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G E O R G E T O W N U N I V E R S I T Y
Faith-Inspired Organizations and Global Development Policy
A Background Review “Mapping” Social and Economic Development Work in Southeast Asia
A project of the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs and the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University
Supported by the Henry R. Luce Initiative on Religion and International Affairs
BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS
Luce/SFS Program on Religion and International Affairs
The Luce/SFS Program on Religion and International Affairs has been exploring the intersection of faith, world politics and diplomacy since September 2006. A collaboration between the Henry Luce Foundation and the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service (SFS) and Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs at Georgetown University, the Luce/SFS Program initially focused on two issue areas: Religion and Global Development and Religion and US Foreign Policy. A follow-on award from the Luce Foundation in November 2008 has enabled the continued growth of both program areas and the addition of two more: Government Outreach and an online Religion and International Affairs Network.
The Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service
Founded in 1919 to educate students and prepare them for leadership roles in international affairs, the School of Foreign Service conducts an undergraduate program for over 1,300 students and graduate programs at the Master’s level for more than 700 students. Under the leadership of Dean Robert L. Gallucci, the School houses more than a dozen regional and functional programs that offer courses, conduct research, host events, and contribute to the intellectual development of the field of international affairs. In 2007, a survey of faculty published in Foreign Policy ranked Georgetown University as #1 in Master’s degree programs in international relations.
The Berkley Center
The Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs at Georgetown University, created within the Office of the President in March 2006, is dedicated to the interdisciplinary study of religion and the promotion of interreligious understanding. Through research, teaching, and service, the Center examines religion as it relates to global challenges of international diplomacy, democracy and human rights, and economic and social development. Two premises guide the Center’s work: that deeper knowledge of religion’s global role is critical to address these challenges, and that the open engagement of religious traditions with one another and with the wider society can promote peace. Thomas Banchoff, associate professor in the Department of Government and the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service, is the Center’s founding director.
The World Faiths Development Dialogue
The World Faiths Development Dialogue (WFDD) bridges between the worlds of faith and secular development. Established by James D. Wolfensohn, then President of the World Bank, and Lord Carey of Clifton, then Archbishop of Canterbury, WFDD responded to the opportunities and concerns of many faith leaders who saw untapped potential for partnerships. Based in Washington, D.C., WFDD supports dialogue, fosters communities of practice, and promotes understanding on religion and development, with formal relationships with the World Bank, Georgetown University, and many faith-inspired institutions.
The Asia Faiths Development Dialogue
The Asia Faiths Development Dialogue (AFDD), launched in 2006, seeks to strengthen faith by mobilizing support of the different faith groups in Cambodia and in Southeast Asia and the broader Asia-Pacific region, to work for peace, development and harmony in order to achieve a peaceful coexistence of the people in Asia and beyond. AFDD fosters constructive inter-faiths dialogue through broad participation in order to promote trust-building and reconciliation as well as societal development. By bridging the gaps among the different faith groups at the national, regional, and international levels, AFDD strives to ameliorate the lives of diverse people around the world.
Copyright 2010, Georgetown University.
About this Report
This report was prepared as part of the Berkley Center’s global “mapping” of the work of faith-inspired organizations worldwide. The report specifically served as background for a consultation on faithinspired organizations and global development policy in Southeast Asia in Phnom Penh, Cambodia in December 2009. A separate, companion report summarizes the meeting itself, including interviews with participants; all are available on the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs and World Faiths Development Dialogue (WFDD) websites.1 The draft report was reviewed by participants in the Phnom Penh consultation; we acknowledge their inputs with gratitude. The Southeast Asia review is part of the comparative project on Religion and Global Development supported by the Henry R. Luce Foundation. Through a series of meetings with stakeholders and background reports, the Berkley Center and WFDD have worked to ‘“map’” the role of faithinspired organizations around the world, highlighting best practices and policy issues that arise. Prior events have included: a meeting in Washington, DC in April 2007 focused on the United States; a meeting in Doha, Qatar in December 2007 focused on the Muslim World; a meeting in The Hague, The Netherlands in June 2008 focused on Europe and Africa; and a meeting in Antigua, Guatemala in January 2009, focused on Latin America. A future meeting is planned for South Asia.
About the Authors
The report was prepared by a team of researchers at the Berkeley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs and the World Faiths Development Dialogue. The principal author is Michael Bodakowski, working under the supervision of Katherine Marshall. Sarah Arkin and Walker Grooms, graduate research fellows at the Berkley Center, contributed significantly, as did Michael Scharff and Augustina Delaney from their on-going work in Cambodia. Thomas Bohnett provided invaluable guidance and input throughout the process. Melody Fox Ahmed played a key role from the beginning of the consultation process, without whose contributions this report would not have been possible. Kory Kantenga and Amy Vander Vliet also made important contributions.
BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS
Table of Contents
Part 1: Southeast Asia: An Overview
G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y
Religion in Southeast Asia: A Brief Overview—Actual, Historical, Trends . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Buddhism . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 Islam . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Christianity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Hinduism . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Indigenous Beliefs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Faith-Inspired Organizations with Transnational Mandates . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Major Faith-Inspired Organizations. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Part 2: Sector Focus and Emerging Trends and Policy Questions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Peace and Conflict Resolution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Health . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Education . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Human Trafficking . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Environment and Natural Disasters . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Governance and Transparency . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Box 1: Filipino Catholic Church Fights for Good Governance and Against Corruption. . . . . Part 3: Country Case Studies. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Indonesia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Historical Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Religion and Government . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Development Challenges . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Government, Religious Institutions, and NGOs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Nadlhatul Ulama and Muhammadiyah . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . International Faith-Inspired Organizations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Interfaith Cooperation and Conflict. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Box 2: Women’s Rights and Faith-Inspired Organizations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Philippines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Socio-Economic Background . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Religion in the Philippines . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Box 3: Mindanao: Conflict and Development . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Faith and Public Life . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Box 4: Civil Society, the Catholic Church, and Agrarian Reform . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . NGOs, Civil Society, Faith, and Development . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Box 5: Environmental Call for Action . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Box 6: Habitat for Humanity—Peace Build Program in Mindanao . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Box 7: The Catholic Church and Contraception . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Emerging Challenges . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Box 8: Sister Adelia S. Oling and People’s Alternative Livelihood Foundation . . . . . . . . . . Cambodia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Background . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Cambodia’s Religious Heritage . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Development and Buddhist Organizations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Box 9: The Association of Buddhists for the Environment (ABE) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 15 16 17 18 20 20 21 25 25 25 26 26 27 28 28 29 29 30 30 31 31 32 33 33 34 35 35 36 37 37 37 38 39 39
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Australia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 71 Endnotes . . . . . . Role of Faith-Inspired Actors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Religion in Vietnam . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 77 3 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Politics. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Vietnam . . . . . . . Religious Organizations. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . An Overview. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Islam. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . United States . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Box 13: The Hajj Fund and Islamic Banking in Malaysia . . . Interfaith Cooperation and Dialogue . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . and Development . . . . Korea . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Box 12: Tzu Chi. . . . and the Government . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Religion in Thailand . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Ethnicity. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Burma (Myanmar) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Thailand . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Box 11: Korean Missionaries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . An Overview. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Socio-Economic Background . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . The Country in Context . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Socially Engaged Buddhism in Thailand . . . . . . and Development . . . . . . . Japan. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Faith-Inspired Organizations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Development and Muslim organizations . . . . . Laos . . . . . . . . NGOs. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . An Overview. . . . . . . . . . . Faith-Inspired Organizations and Development in Japan and Abroad. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Socio-Economic Background . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Religion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Christian Development Activities . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Religion in Burma (Myanmar) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Development Work in Vietnam . . . Taiwan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Socio-Economic and Political Background. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Emerging Issues . . . . . . . United States and Europe . . . . . . . . . . Part 4: Transnational Dimensions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Europe . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Singapore . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 41 41 43 43 43 44 44 45 46 46 46 47 47 49 49 49 50 51 51 51 52 52 53 57 57 57 58 58 59 59 60 61 62 63 63 63 64 64 65 66 67 67 67 Appendix 1: Annotated Bibliography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Religion in Laos . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Box 10: Soka Gakkai . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Malaysia . . . . NGOs. Faith-Inspired Development Work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Japanese Foreign Assistance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Faith-Inspired Organizations and Global Development Policy A Background Review “Mapping” Social and Economic Development Work in Southeast Asia R Introduction eligion is a pervasive and influential force across Southeast Asia. The review has proved challenging. The country context in which faith-inspired organizations work (social. The wide range of religious beliefs that characterize the region give rise to an extraordinary diversity of institutional forms and activities. political.2 Its central aim is what we term a “mapping” of the landscape of faith-inspired organizations working in development. cultural. some countries are not discussed in this report. this review is exploratory. humanitarian relief. belief and action. health. Their overall nature and form are not documented or analyzed in any systematic way. environmental preservation. and our use of the term “faith-inspired” reflects an appreciation of the complex links between inspiration and organization. These organizations and the people who work with them form a web of development practitioners that. The report thus focuses on a country by country overview that highlights the challenges and constraints at a national level. to those more commonly associated with secular organizations. public and private. It also sets out to identify areas meriting further investigation and discussion. The report is based largely on desk reviews of existing material and literature. and religious practices and institutions both shape and are changed by the social revolutions across all realms of Southeast Asian society. They work in education. pastoral care). and economic) largely determines and influences their roles and activities. development related roles of faith-inspired institutions and the environments in which they work. and in an extraordinary array of partnerships with secular institutions. Muslim Relief. and its findings are far from definitive. conflict resolution. ranging from the spiritual realm. enriched by ongoing WFDD field work in Cambodia and interviews with specialists and practitioners. in order to identify and highlight areas with potential for increased collaboration. A separate section explores the work of transnational organizations. 5 2010 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | . others covering a wide gamut of services and community action. though they do have vibrant faithinspired organizations engaged in development work that deserve investigation. some classically religious in nature (teaching scripture. churches. both historically and present-day. mosques. transmits experience and ideas across national and often faith boundaries. Given the diversity and size of Southeast Asia. and other religious institutions across the region. The report makes no systematic effort to define religion or faith. working from the many thousands of temples. and thus has not constrained its analysis to a tightly defined set of faith actors. To a significant extent. therefore. focusing primarily on those with an Asian focus but also international faithinspired organizations including World Vision. and their policy implications. Institutions and communities with faith links engage in widely ranging activities. and they vary by country and region. Its approach is wide-ranging and inclusive. HIV/AIDS. among many other sectors. They work independently. Faith-inspired institutions can be found working in all sectors of society. focusing on Southeast Asia. and the Council for the Parliament of the World’s Religions. and emergency relief. Religious beliefs are as diverse as the region’s geography and peoples. The report aims to identify and examine the practical. inter alia. in collaboration with other faith-inspired groups. Religion and faith are tied to moral and ethical attributes that tend to emphasize human and spiritual contributions to political and economic domains.
