Briefing draws on lessons learned in Democratic Republic of Congo, South Sudan and Kenya, arguing that humanitarian actors need to help FBCs build up their emergency capacity on HIV services. Equally, to work effectively with humanitarian actors, FBCs should address stigma, theological misunderstandings and discrimination.
Fiona Samuels, Rena Geibel, Fiona Perry