In communities. is not on the ways in which faith and belief shape attitudes towards development and related behaviors. bringing faith communities into close proximity. Confucianism. Faith-inspired organizations thus find themselves often at the epicenter of local understanding and influence surrounding development work and humanitarian aid. and Judaism all have reach and influence. Diverse faith-inspired organizations form part of the development architecture. The major faiths present in Southeast Asia all profess a particular focus on those who are excluded and marginalized in society. human rights abuses. Belief systems are syncretic in many situations. In Southeast Asia. and established relationships and trust with local leaders and community members. presenting attendant challenges of coordination and aligning with national and international strategic objectives. at the grassroots level. significant and well established networks. Shintoism. practical ways. as well as special challenges on issues ranging from governance to effective community mobilization. however. faith-inspired organizations can have a nuanced understanding of the local context. The review is designed to inform and serve both faith and development practitioners. economical. A wide array of groups addresses social injus6 tice. Muslim. In places where there are active conflicts. and often have a significant value-added. and political reach. Often the faith-inspired experience suggests new insights and practical lessons. interreligious conflict. who are often particularly imbued with their religious identity. and wide-ranging efforts to address conflicts and social tensions. and each of the larger world religions has a uniquely Southeast Asian character. except as elements of what is broadly defined as civil society. as such. and indigenous religions and beliefs are also significant.Beliefs affect behaviors relevant to many endeavors having clear social. and environmental degradation in concrete. The report’s findings could serve as a useful enrichment for development discussions. which tend to have the most active institutions: Buddhism. those who suffer. The primary focus of the present exploration. Faith-inspired organizations are particularly active. Hinduism. and those who are poor. have rarely figured on development agendas. leading both to constructive cooperation. The report focuses on the largest faith communities. but on a set of more pragmatic questions linked to policy engagement and service delivery. and religious fabric of Southeast Asia. national borders and ethnicities overlap. and in some instances. and Christianity. To date. cultural. The central threads running through much of the analysis and discussions are the purposeful focus of much faith-inspired work on poor communities and grassroots endeavors. Recent natural disasters in Southeast Asia highlight how effectively some faith-inspired actors can respond and their extraordinary reach. BERKLEY CENTER | G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y . but other religions and indigenous belief systems also help to weave the social. faith-inspired institutions. faith-inspired grassroots initiatives engage the poorest members of the community.
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has been used by political leaders to derive power and support. Burma’s (Myanmar’s) military regime has in many respects coopted the upper echelons of the Buddhist sangha. historically spread from India and Sri Lanka to present day Burma (Myanmar). Buddhism.98% eligious institutions and faith-inspired organizations have a strong physical and spiritual presence across most Southeast Asian communities. The capacity of the state also shapes the approach to faith-inspired organizations. and Laos. through the 13th century. Thailand.Part I Southeast Asia: An Overview R Religion in Southeast Asia: A Brief Overview—Actual.83% Source: The Association of Religion Data Archives (ARDA) Buddhism Theravada Buddhism. Buddhist: 27. including prominently but not exclusively education and health. Historical.90% Christian: 21. Thus. in addition to its obvious and influential spiritual realm. Trends Figure 1 Southeast Asia. Faith-inspired institutions are involved in a range of social and public services at the community level. The following section briefly introduces the region’s major religious traditions. for example. including those with a faith character. Buddhist kings and powerful Buddhist empires reigned across the Mekong River region for hundreds of years. the Buddhist lineage of the King remains a symbol of national cohesion during its on-going political crisis. while in Vietnam. as well as to civil society more broadly. Malaysia.4 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 9 . and each country presents a quite different profile. Even the most remote and inaccessible locations are likely to have a vibrant religious center or centers that often function as a social and economic hub. The respective roles of local versus regional and international organizations also differs markedly by country.09% Muslim: 36. nongovernmental organizations. Population by Religious Affiliation (%) Ethnoreligionist: 4. Religious demography. installing Buddhism as permanent and influential fixture across these Southeast Asian societies. has a large and dynamic civil society with thousands of different organizations working in virtually every imaginable sector. relations between state and faith. and predominant areas of activity of faith institutions vary widely across the region. sometimes mirrored also in wide differences among regions of a single country.23% Agnostic: 2. a communist state. Cambodia.69% Other: 6. work under significant restrictions. the oldest of the three main divisions of Buddhism and most widespread practice in Southeast Asia. with a vibrant and established democracy. beside more classic spiritual roles.3 while in Burma (Myanmar). In Thailand. and as a force for national cohesion. the Philippines. This diversity gives rise to widely different arrangements and focus in terms of types of development programs and sector concentration.
Some observers suggest that movements towards Sharia law. The tensions are not easily measured or mapped. Islam was introduced in Southeast Asia by way of Arab merchants and sailors and is present today throughout the region. are active in promoting socially engaged Buddhism on a regional and international level. Jesuit Relief Service. contributing a Buddhist voice to international development discussions on topics ranging from social justice and education to environmental protection and sustainable development. Adventist Development and Relief Agency. though Christian missionaries and development workers are widespread in Buddhist majority areas as well. Laos. The Buddhist temple often serves as an important center of social life in villages and towns.5 Sulak Sivaraksa has been particularly influential in bringing attention to the socially engaged Buddhist movement. Apart from the Philippines. and southern Thailand. Christianity Christianity is thought to have begun its journey into Asia with the mission of the apostle Thomas in India. and finance policy. predominantly lay movements. for example. Christianity has experienced quite rapid growth in Vietnam in the past decade. Malaysia. a Japanese lay Buddhist movement. Islam.6 Buddhist organizations from the wealthier countries in Asia (particularly Japan and Taiwan). Indonesia is the world’s most populous Muslim country. Daily functions of the state. and Southeast Asia is home to 65 percent of the world’s Muslims. and Cordaid. Caritas. but are discussed within policy and operational circles. put to practice the tenets of socially engaged Buddhism. in many cases together with local traditions and customs. In Burma (Myanmar) and Thailand. and Burma (Myanmar). and in Indonesia.7 Islamic education is influential. Islam Islam is the most widely practiced religion in Southeast Asia (an estimated 37 percent of the population). Indonesia. Recent tensions within specific communities are seen to result largely from the influence of strains of Islam from the Middle East. but also recognized in majority Buddhist countries such as Thailand. law. Islam influences governance. Christianity’s reach and influence today is spreading. These contrast with traditional practices and beliefs. Some countries or sub-regions are witnessing pressures to follow stricter Islamic legal and political codes. The most populous Muslim countries and regions are: Indonesia. South Korean churches are particularly active in sending missionaries (primarily Protestant) across Southeast Asia. replaces public education systems in many areas. especially in Thailand. often offering education and other social services. Muslim organizations are an integral component of the social and BERKLEY CENTER | 10 . at times blurring the line between the secular and religious realms. They remain a widespread presence in Southeast Asia. in addition to spiritual guidance. Cambodia. Catholicism arrived in Southeast Asia on a large scale with the Spanish in Manila in 1571. though it faces various obstacles from the government. many faith-inspired organizations are Christian and involved in a wide range of activities including education and health. historically. lay Buddhist movements. legal. laying the foundation for the predominantly Roman Catholic heritage in the Philippines today. Mindanao (Philippines). has active chapters in most countries in Asia. Cambodia. In Cambodia. notably in Indonesia and Malaysia. Alongside traditional Buddhist structures. However. Christianity has exerted less influence than Buddhism. with significant minorities in most countries (particularly Burma (Myanmar). and. both national and transnational. for example. and Malaysia. Hinduism. Large Christian organizations include: World Vision. national. are driven by a small minority of religious hardliners and political elites. Christians are present primarily among minority ethnic groups. among other aspects of daily life. and Vietnam).G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y Buddhist monks. are actively engaged in social development work at the local. approximately 9 percent of the population is Christian. Prominent examples are Aceh. and regional levels. Protestant Christianity was first introduced in the region by the Dutch in the early seventeenth century but did not spread extensively until missionaries arrived en mass early in the nineteenth century. are influenced by Muslim practice and thought. in varying ways and to varying degrees. Soka Gakkai. Most Southeast Asian Muslims follow Sunni Islam. including education. In predominantly Muslim countries. and finance. Traditionally Southeast Asian Islam has lived harmoniously alongside the region’s other large religions and indigenous belief systems. political fabric.
for instance. In Indonesia. 9 Today. Dharma Drum Mountain. and Chung Tai Shan. Australia’s largest transnational faith-inspired organization is World Vision Australia. animist spirits of people who died violent deaths. and Vietnam often face additional antagonism from the state since they are more likely to belong to ethnic minority groups that the government associates with “subversive” political activity. rituals. While many of the original religious practices have faded as other religions were introduced. Fo Guang Shan. There is. after he unsuccessfully tried to enforce a ban on nat worship. Hindu art. the highest concentration being in Bali. Laos. Both organizations collaborate between and across faiths and with the United Nations and other international organizations with the explicit aim of promoting a harmonious society. Indonesia. trade. Southeast Asian indigenous beliefs are generally animist in nature. Local beliefs and superstitions present in rural areas influence communities’ views on modern development. and practices in the country. and adherents have reported discrimination. some of the largest being Tzu-Chi. Korea. at times presenting challenges for faith-inspired organizations. especially those in the region. Laos. there are often different strata of spirits that have access to or inhabit different ethereal levels. compared to about 9 percent in Indonesia as a whole. In Burma Transnational development work by faith-inspired organizations from all of the major religions is significant across Southeast Asia. Taiwan’s many Buddhist organizations do social development work with international mandates. several Buddhist organizations. and Taiwan have active faithinspired development and relief organizations. but Hinduism is the traditional culture of Cambodia.Hinduism Millions of people throughout Southeast Asia practice Hinduism. the largest Christian non-governmental organization operating in the Asia Pacific region. often creating a unique national religious character reflecting each country’s distinct history and culture.”10 (Myanmar). for example the Malaysian bomohs. the Supreme Patriarch of the (Buddhist) Dharma Yuttikanikaya Order observed in February 2009 that “Buddhism is the national religion of Cambodia. In the cosmologies of Southeast Asian animism. Shamanism sometimes plays a role in the indigenous religious practices of Southeast Asia. Throughout the 1800s Dutch colonial policy brought India and Bali under the same rule and later aimed to protect Balinese Hinduism by limiting Christian and Islamic proselytization. especially at the local level. Animists living in Burma (Myanmar). much variation in the degree to which animism and other indigenous beliefs have or have not been institutionalized. Hinduism has left an indelible cultural and religious heritage in Cambodia. a pantheon of nats. as the Angkor kings promoted Hindu sects in the 8th century. Many of these organizations have strong ties in wealthier countries. Korea draws on its Buddhist and BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS Faith-Inspired Organizations with Transnational Mandates | 2010 11 .8 Hinduism first spread to Indonesia through colonization. the historically peaceful coexistence of Hinduism and Mahayana Buddhism has ensured a lasting Hindu influence on beliefs. involving the worship of spirits that inhabit many different living organisms. often in conjunction with other faiths. Thailand. particularly evident in local ceremonies and traditions. have significant international programs. architecture. the world’s largest Hindu temple. Bour Kry. and traditions are still important today and permeate local culture in many aspects. whose traditional healing practices are to varying degrees integrated into Islam. however. places. Indigenous belief systems tend to be more common and “pure” in rural areas. notably Soka Gakkai and Rissho Kosei-kai. Vietnam. and Burma (Myanmar). Indigenous Beliefs Indigenous beliefs are widely practiced throughout Southeast Asia. Hindus account for about 90 percent of the total population in Bali. was formalized in the middle of the eleventh century by King Anawrahta of Bagan. Spreading from India in the first century. Cambodia is home to Angkor Wat. traditional and animist beliefs are prohibited by law. From Japan. and objects. Although less than one percent of Cambodia’s population is Hindu today. Japan. and intermarriage. They blend with larger religions. Australia.
The tsunami also brought to light the difficulties of coordination among faithinspired actors. regionally. American Jewish World Service. The Asian tsunami of 2004. as well as collaborating across faiths and with secular development agencies and governments. or should a central coordinating body manage and oversee development and relief efforts? Transnational faith-inspired organizations often have larger operating budgets than their national counterparts (though this is not always the case) and many employees that form a worldwide network of offices. They are instrumental in rapid response to complex humanitarian emergencies following natural disasters or conflict. Catholic Relief Services. and Jesuit Refugee Service. Muslim Aid.11 . Islamic Relief. increasing transnational and national networks of development practitioners and building local capacity.Christian roots in its overseas development work. The following chart. and independently. Large organizations include World Vision (USA and Europe). Numerous other primarily Western based international faith-inspired organizations are active across Southeast Asia. These organizations commonly work through partnerships with local faith-inspired organizations and institutions. Is decentralization the ideal route. More comprehensive country lists. Many interfaith initiatives. These organizations are working nationally. for example the partnership between World Vision and Muhammadiyah in Indonesia. can be found on the Berkley Center website. Organizations in the list were chosen based on their range of activities in one or more countries in Southeast Asia. lists some of the 12 JEWISH American Jewish World Service American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee largest and most recognized organizations working in the region. Most of these organizations work with populations whose faith-beliefs differ from their own and strive to provide aid and assistance regardless of religious orientation. saw the mobilization of organizations from around the world. grew out of the tsunami response. religion CHRISTIAN organization Caritas Internationalis Catholic Relief Services Christian Aid Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) World Vision Jesuit Refugee Services World Council of Churches Lutheran World Relief Norwegian Church Aid Habitat for Humanity Salvation Army G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y BUDDHIST Tzu Chi Dharma Drum Mountain Guang Shan Chung Tai Shan Buddhist Peace Fellowship Buddhist AIDS Project Sathirakoses-Nagapradeepa Foundation Soka Gakkai The Buddhist NGO Network of Japan (BNN) Thai Rissho Friendship Foundation Rissho Kosei-kai Arigato Foundation Shanti Volunteer Association (SVA) International Network of Engaged Buddhists (INEB) BERKLEY CENTER | MUSLIM Muslim Aid Islamic Relief BAHA’I INTERFAITH Baha’i International Community Coordinating Group for Religion and Society (CGRS) Council for a Parliament of the World’s Religions World Conference of Religions for Peace Major Faith-Inspired Organizations Major world faiths with a presence in Southeast Asia are engaged in social development work on varying scales. including local organizations. raising the question as to how local and transnational organizations should best collaborate amid catastrophes. Faith-inspired organizations are based both in Asia itself and abroad. many with headquarters in the USA and Europe. the largest humanitarian emergency of our time (possibly alongside the January 2010 Haiti earthquake).
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Under virtually all circumstances. However. national. often has earned for them a level of trust that is typically not associated 15 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS eligion plays a visible yet often ambiguous role in the multiple and very different conflict situations across Southeast Asia. In the Southeast Asia review. Information about the roles of faith-inspired organizations in all these areas is partial and scattered. faith-inspired contributions at the grassroots level emerge as an area of particular interest.” This complexity helps to explain the lack of consensus on religion as a cause or fuel for conflicts worldwide. support for trauma healing and victims. support during resettlement.or intra-faith conflict. These conflicts range from armed disputes and terrorist threats to simmering social tensions and communities where high crime rates and other factors produce insecurity. Some well-known instances of terrorist acts where the perpetrators say that their motives are religious are a mounting concern with global implications. The historical and almost universal presence of faith institutions as centers of social and economic life in most communities. Agreement on the range of activities that these terms include vary. and ethnicity overlap in shaping attitudes towards violence and the position of “the other. for Southeast Asia. and leaders can and do play central. Religion. thus. and Burma (Myanmar). including in Southeast Asia. As an example.12 and. Malaysia. broader social and economic dynamics. culture. 2010 | . inter alia. which contribute to social tension. competition over water resources more broadly. at the international. Notable are the potential and actual tensions linked to climate change that introduce new forms of dislocation or social competition (for example land and water disputes and climate driven refugees). others see incitement or encouragement by religious leaders. Aceh and Sulawesi (Indonesia). has raised societal tensions. Religion is almost always one among many sources of tension. notably those involving Mindanao (Philippines). but examples are religious leader participation in formal and informal peace negotiations (as has been the case in the Philippines). More specifically. religious institutions. communities. religious heritage linked to historical memories and the politics of identity clearly can infuse or exacerbate conflicts which also have political and economic dimensions. and perceptions of religion’s role vary by actor and over time. many ascribe religious elements. regional. roles in conflict resolution. faith-inspired actors are undeniably engaged in virtually all contemporary conflict situations in the region in different capacities. how religious beliefs contribute to conflict situations is complex and contentious.Part 2 Sector Focus and Emerging Trends and Policy Questions R Peace and Conflict Resolution That said. while still others see religion as a proxy for tensions that have other roots. to several Southeast Asian conflicts. especially in rural areas. and serving as a witness to both atrocities and heroic actions. humanitarian aid during conflicts (especially work with refugees). Beyond “traditional” conflicts. Southern Thailand. Some ascribe conflicts to intrinsic tensions that give rise to inter. the rise of more fundamentalist interpretations and tendencies within some Muslim communities. and grassroots levels. and migration. religion may also enter into other. often critical. The terms “peacemaking” and “peacebuilding” apply to a wide range of work. These activities form the backbone and often raison d’être of a wide range of faith-inspired organizations. Looking beyond religion as a cause or fuel for tension.
temples. fears. There. American Jewish World Service. which have incorporated many elements of different traditions and have prided themselves on living side by side. In Mindanao. providing refugee assistance and trauma care. interfaith dialogue. combined with actions targeted at specific groups. The reality and perception of corruption is increasingly a platform for political mobilization (witness Indonesia in 1998. and trauma healing. where conflict involves a predominantly Muslim minority in a majority Catholic nation. facilitating dialogue across warring sides. and Jesuit Refugee Service. United Religions Initiative (all of which have regional bodies working to promote interfaith dialogue). links between development and instability. BERKLEY CENTER | Health The lower income countries in Southeast Asia face a significant array of health issues. and leaders in ongoing dialogue about development directions and issues can play important roles. Change and crisis. More extreme segments of most faith traditions draw on popular anger about perceived social injustice and group exclusion. and long-term development assistance and capacity building. More significant is the substantial overlap among different categories of work. including reconciliation work with very practical rebuilding of infrastructure destroyed by the tsunami. The role of inequalities has a complex interplay with violence. Increased transnational exchange and influence within faiths (an example being educational exchange between the Arab world and Southeast Asian Muslims—contributing to what some term “Arabization” of Southeast Asian Islam) has put pressure on the historical character of Southeast Asian faiths. A vicious cycle can result. often spark tensions. local NGOs. and faith-inspired organizations are involved in various ways. albeit complex. and garners attention at the national level. Religious extremism is in many respects a distinct topic. depending on the country context. Historically. the initiatives appear to be making significant headway. faithinspired actors have been effective in mobilizing public support for peace (for example in Cambodia with the Buddhist-led peace marches and Soka Gakkai’s advocacy for nuclear disarmament). Parliament of the World’s Religions. Their contributions have particular importance in fragile states and communities. and civil society. and long-term development planning. Most of the large international faith-inspired organizations work in the major conflict zones in Southeast Asia. may blur the lines between tendencies that truly represent a distortion of religious teachings towards an extreme and more dubious labeling and marginalizing of a group as extremist. The gap 16 . The result is a perception of mounting tensions both within and between faiths. and voicing opposition to oppression. interfaith dialogue spans the government. Their conflict work is closely tied to other activities. with the large and experienced Muslim organizations Muhammadiyah and Nahdlatul Ulama carrying significant influence with their combined 70 million members. World Vision. including: World Conference of Religions for Peace. Catholic Relief Services. social and economic. NGOs. in the wake of the Khmer Rouge genocide. they often provide the little education and health care that is available and have extraordinary knowledge of local circumstances. Thus massive work in Aceh in which many of these organizations participated following the 2004 tsunami combined postconflict work. These transnational organizations often work in partnership with local churches. Caritas.G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y with government or secular agencies. While actual outcomes are difficult to measure. with the so-labeled group increasingly resentful of their treatment. Poor governance and corruption. communities. National and local level faith-inspired organizations range in influence and activity. and are particularly marked in Cambodia. Soka Gakkai. religious leaders. particularly in reaching rural areas. like education and community support. Islamic Relief. reconciliation. The review highlights the widely held view that the potential for working with and through on-the-ground networks of faith-inspired organizations is only partially developed. mosques. Thailand). Again. and other faith-inspired and secular organizations. Their programs vary widely and include humanitarian assistance. and aspirations. Philippines. Indonesia is a special case. as well as broad community development. but it is related to the development agenda because of significant. undermining the stability and physical security which are preconditions for successful social progress. faith institutions. The growing set of activities under the heading of “peacebuilding” focus particularly on peace education. Muslim Aid.
Despite these challenges. migration. While it is generally appreciated at the international level that faith-inspired organizations are significant actors in the education sector and should be more engaged at the policy level. and partnership arrangements among faith-inspired organizations and governments. inter alia. especially in filling gaps where the government is unable or has failed to provide adequate education to its population. Laos. making blanket policy generalizations about faith-inspired education rather perilous. the education landscape and challenges differ substantially by country. All of the major faiths offer education through different types of institutions and in very different forms. Southern China. Faith-inspired organizations have been most visible in some public health campaigns and in the response to HIV/AIDS. In such situations. quality. Their services are particularly important in rural areas. where trust of the government may be weak. teaching about HIV/AIDS and how to avoid high-risk behavior. Furthermore. impact. mental. Vietnam. What emerges from this preliminary review is both a significant continuing health agenda among the major faiths (for example the Buddhist focus on meditation as a foundation for overall spiritual. natural disasters.14 National Buddhist NGOs have developed to engage monks in health imperatives. tions have contributed to several of the region’s successful family planning programs. Burma [Myanmar]. Pagoda-based care and monk engagement in health care has historically been active throughout Buddhist societies in Asia. Cambodia. Coordination. and tuberculosis. major facilities like the Sihanouk Hospital Center for Hope in Cambodia.13 and specific interventions like the neo-natal resuscitation and wheelchair programs run by the Church of Latter Day Saints). Region-wide health imperatives also are significant—witness the SARS and H1N1 crises. and conflict all contribute to health concerns. urbanization. data for Southeast Asia that would answer questions about how much are not available. Laos. working specifically at the community level. data on the range and scope of their involvement (as is the case with most sectors where faith-inspired organizations work). and Bhutan) and Buddhism for Development in Cambodia. Faith-inspired organiza- Faith-inspired organizations play significant if hard to measure roles in education across much of Southeast Asia. with examples found today in the Mekong region. the content of education varies from essentially secular-style instruction following government mandated curriculum. particularly at the rural community level. and physical health) and a wide array of specific health interventions that are part of the community and national programs of faith-inspired organizations (for example numerous HIV/AIDS programs. though limited mapping and coordination makes it difficult to know the true scope. as well as general care for common illnesses and maternal and child health. engaging monks in the Mekong region in HIV prevention. and Thailand). Human trafficking. the active sex industry. this preliminary review found numerous examples where faith-inspired run education plays important roles. an example is the UNICEF supported Buddhist Leadership Initiative. the Sangha Metta Project (active in Thailand. cooperation. where indigenous faith beliefs remain prevalent and are syncretic with the larger religious traditions. Indigenous healers continue to play a role as well. and role. and in devout religious societies. where education and basic services are limited (notable examples exist in Cambodia. faith-inspired leaders have collaborated with the government (as has been the case in Indonesia) to promote health initiatives and clarify misunderstandings among their faith-group adherents. The missing knowledge about quantity. is difficult to come by. malaria. 17 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS between the mounting demand for care and that readily available to the most vulnerable and marginalized groups is increasingly apparent. Education | 2010 . and international organizations vary significantly by country. Monks are working directly with international organizations. for example in the impact of epidemic diseases. polio. While it is increasingly appreciated within international health circles that faith-inspired organizations provide significant health services. to complete religious instruction. NGOs. and reach of faith-run health services makes it difficult to engage these actors in both policy discussions and programming for priority interventions for poorly served populations. as reliable coordination or mapping mechanisms are limited. with numerous points in between. which work with monks and nuns.Health challenges differ significantly by country and region across Southeast Asia. Major health challenges include HIV/AIDS. Mongolia.
and social marginalization. with both stricter forms of Islam (with influence from the Arab world) affecting in some cases the character of education and the religious and political perspectives of students. gender inequality. raising similar questions. and scope of education vary widely and is largely unmeasured and not publicized. They are active 18 . generally. A challenge facing schools of all faith beliefs is a lack of rigorous evaluation of the quality of instruction. It is closely related to challenges and rising global social tensions facing Islamic madrasahs and the content of their education. A host of socio-economic factors lead families to sell or traffic minors. some teaching a stricter version of Islam than has been traditionally present. both national and from abroad. tends to be better documented and more centralized than Buddhist education. In Buddhist societies pagoda-based education was the historic center for education and remains important today in many areas. Most. Kuwait. and transit region for trafficked persons. both for society as a whole and for the individual trafficked. Proselytization is. It is. perhaps the most prolific in Thailand. but there is a special spotlight on Islamic education. but different forms of bonded labor are also important. They attract local students of different faiths. Estimates of the number of trafficked persons in Southeast Asia vary significantly.15 The effects of human trafficking are wide-ranging. undergoing substantial change. Islamic faith-inspired education is well established (particularly in Indonesia and Malaysia) and in many cases is recognized by the government as a parallel system to public education at the primary. or individuals to choose voluntarily a path that puts them at risk of trafficking. though not all those involved. and increased government involvement in faith-inspired education institutions (particularly in Malaysia). and Saudi Arabia. though recent discussions surrounding this review highlight that many of these schools are increasingly forced to charge fees. particularly in rural areas. Best known is for sexual exploitation. however. This trend has raised concerns about fundamentalist education and its effect on traditional societies and cultures that have lived in harmony for many centuries. where Muhammadiyah and Nahdlatul Ulama report that they reach over one million students at all levels of education. trade schools. Buddhist universities are found in several countries in Southeast Asia. and university levels. Islamic education. orphanages. a nagging concern and challenge surrounding Christian education. This applies to secular and faith institutions. The region is an origin. BERKLEY CENTER | Human Trafficking Southeast Asia is a region of special concern to the community fighting contemporary human trafficking. the Ministry of Education supports Islamic (and Buddhist) education outside of the national government system. Funds from the Arab world support Islamic boarding schools. however. reaching over a half million students. The range of educational institutions varies. In Thailand as well. and madrasah) are found in most Muslim majority regions and play a central role in education in Muslim societies. impunity. The most extensive system of Islamic schools is in Indonesia. migration. who are often educated in Christian ethics and moral beliefs. Malaysia. A quite wide spectrum of organizations with faith links have come to play significant roles in the global effort to combat human trafficking. among others. pondok [Malaysia and southern Thailand]. destination. and some operate free of charge. Christian schools in Southeast Asia are widespread (though mapping is limited) and run by myriad organizations. Some students travel to study in. natural disasters. Trafficking takes many forms. An important phenomenon in Southeast Asia is transnational education and educational exchange. as they are often perceived as providing a higher quality education compared to the government system. increased tourism. quality. these include poverty. are minors. corruption. universities. and primary and secondary schools.G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y Faith-inspired organization run education is historically perceived as reaching out to the poor and marginalized in society. including boarding schools. though the content. Many children in orphanages are not technically orphans but are sent by their parents to receive an education. where Christian schools operate in non-Christian majority locations and enroll non-Christian students. Islamic boarding schools at the primary and secondary level (known as pesantren [Indonesia]. secondary. but most agree only a small share of those affected are currently reached by aid organizations.
because there are disagreements among different groups about the most appropriate and effective ways to combat the problems of trafficking. trauma counseling. creating opportunities for increased cooperation. and international levels and their work takes many forms. alongside active involvement of religious lobbies in some countries (especially the United States). regional. and growing church membership in some countries ensures publicity and support on key issues including human trafficking.17 The vitality. Overall data on levels of engagement. It has also at times given rise to controversies. advocacy on human rights grounds for governmental and intergovernmental action. Human trafficking is a transnational issue that crosses national and regional boundaries in Southeast Asia. in the interests of social justice. many though not all with faith links. A 2010 report of the United Nations Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking suggests that the enormous potential role faith-inspired organizations can play at the local. including quiet compassionate support of victims (including livelihood training. for example. efforts within “sending” communities to combat the factors that lead women especially to leave their homes. regardless of the circumstances that brought them there. are hard to come by. cultural emphasis on purity and virginity. The response often involves differing levels of social stigmatization.19 The mix of on the ground efforts to work with communities and individuals and high visibility international advocacy offer an example of both the strengths of faith-inspired work. at an international level. and work within legal frameworks to bring perpetrators to justice and change legal systems. has brought intense international attention to brothels in Cambodia through its highly publicized raids alongside Cambodia police. both of which can affect responses to human trafficking. In Cambodia for example. has political dimensions at the national. the Khmer Rouge largely wiped out Buddhist influence on society. economic opportunity. however. contribute to the societal response to victims of trafficking. underpin common activism around trafficking. resourcefulness. describe their work as driven by compassion for the victims. The United Nations Inter-Agency Project on Human Trafficking in the Greater Mekong subregion (UNIAP) has facilitated a consultative process called COMMIT that works specifically on cooperation across borders. prompting some victims not to identify themselves to aid organizations. as a phenomenon and in its response. or creating increased hardship surrounding their assimilation back into society.16 In Muslim societies as well. as well as generating a host of sensitive debates. between countries with at times contentious relationships to strengthen a regional response to trafficking. and global levels should be harnessed more effectively. informed by religious beliefs in many cases. The latter include the fragmentation of efforts and lack of coherent reflection and consensus on strategic approaches. though similarities exist. 19 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 . faith-inspired organizations can be instrumental in helping to shape constructive opinions and norms. some groups are concerned that its “cowboy” style and focus on political visibility may undermine broader efforts. Each country and local context. shelters. It is also more broadly driven by efforts to change the underlying systems at work. however. particularly in cases of sexual exploitation and abuse. especially young girls involuntarily trafficked and trapped in virtual slavery. undermining the role of the family unit and respect for elders. is unique. regional. can affect people’s views on those who have worked in the sex industry. Gender roles also play a significant role in victim response. This work has brought about surprising and often very constructive alliances among institutions across quite distinct political spectrums (described by Allen Hertzke in Freeing God’s Children). and international levels. an American faith-inspired legal NGO. Work by faith-inspired organizations on human trafficking. reach of American Christian church networks in particular. Human trafficking as a transnational issue has particular significance in Southeast Asia and requires more effective cooperation. national. and of some of the pitfalls.at local. Expanding communications technologies and increasing transnational religious links. with differing faith beliefs and historical contexts shaping how and to what extent religion and faith-inspired organizations engage and shape views on human trafficking.18 International Justice Mission. Those most actively involved. and shelter). Local cultural norms. national. which brings out the moral dimensions and builds on faith communications assets and networks.
prone to frequent earthquakes.Environment and Natural Disasters Southeast Asia has one of the most fragile and diverse natural habitats in the world. governments. It is vulnerable to the effects of climate change and natural disasters. Their efforts remain rather decentralized and largely unmeasured. tsunamis. from there. all put considerable pressure on the already fragile environment. and in the Philippines Catholic leaders are vocal in urging public participation. and. are increasingly active in voicing concerns about environmental degradation and climate change. Buddhist leaders speak forcefully and often to great effect about the importance of respect for nature and harmony within the ecosystem. but contains 80 percent of the world’s biological diversity. confronts a wide range of governance challenges. like every world region. along with resulting population shifts. Muslim ideals influence laws and approaches to governance. particularly when it moves towards . faith-engagement on development policy for good governance remains a sensitive topic in many countries. and about harming it as something that should be prevented. Large organizations including World Vision Australia and Muslim Aid are engaged in government level advocacy. while some are imbued with the history and culture of each country and. the Philippines. with potential for increased interfaith collaboration. To cite an example. Rapid industrialization and agricultural expansion. Some challenges are general to contemporary law and administration and the evolving role of the state. are two notable examples. and long-term mitigation. International interfaith conferences have involved faith-inspired development practitioners from across Southeast Asia. Its long coastline is home to millions who are at risk from frequent severe weather and the adverse effects of climate change. Faith-inspired development practitioners point to the environment and climate change as topics of general consensus and shared commitment. In Indonesia. a number of experiences highlight direct and constructive engagement between faith-inspired organizations and government/secular actors. The region has only 3 percent of the world’s land area. the region overall. faith-inspired actors are particularly active in the response to natural disasters and climate change issues. both in their operational roles and speaking to their spiritual traditions. with numerous examples of cooperation between international organizations. Nonetheless. stressing the importance of a systematic and concerted climate change response. including advocacy. and Burma (Myanmar) in particular. to a degree. An area of intense activity is disaster response. disaster relief. Australia. as well as rising sea levels. With increased access to communications technology. BERKLEY CENTER | Governance and Transparency Southeast Asia. religion is tending to be a more visible part of the public discourse. advocacy and work to mitigate the adverse effects of climate change and unsustainable develop20 G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y ment projects. and training. so that consistent policy level engagement is a challenge. a recent interfaith climate manifesto in Sweden and numerous programs during the December 2009 Parliament of World Religions in Melbourne. through various paths. and mudslides. Faith-inspired organizations. Long-standing programs of the Alliance of Religions for Conservation (ARC) include workshops. While in many ways faith-inspired organizations are an integral and largely indistinguishable part of the region’s civil society in terms of stance on environmental issues. Socially engaged Buddhist organizations engage through individual monks working to preserve the forest through advocacy work.20 though its influence and reach vary widely depending on the context. cyclones. noting that the effects of climate change have ramifications not only on the region’s developing countries but on developed countries as well—climate induced migration being one example among many. revival of ancient teachings (as in Mongolia). and local faith-institutions. Generally. both as advocates and activists. Religion and culture enter. and “ordination” of individual trees to symbolize their sacred character. into both the overall governance climate (for example in shaping community values) and into some specific debates. in Indonesia and Malaysia. the current Thai crisis involves questions about the Buddhist heritage in Thailand and its links to the authority of the monarchy. As illustrations. they can and often do bring special perspectives tied to both spiritual teachings and their lived experience. for example information campaigns. Many faith-inspired organizations have taken up the cause.
2010. spoke about the need to reshape Philippine society to promote a common good. the ruling military junta retains tight control and influence over the Buddhist sangha.ateneo. Angel Lagdameo. The Archbishop emphasized the need for strong values in governance. like poor drivers.2009. Catholics stated publicly that they are concerned about issues of governance and corruption. some faith-inspired organizations quietly promote good governance. and how all these were used to make growth work for the poor. From http://www. Responsible citizens produce good leaders. Groups that enjoy tacit support of the government. the sangha-oriented Buddhist organizations in Thailand for example. urged their constituents to push for good governance and transparency. law-makers. The conference focused on: how local government officials have successfully empowered their constituents.” Ateneo University. Governance. nonetheless. in practice their roles and record are mixed.21 Faith actors are. how they have partnered with civil society organizations for better public service delivery and protection of disadvantaged groups. where corruption and lack of transparency are widely acknowledged as challenges at all levels of government. how they have enhanced transparency and social accountability. vice-president. and nourished by a system where Filipinos proactively and responsibly participate in the mainstream political life. strengthened by an effective political system where accountability and the rule of law prevail.php?p=120&type=2&sec=29&aid=7589 21 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | . Religious communities and networks are tightly restricted and monitored in some countries. In Cambodia. archbishop of Jaro and president of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines. but. There are active Box 1 2010 Filipino Catholic Church Fights for Good Governance and Against Corruption In the run-up to the 2010 presidential elections in the Philippines.advocacy. Close relationships with governments in some instances dampen criticism and advocacy. as well as collaboration with secular development actors. as a reported 75 percent of the eligible 50 million Filipinos voted for a new president. should be anchored in grassroots economic empowerment. home of the largest Jesuit community in the Philippines. These efforts represent important faith-inspired approaches to promoting good governance. senators. he writes that “Graft and Corruption is an evil that affects many levels and areas of life. though there are numerous examples where organizations are strong and effective advocates even in the face of government opposition and repression.edu/index. good leaders produce good citizens. On his blog. while effective partnerships to bring tangible improvements in governance are fairly rare. limiting their formal capacity to influence governance norms policies. he said. Mixed attitudes of governments towards civil society roles color the way in which relationships with faith-inspired groups akin to NGOs tend to evolve. Graft and corruption is a sin that cries to heaven especially if it is committed against the poor people.” and that “Leadership in governance starts with leaders as citizens. engaged in governance issues through a wide range of often complex relationships. the Catholic Church. the Philippines ranks relatively low (139/182) on a ranking of the world’s most corrupt countries. held a World Bank sponsored conference on good governance from November 4 to 6. and public officials. In Burma (Myanmar) for example. 2009 at a good governance summit in Makati City. In Indonesia faith-inspired organizations are more visible and active players on issues at the center of public policy debates. are often less involved in working actively for better governance and may support the status quo. On May 10. According to Transparency International’s 2009 corruption perception index. as advocacy arouses government suspicion. especially promoting honesty and focus on the poor and excluded. along with other Christian and civil society organizations. and the malice of corruption in society. While some faith leaders would like to see religions in a vanguard in advocating for good governance. On May 5. activities are often not publicized.
Islamic political parties ranging from those advocating an Islamic state. The roles of faith-inspired communities and organizations in pressing for and supporting political reforms also varies widely. The largest religious organizations. at different moments in time. BERKLEY CENTER | G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y 22 . There are cases where religiously labeled and led political parties are pivotal actors. and efficient and honest administration. to those that aim to infuse democracy with Islamic values. accountability. Faith-inspired organizations themselves acknowledge many challenges within their own institutions in terms of transparency. by faith or community within faith traditions. Of particular interest are the roles that religious institutions and communities play in working for peace. and by country. Capacity weaknesses and a lack of well adapted systems are partly responsible. Positive examples include Buddhist movements working largely through peaceful social protest and criticism in both Thailand and Cambodia. Nahdlatul Ulama and Muhammadiyah. and the Catholic peacebuilding movement in Philippines. have initiatives that are explicitly designed to promote good governance and government accountability.
23 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 .
and Islam into the newly independent state. Jewish. Indonesian nationalism. part of a pattern of increasing trade. Local realties and contexts have a strong influence on the range and scope of their activities. ending Dutch rule but continuing foreign occupation. and other Christian). The Dutch established the Dutch East India Company. The country’s Muslim population divides roughly along two differing strains: “modernists. By the 16th century. with secular organizations. and specific examples of faith-inspired organizations that are working independently. it was established as the dominant religion practiced by most of the population with the notable exception of the island of Bali. strung across 5.22 Most Indonesian Muslims practice Sunni Islam. Hindus remain a majority to this day. and 2 percent Hindu. and when the company went bankrupt. 2) humanitarianism. and the country with the largest Muslim population. and with governments. and “traditionalists. Islam first arrived in Indonesia during the 11th century. After the Allied victory in 1945.000 kilometers. 3 percent Roman Catholic. the Japanese invaded and later occupied Indonesia.” who adhere to strict scriptural interpretations (though some participants at the December 2009 consultation in Cambodia suggested that the distinction between the two strains is steadily diminishing). the Netherlands formally established the Colony of the Dutch East Indies in 1800. The lists of organizations are far from exhaustive. Those organizations listed are the most well known and active. 3) nationalism expressed in the unity of Indonesia.” who emphasize personal It was during the 16th century that European traders first came to the archipelago in search of spices. During World War II. 4) consultative democracy. while political and historical particularities shape the environment in which faith-inspired organizations operate. Indonesia is comprised of 13. interpretation of the Qur’an while embracing modern learning and concepts. Of its roughly 245 million. despite the Netherlands’ attempt to regain control of the country. To balance different political factions.700 islands. There. the nationalist leader Sukarno (born Kusno Sosrodihardjo) declared independence and was appointed president. as the number of faith-inspired organizations involved in development work is vast. The country sections summarize information on the country contexts where faithinspired organization operate. approximately 88 percent are Muslim. across faiths. with about one percent a wide range of other faiths (Buddhist. maintaining control until World War II. Seeking to incorporate elements of Marxism. as well as smaller organizations known to be making a substantial difference in the communities where they work. | 2010 . traditional indigenous religions. with a Shia population of between one and three million. 25 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS he following sections examine in greater detail the involvement of faith-inspired organizations in Southeast Asia. he implemented an ideology dubbed “guided democracy” along with martial law. 6 percent Protestant. largely rural population. Sukarno established the unique “five principles” of Pancasila: 1) belief in one supreme God. The number working in the region is easily in the thousands. third largest democracy. the challenges they face.Part 3 Country Case Studies T Indonesia Historical Overview The world’s fourth most populous. and 5) social justice.
General Suharto. Indonesia has moved quite steadily towards more democratic systems since then. heresy and blasphemy. for example trouble registering marriages and births. cities have passed legislation restricting the rights of women and certain religious minorities. however.27 The World Bank highlights that in addition to limits imposed by financial resources. however. among others. In 2004. Protestantism.” Aceh is the only province that can legally implement Sharia law (non-Muslims are exempt). these schools typically suffer from a lack of resources and weak capacity. although religious minorities. at all levels. which follows from the Kecamatan Development Program begun in 1998. and Confucianism. especially technical assistance. to strengthen moderate madrasahs. which are explicitly forbidden. Development has been uneven across Indonesia’s geographic regions. It does. Indonesia underwent an era of economic growth. The government requires all citizens to note their religion on state-issued identity cards. shortly after the devastating tsunami in 2004. have faced discrimination. ranking 111 out of 182 countries measured. Hinduism.25 Some reports suggest that taxes are higher for building churches than they are for mosques. Catholicism.24 are given due notice by the government when drafting legislation and formulating policy. Proselytizing is strictly forbidden in The Guidelines for the Propagation of Religion. This ushered in an authoritarian New Order government. its Human Development index is 0. During his tenure. Indonesia is hampered by a lack of effective procedures and accountability in institutions across most sectors.26 Development Challenges Indonesia has made significant strides in development. The notable exceptions to the freedom of religion are traditionalist and animist religions of Indonesia. and article 156 of the criminal code describes proselytization as “spreading hatred.30 Corruption in the public sector. the government does recognize this right. Buddhism. the government cracked down on hard-line Muslim groups. with the support of the United States ousted Sukarno and became president in 1968. particularly in overall economic growth. inefficient systems as well as inadequacies in teacher qualifications. oppose many of the laws derived from strict interpretations of Sharia and elected more moderate Muslim legislators to office in 2009. which are particularly important to the education of girls (who make up a large part of madrasahs’ student bodies). Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono became Indonesia’s first directly elected president. Religion and Government Indonesia’s constitution states that “the nation is based upon belief in one supreme God. Muslim religious leaders. Indonesia has relatively low health and infrastructure development indicators. however. with substantial international community support.29 USAID specifically provides support.734. instituting strict anti-terrorism laws. still face multiple development challenges. the Asian Financial Crisis had devastating effects on Indonesia’s economy in 1997. The Jakarta government granted this right after a struggle with the separatist Free Aceh Movement (GAM). the government recognizes only six religions: Islam. In 2007 almost half of the country’s population lived below or only slightly above the national poverty line.G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y The then-head of the army. is widely seen as a central challenge for Indonesia. The World Bank’s National Program for Community Empowerment Mandiri (PNPM). and Suharto resigned in 1998. Many Christians and Christian organizations report official discrimination by the government. effective teaching methods.” while at the same time. 28 The government. Local legislators and large parts of the population. is investing heavily in the Ministry of Education’s Strategic Plan (RENSTRA). school management. though other BERKLEY CENTER | 26 .” Generally. and community involvement have all adversely affected the quality of basic education (despite a generally impressive 94 percent enrollment rate for 7–12 year olds). notably the Council of Indonesian Ulama (MUI). and clearly falls within the lower middle income category of nations today. notably Christian minorities. it accords “all persons the right to worship according to their own religion or belief. Officially. In the area of education. Following the 2002 nightclub attack in Bali and the 2003 and 2009 hotel bombings in Jakarta.23 Though the government is officially secular. and many localities will only accept one of the six recognized religions.
ant. each realizing the benefits of the other. Compared to secular organizations during this time. services.” or kelaurga maslahah. Muhammadiyah has integrated HIV prevention and stigma reduction materials into certain curricula at Islamic middle schools. Suharto slowly improved relations with modernist Muslims and went on hajj to Mecca in 1991. Muhammadiyah also worked with USAID on a community-based public health response to the outbreak of avian influenza in mid-2006. Religious Institutions. support from religious organizations is often crucial to successfully implementing development projects. With the United States. There is a clear recognition that community development strategies succeed best when done in close consultation with local religious leaders.”31 as part of increasing citizen participation in local governance throughout Indonesia. Observers offer a number of reasons for this warming of relations. the government was largely unsuccessful in its campaign. the New Order regime passed the Mass Organizations Law that required NGOS to file reports so that the government could monitor their activities. the National Family Planning Coordinating Committee took on an ambitious program. civil society and religious groups began to flourish under the new title of Self-Reliance Groups. religious organizations often seemed able to accomplish more in terms of social and economic development. with many large scale industries vying for timber. one being Suharto’s realization that many government policies required religious leaders’ sanction to be effective. Two examples highlight the importance of religious support for public policy measures. USAID works with Muhammadiyah and Aisyiah (a major Islamic women’s social activist organization) to promote the principle of democratic pluralism as an “Islamic value. Nahdlatul Ulama (NU). In March 2003. the government and religious organizations have generally strong relations. Health challenges include relatively high infant and under-five mortality. It was not until NU approved of the program that it was effectively implemented. and an increasing rate of HIV/STD infection. NU and Aisyiyah (young women’s association within Muhammadiyah) were central to helping implement a joint Indonesian government/USAID immunization program against polio. and NGOs Suharto’s regime discouraged both religious and secular NGOs. Currently. To address some of these issues. campaigned aggressively against contraception and family planning programs.35 More recently. putting the island archipelago at a heightened risk of extreme weather and rising sea levels. During the 1970s. a high incidence of neo-natal and reproductive health problems for women. 27 The Government. though the struggle to harmonize rapid industrialization and sustainable development has proven arduous. though as groups began to reach out to international networks. consequently displacing small farmers and communities from their land.33 Recently. Suharto’s New Order emphasized birth control and family planning as integral components of its development programs. the kyais (experts in Islam) stating it was against the will of God. The government appreciates the reach and deep roots of religious organizations in society and their ability to influence policies.34 Furthermore. the government became increasingly intoler- BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 . fearing that they would incite anti-government sentiment or become too powerful (particularly those advocating agrarian reform and human rights).is one of the largest-scale community development schemes in the world designed to promote good governance and alleviate poverty. as opposed to family planning. At the same time. Deforestation contributes to climate change as well. Rapid industrialization has put pressure on the country’s extensive forests. Indonesia’s largest Muslim organization. Coupled with many Indonesians distrust of the United States and fears that family planning was a creative way of stemming Muslim growth. as well as a related lack of capacity in the health sector. In the initial phases of the family planning campaign.32 In general. The Ministry of Religious Affairs worked with religious organizations to shape the message of family planning in a way that was understandable to the Indonesian population. these problems stem from lack of access to adequate health facilities. and information. In 1985. NU released a fatwa advocating “family welfare. the environment and climate change has attracted attention as a priority development challenge. Islamic development organizations such as Muslim Aid have advocacy programs that promote Islamic views on the environment.
211 senior high schools. founded the Wahid Institute. especially in rural areas. In addition to the standard academic curriculum approved by the Ministry of Education. approximately one million Muslim and non-Muslim students. NU operates both secular and religious schools: 8. the government maintains tight oversight of religious organizations. or Islamic boarding schools. Both organizations have far-ranging social development programs. secular. in collaboration with Caritas. Many provide primarily disaster relief for large-scale natural disasters. Most collaborate with secular and Muslim groups as well as with other Christian organizations. World Vision also has an active chapter in the country and is actively engaged in interfaith work with Muslim organizations. former President of Indonesia and of NU. international Christian organizations seem able to work well in the country.861 Islamic elementary schools. Sumatra. Though there are numerous examples of partnerships and some degree of cooperation.522 kindergartens.000 pesantrens. 44 universities and 23 academies/ colleges. There are about 13. In 2003. microfinance development. pesantrens also provide religious education. There are two different styles of schools in the Muhammadiyah system. Muslim elders confirmed that vaccines were halal and used Friday prayers and Mosque loudspeakers to encourage families to immunize their children.38 NU is also indirectly involved in the majority of Indonesia’s Islamic boarding schools. Prominent figures in both organizations have worked to promote interfaith cooperation on development projects. In addition to disaster relief and recovery.36 Faith-inspired organizations have a central role in providing education. but others are committed to longer-term development goals. and women’s rights.000 schools throughout the country. and religious pesantrens which typically include religious curriculum. notably in their involvement and sponsorship of educational institutions.G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y polio appeared in Indonesia. NU members are found primarily in the more rural areas of Java. is one of the largest and most active. both house women’s groups and youth movements and operate health clinics.37 Muhammadiyah’s followers are largely concentrated in the urban areas of Java. also partners with numerous local Christian. Similarly. BERKLEY CENTER | International Faith-Inspired Organizations International Christian organizations implement a substantial amount of overseas aid. Nadlhatul Ulama and Muhammadiyah Two Muslim religious organizations dominate the realm of social and charitable organizations in Indonesia: Muhammadiyah. A large number of Christian organizations work in Indonesia. Catholic Relief Services. and outer islands of Indonesia. in 2004. a Dutch Catholic organization. some communities expressed concerns about vaccines being developed using pork derivatives. former leader of Muhammadiyah Ahmad Syafi’i Maarif founded the Maarif Institute for Culture and Humanity with a core mission to develop interfaith dialogue. 733 Islamic junior high schools. healthcare. for 28 . 197 elementary schools. whose 30 million members are mostly modernists. those primarily secular in curriculum. the late Abdurrahman Wahid. 3. During the campaign. notably with Muhammadiyah. and Muslim organizations. and 212 Islamic senior high schools. throughout Indonesia. and Nahdlatul Ulama. largely on the island of Madura. and the majority of large organizations provide assistance to people irrespective of faith or creed. many organizations are involved in long-term healthcare and sanitation projects. MCC/IIP partnered with NU and Aisyiyah to conduct social mobilization in support of routine immunization. which among other goals aims to develop dialogue between spiritual and political leaders in the Western world and Muslim societies. Both NU and Muhammadiyah stress the importance of pluralism and religious tolerance. whose 40 million members are mostly traditionalists. With only between 1 and 2 percent of the country’s GDP going to education (according to USAID). The four districts of Madura Island were identified by Indonesia’s National Expanded Program for Immunization (EPI) for support under the Millennium Challenge Corporation’s Indonesia Immunization Project (MCC/IIP). In addition to their heavy role in education. Cordaid. Despite some religious tensions. including non-Muslim organizations. 378 junior high schools. focusing on a range of development issues including disaster recovery. the involvement of both organizations is clearly crucial. Muhammadiyah operates over 12.
obligations. personnel. Information from “Girls’ and Women’s Education in Indonesia” UNESCO Bangkok Office: http://www. At the same time.Islamic Relief Indonesia has a large presence. Family law in Indonesia is largely governed by the Sharia-based family law for Muslims. Some estimates show that slightly more than half of the roughly 5. particularly through pesantrens. there is a large gender gap within the governmental school system with girls dropping out of junior and high schools at much higher rates than their male counterparts. Indonesia is seen as a leader in pioneering women’s rights. http://www. Indonesia.org/fileadmin/user_upload/appeal/gender/indonesia. The disaster management committee activates immediate responders in the disasters. In 2004. Foreign missionaries must obtain religious worker visas. Christian missionaries have been seen handing out Bibles along with disaster aid and relief supplies. the government introduced the Religious Harmony Bill. A number of organizations. The official State Ministry of Women’s Empowerment reported in 2004 that 90 percent of women and 25 percent of men experienced sexual harassment in the workplace. The numbers of female kyias. often through the lens of Islam.unesco. Though proselytizing is strictly prohibited by law. development aid and relief have become synonymous with religious missionaries. Such activities can create tensions with faith-inspired and secular development organizations. and prohibitions against celebrating a religious holiday or entering a house of worship that did not reflect one’s Women’s Rights and Faith-Inspired Organizations In the Muslim world. Muslim Aid has also done substantial work on both disaster relief and conflict related programming in Aceh. Both NU and Muhammadiyah have active women’s groups dedicated to promoting women’s rights and involvement in the community. which outlined strict segregation of religious communities. In Aceh and Sumatra. one being The Fahmina Institute. as seen in the aftermath of earthquakes in 2009. for example. and it is difficult to get divorced. for in some communities. and foreign religious organizations must obtain permission from the Ministry of Religious Affairs to provide any type of assistance (in-kind. State and national law aver that women and men have equal rights.pdf UNESCO Regional Conference on Inclusive Education: Major policy issues in the Asia-Pacific region Bali. Founded initially to explore and promote women’s rights in pesantrens. scholars. and pesantrens are increasingly focused on promoting female empowerment through religious teaching. many women say it is difficult to refuse their husbands taking more than one wife. For example.7 million students in madrasahs are girls.unescobkk. Still. and teachers of religion and the Qur’an are growing. penalties for interreligious marriage. or financial) to local religious groups.org/fileadmin/user_upload/Inclusive_Education/Reports/bali_08/ 29 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 Box 2 . are devoted to exploring women’s rights and issues.39 Interfaith Cooperation and Conflict Interreligious cooperation among Muslim and Christian NGOs has increased markedly over the past few decades with the Indonesian government recently embracing a more receptive stance. most notably in West Sumatra on account of frequent earthquakes and other natural disasters.ibe. though legally they must consent. the Fahmina Institute has become a large and influential organization. It also challenges increasing collaboration and coordination among faith-inspired organizations. and opportunities. particularly in Aceh and other areas where Sharia law has been implemented. 29–31 May 2008. Women throughout the country can report cases of unfair treatment. Many faith-inspired organizations have components or projects specifically devoted to women and gender rights. and within the communities themselves. depriving women of some rights men enjoy. a few Christian organizations still actively promote their religion within their aid programs. women’s participation in development and civil society must not conflict with their role in improving family welfare and education.
and 5 percent Muslim (concentrated in Mindanao). footwear.300. and 30 percent of nurses practice in rural areas). many religious groups. Nationalist People’s Coalition. with prominent parties including Lakas-Kampi Christian Muslim Democrats. religious organizations united under the banner of the Advocates for Intercommunity Relations and convinced community leaders to lobby the Ministry of Religious Affairs to reject the bill.” As previously noted. chemicals. environmental problems. former leader of Muhammadiyah Ahmad Syafi Maarif founded the Maarif Institute for the fundamental purpose of developing interfaith dialogue. In 2006. in contrast to the rest of Indonesia. is engaged with these issues in ways that show promise for sustainable.44 and high population growth (the country’s projected 2009 population was 91. The Philippines’ main industries are electronics assembly. Muslims and Christians have historically tense relations in some parts of the country. garments. Muhammadiyah and World Vision set an example of Muslim and Christian organizations cooperating closely around development programs.42 a lack of high quality social services in rural areas (for example. including faith-inspired organizations. petroleum products. dentists and pharmacists. coconut oil.G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y own religion. 30 . Though the country still struggles with poverty. an estimated 33 percent of the population lived below the Philippines’ poverty threshold. who also founded the Wahid Institute to “seed plural and peaceful Islam.3 percent in 2007 to 3. notably on the island of Sulawesi in Maluku and North Maluku. garments. pharmaceuticals.40 NU has its own International Peace Forum. and fishing. founded by Abdurrahman Wahid. where there have been cases of interethnic and religious conflict over the past decade.46 BERKLEY CENTER | Philippines The Philippines is extraordinarily dynamic in its social.45 up from 48 million in 1980 and over 66 million in 1990). it disproportionately affects the more rural southern part of the country. Issues that contribute to rural poverty include: inadequate expenditure on rural infrastructure (infrastructure represents a small portion of the Philippines’ GDP. Force of the Philippine Masses. civil society in the Philippines today is vibrant and dynamic. 2. and United Opposition. The country has a very active multiparty political system. NU and Muhammadiyah joined the Council of Churches in condemning the bill. are taking active steps to encourage interfaith harmony. GDP has fluctuated somewhat in recent years. marking one of the first occasions that Muslim groups not only actively addressed interfaith issues in the public sphere. transport equipment.000. The Pura Dalem Jawa Hindu Temple in Bunutin Village for example. while its main exports are semiconductors and electronic products. petroleum refining. After weathering two successive colonial regimes and the repressive dictatorship of Ferdinand Marcos from 1965 to 1986. Thus. 68 percent do not have access to land other than their residence. Struggle of Filipino Democrats. as a symbol of unity and common humanity. along with the government.8 percent in 2002). food processing. and political landscape. cultural. income inequality—the richest 10 percent have 20 times that of the poorest 10 percent). placing it as a lower-middle income country. but did so alongside Christian organizations. only 10 percent of doctors. and fruits. copper products. in celebration of centuries of both Muslim and Hindu presence on the island. painted with World Vision colors.41 Despite these positive developments. civil society. Nacionalista Party. Distinctive in its religious demographics (particularly in the context of Asia).43 inequitable land and income distribution (of those working in agriculture. Liberal Party. positive advances. Tensions have also flared in Bali (notably the 2002 nightclub bombing in the tourist district of Kuta). it has the world’s third largest Catholic population and a significant Muslim minority. which. poverty in the Philippines is predominantly rural. 12 percent Christian of other denominations. In response. wood products. Its per capita GDP is $3. is 90 percent Hindu. Socio-Economic Background The Philippines’ nearly 92 million people are approximately 81 percent Roman Catholic.8 percent in 2009. offers space for Muslim ablutions and has hosted numerous interfaith exchanges. Although its characteristics differ by region.983. and armed conflicts that have persisted for decades. 20 percent of medical technicians. and the pace of growth is down from a high of 7. Muhammadiyah recently built a school along with World Vision and posted the Muhammadiyah symbol on the school. People’s Reform Party. In the face of violence.
and most Muslims (or “Moros. The conflict has contributed ficking from Mindanao. Throughout more than three decades of conflict in the province. i s “Philippinized” (a term coined by historian John Leddy Phelan). the quality of life in the conflict-affected provinces of Mindanao is the worst in the Philippines. To date. the largest indigenous religious organization in the country. or Philippine Independent Church (which maintains full communion with the Episcopal Church of the United States). President of the Ulama League of the Philippines. At the recommendation of the government and the MNLF. Many native Philippine Protestant denominations tend to be restorationist and non-Trinitarian in outlook.Religion in the Philippines C a t h o l i c i s m . but the situation is even more pronounced in Mindanao. The stretching of health resources has been particularly acute for the pregnant and recent mothers among the displaced. and the World Food Program Reports that over 50 percent of the population lives below the national poverty line.000 people have been killed. such as the fiesta celebrating the day of a town’s (or barangay) patron saint are central to the culture of many Filipinos. and economic development. with emphasis on certain faith aspects that resonate with Philippine heritage. The organization has issued joint statements calling for the government and Moro separatist organizations to work towards a constructive peace. where the incidence of child labor and recruitment into gangs is particularly high for boys. In 2008. particularly as adolescents in conflictaffected areas leave school early to provide for their families. education. such as the Iglesia ni Cristo (Church of Christ). many Catholic observances are blended with native folk traditions. t h e m a j o r i t y re l i g i o n t o d a y. more than 160. Today. The overall dropout rate for Mindanao is 23 percent. The Aglipayan Church. The conflict has contributed to difficulties in education. Males are more disadvantaged than their female counterparts in access to education throughout the Philippines. however. Box 3 Mindanao: Conflict and Development One of the foremost development challenges facing the Philippines is the conflict in Mindanao. as is reported by the United States Department of State. and nearly 2 million have been displaced. The BUC has facilitated the Imams-Priests-Pastors Dialogue. President Arroyo asked the BUC to direct a “deep consultative ➤ 2010 to an increase in internal and international human traf- 31 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | . According to the United Nations Development Program Human Development Report for 2008/2009. the BUC has held 35 dialogues on common concerns about the peace process in Mindanao and related themes. Health concerns include a lack of adequate healthcare facilities and basic amenities such as clean drinking water and are compounded by forced displacement. claims 5 percent of the population. Davao City Archbishop Fernando Capalla and Mahid Mutilan. the majority of the Muslim population is concentrated in the southern island of Mindanao. Those belonging to smaller Christian denominations constitute a significant proportion of the population. founded the Bishops-Ulama Conference (BUC) in 1996 to advance peace and interreligious understanding between Muslims and Christians in Mindanao. the highest in the Philippines. Latin-Catholic traditions. often condemning specific acts of violence.47 Islam is the oldest non-native religion in the Philippines and was introduced to the southern islands in 1350.” a term employed by Spanish colonizers which Philippine Muslims now use to selfidentify) belong to ethnic minority groups. a series of seminars-workshops on interreligious dialogue and peaceful coexistence in communities and schools that encourages participation in the government-sponsored Mindanao Week of Peace. Some families in rural areas who have lost land and other economic means due to the conflict have turned to sending their young children out of their communities to be domestic workers. The development impact on society has been equally severe in areas including health. Faith-inspired organizations have played a particularly central role in responding to the conflict.
and networking for peacebuilding and economic development. and Soka Gakkai. 32 . Muslim Aid. At the government level. Grassroots and local initiatives focusing on interfaith solutions to conflict and development are widespread and an integral component of the development strategy in Mindanao. Adventist Development and Relief Agency. nutrition. It helps fund a variety of activities. however. Lutheran World Relief. including: interfaith dialogue groups (grassroots and otherwise). such as Women of Faith in Dialogue and the aforementioned BUC. the World Conference of Religions for Peace.” Religion. and development programming aimed at engaging Christian and Muslim communities in projects together. It is with these and subsequent agricultural and economic efforts by non-Catholic churches that rural development efforts truly began in the Philippines. community organizing. With the rise of the communist movement in rural areas in the 1920s and 1930s.Box 3 (continued) process” to formulate a plan for enduring peace in Mindanao. Among the specific projects Ummah Fi Salam and SPI have undertaken jointly to address these issues have been interfaith workshops for low-income urban community groups. interfaith community events. which pursued social reforms and equal rights for Filipinos under the Spanish colonial government. G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y The Mindanao coalition of NGO networks (MINCODE— comprised of 12 NGO members) is one such mechanism. capacity-building through seminars and workshops. human rights and community development advocacy. State Department’s 2009 Religious Freedom Report on the Philippines stated that the government “generally respected religious freedom in practice. healthcare. The range of organizations working is vast.” funded by the British organization Christian Aid. stated that “to broaden participation. peace education institutions and the integration of peace education into school curricula. religious organizations such as the Catholic Women’s Organization contributed to welfare efforts. mass interfaith mobilizations in support of access to employment and services. these.S. At the conference. Jesuit Refugee Service. and advocacy against housing demolition. Alberto Romulao. and later some were established to oppose Spanish rule.48 Cofradías (religious brotherhoods) were established to fulfill broader social and community support functions. Out of the cofradías grew the Propaganda Movement. World Vision. is regularly invoked by government leaders and is evident in public monuments such as the statue of the Virgin Mary that is part of the shrine to the Epifano de los Santos Avenue (EDSA) movement which ousted Ferdinand Marcos. attended by President Arroyo. Dr. | Faith and Public Life The Philippines constitution guarantees freedom of religion. and the U. Other international faith-inspired organizations working in Mindanao include: the Mennonite Central Committee. During the time of the American colonial government. the Church sought to directly engage peasant farmers’ social and economic plight in order to counter communist affiliation among this demographic. sanitation programs. with established local coordinating bodies recognizing the intrinsic faith component to the conflict. program works in the areas of interfaith dialogue. led by the native intellectual vanguard. the Philippines hosted the Special Non-Aligned Movement Ministerial Meeting on Interfaith Dialogue and Cooperation for Peace and Development (under the auspices of the United Nations). Secretary of Foreign Affairs. support for impoverished Muslim families through leadership. particularly Christianity. we must institutionalize a program that will recognize grassroots [interfaith] initiatives. on March 16. education. functioned primarily to serve the elite. functioning since 1992. alongside secular domestic organizations and American NGOs. Most welfare organizations in the Philippines during the colonial periods grew out of the Catholic Church and related religious orders. 2010. to implement a multifaceted interfaith program entitled “Building Darusalam (Peace Communities).” One grassroots endeavor that has made particular strides in interfaith collaboration for peace and development is between the Muslim organizations Ummah BERKLEY CENTER Fi Salam (whose name means “Community for Peace”) and the Catholic organization Socio-Pastoral Institute (SPI). The Catholic Relief Services is one of the most engaged international faith-inspired organizations in addressing the conflict and its development impact.
| . and although they are subject to the oversight of the Securities and Exchange Commission. Catholic bishops advocated for a more comprehensive and vigorous extension of the measure. The CBCP has revived a task force to monitor closely the implementation of the law to ensure that the government appropriates 2010 its agreed upon budget allocation to land distribution. constituting about half of the country’s farmland. along with Catholic leaders. In 1987 the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines’ (CBCP) National Secretariat of Social Action. Justice and Peace organized a “Campaign for a Genuine Agrarian Reform Program. The role of the Catholic Church in public affairs. With the expiration of this law in 2008. and Development The Philippines is a host to myriad development actors. from 1972 to 2006.9 million hectares of private and public lands.49 As examples. and is intended to distribute land to millions of poor farmers. Faith. about two-fifths of the agricultural population. In 1988. with particularly active contributions from faith-inspired organizations. Partly because of the government’s sensitivity to popular demand and pressure. In numerical terms. have been redistributed to 3 million rural poor households. the Catholic Church hierarchy and Church-related organizations including the Institute on Church and Social Issues and the Bishops-Businessmen’s Conference for Human Development lent support to peasant organizations on agrarian reform advocacy. and Agrarian Reform Civil society has had particular success in the Philippines in the area of agrarian reform. 5. In recent years. as well as forming the backbone of the “people power” movement. and civil initiative following the Marcos regime. Working in concert with pressure exerted by reformist politicians. NGOs. the Catholic hierarchy (led by Bishop Arturo Bastes and others) has been involved in protests opposing mining operations on the island of Rapu-Rapu and in the southern island of Mindanao. the Catholic Church. The Catholic Church has also taken a role in environmental action. Fidel Ramos (president from 1992–1998) involved civil society in the Mindanao peace initiative (particularly in engag33 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS Civil society is extraordinarily active and diverse in the Philippines. including development is marked. Although the Arroyo administration has not been a strong proponent of land reform. In 1981. the World Bank argues that. Organized groups in the Philippines fall into two legal categories: NGOs and communitybased organizations known as People’s Organizations (POs). Following the Vatican II reforms in the 1960s. and also passed a resolution calling for the repeal of the Mining Act of 1995. the Philippines has achieved a significant level of partial land reform. 2009. the Philippines has one of the most robust and advanced civil societies in the developing world. civil society groups have secured the expropriation and redistribution of contested private estates to landless and near-landless peasants. both international and national. No prior permission is required to establish an NGO. government records state that as of 2006. in the midst of national protests. and in Mindanao. the Muslim minority is active in promoting social development and peace building efforts. and the legal controls over the establishment and oversight of NGOs are less stringent than most other East and Southeast Asian countries. Basic Christian Communities (local groups that discuss and take action on their social concerns) organized by the Diocese of Boac began to protest the impacts on fishing and health caused by Marcopper Mining Company’s illegal dumping of tailings into Calancan Bay. POs and NGOs played crucial roles in bringing Spanish and American colonial rule to an end. the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) released an influential pastoral letter urging action to counter environmental degradation. NGOs are intermediaries between POs and the state.” although the resulting Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law of 1988 produced very little new reform and land distribution because of the influence of large landowners in Congress.Box 4 Civil Society. actual supervision is limited. Civil Society. An extension passed and was signed into law on August 7. The country has more NGOs per capita than any other country in Asia. that overthrew the Ferdinand Marcos’ dictatorship in 1986.
In 2009 alone. President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo’s advisor for global warming and climate change. These NGO networks tend to be characterized by horizontal cooperation. aquatic reform and fisheries. It employs innovative environmental mapping techniques to facilitate ecological sustainability in: natural resource management. Inc. engages in community environmental education as it relates to waste management and other issues. the issue of climate change is very real. 2004–2010. | ing poor communities) and in national policy formation. a number of NGO networks and coordination mechanisms have been formed. Denmark) should respond to G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y the targets of the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change. and current president Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has included NGOs in the formulation and implementation strategy for the Medium-Term Philippine Development Plan. is active on several fronts. President Arroyo enacted a new law that established a Climate Change Commission (CCC). rural development. and . located in Laguna.000 NGOs (including faith-inspired organization) in total.Box 5 Environmental Call for Action In recent years and months. Christian NGO Dalan sa Kalambuan (DALSAKA). and international development assistance. comprised of one national NGO. provides environmental education. Thus. These storms were more severe than the Philippines had seen in years and exhibited unusual patterns in their geographic incidence as well as the time of year they occurred. (BBK). and constituent members of the networks are typically very engaged in the decision making processes. In the absence of a national land use inventory for nearly 20 years. The National Coalition for Urban Transformation (NCUT) was formed from organizations within the Alliance of Christian Development Agencies (ACDA) which works with Roman Catholic and Muslim organizations and leaders and counts among its activities the promotion of environmental advocacy through education. Environmental Science for Social Change (ESSC). 34 as opposed to vertical hierarchy. 2009. the Philippine government has kept pressure on foreign governments to ratify a new treaty to reduce greenhouse gasses. to coordinate action plans to prepare the country for extreme weather and integrate climate change initiatives into broader policies. Faith-inspired organizations are active in addressing key ecological issues. To help make NGO efforts more efficient and organized. in particular barangay (or district level) development planning. and anti-corruption and good governance. addressing economic growth and job creation. social justice and basic needs. upland development. PHILDHRRA (Philippine Partnership for the Development of Human Resources in Rural Areas) focuses on agrarian reform. The Philippine government is also taking steps of its own to combat climate change. development planning and policy. In Central Mindanao. Similarly. which posits a 25 percent to 40 percent cut in emissions from 1990 levels to prevent irreversible climate change by 2050. Its member congregations have also endorsed political candidates based upon their support for ecological or other development policies. among other community development initiatives. For the Philippines. CODE-NGO (The Caucus of Development NGO Networks) is one of the largest NGO networks. typhoons caused a landslide BERKLEY CENTER which killed 250 in April and at least 240 died in flooding due to a typhoon in late September. to facilitate and foster interfaith cooperation on environmental responsibility. The Jesuit organization. stated that the UN Conference of Parties (which met in December 2009 in Copenhagen. On October 23. seven national networks. trade and investment. Buklod Biyayang Kristiyano. Heherson Alvarez. Its member networks each have particular foci. faith-inspired organizations have been instrumental in bridging the grassroots and policy levels on the environment. education and youth. given the link experts have drawn to recent weather-caused disasters that have struck the island nation. the organization’s resource monitoring efforts have helped guide local policy and regional agencies to facilitate water and nutrient resource sustainability in the highland areas of the country. and two regional networks—about 3. ESSC also engages Christian and Muslim communities in Southern Mindanao in the local government planning processes.
The Catholic Church and Contraception The official position of the Catholic Church in the Philippines has been to oppose contraception of any kind. having attained a predominantly Filipino clergy by the 1990s (at the Vatican’s encouragment). working alongside a multitude of faith-inspired NGOs. the Church opposed the Reproductive Health and Population Development Act of 2008. It also has extensive network of parochial schools. and some of the latter have been among those who have contributed land for build sites. many of which are attentive to the connections between education and poverty. PHILSSA (Partnership of Philippine Support Service Agencies) focus on urban land reform. Although smaller in numbers. The Catholic Church. and livelihood. which would require governments at all levels to provide free or low-cost reproductive services. Even though the Church holds great influence over the views of many Filipinos. NATCCO (National Confederation of Cooperatives): cooperatives.010 houses in Peace and Development Communities (PDCs). relief and rehabilitation. a viewpoint at odds with many in civil society and the development community. following heated debate among legislators. the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF). in which interfaith housing builds are held in areas where there has previously been violent conflict that saw many people of both faiths lose their homes. according to a Pulse Asia poll conducted in October 2008. the Peace Build program (funded by the European Commission). NCSD (National Council on Social Development) focuses on social welfare and development. organizing low-income urban areas. but expired after the congressional session ended. such as in August and September of 2008. in cooperation with other organizations. under Peace Build. has embraced social and economic development work throughout the country. By September 2008. excluding abortion. as well as the local imam and even the former Miss Universe were among the signatories to the peace covenant establishing the framework for the program. particularly in trying to foster economic self-reliance among structurally disadvantaged segments of the population and promoting peaceful coexistence in pluralistic communities. Faith-inspired organizations are active members of all these networks. 2010 Catholic Bishop’s Conference of the Philippines has social forestry. There are many 35 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | . while the encouraged Filipinos to vote against political candidates favoring any government support for contraception in the May 10. The faith-inspired NGO community is a vibrant and important part of the broader cohort of development NGOs. Representatives from the Philippine army. the reproductive health bill is supported by 63 percent of Filipinos. Habitat for Humanity operates. the Catholic Church. reaching out in particular to poor and marginalized youth. credit. The number of Muslim faith-inspired organizations in the Philippines has grown in recent years. among others. The project aims to build at least 1. non-Catholic Christian faith-inspired organizations have been equally vigorous in their development and peacebuilding efforts. Faith-inspired organizations are active across various sectors and regions in the Philippines. different levels of government.Box 6 Box 7 Habitat for Humanity—Peace Build Program in Mindanao In Mindanao. Peace Build has included government soldiers and ex-MNLF combatants in the builds. Muslim and Christian groups have been intentional about constructive interfaith collaboration in addressing the conflict in Mindanao. the United Church of Christ. Recently. and housing. Habitat had. The bill was presented to Congress in January 2010. built and renovated over 600 houses. seeking to confront particularly severe poverty in Mindanao and calling for a peaceful political solution to the conflict there. 2010 elections. working together even in light of instances of violence. Filipino Catholic orga- nizations have forged long-term relationships with foreign Catholic faith-inspired organizations helping to increase the capacity and sustainability of the former. Advocates of the bill have affirmed that they will refile the law in the next legislative session.
advocacy for human rights and community development. creating Peace Communities. Mindanao. interfaith immersion. partners with church. The National Council of Churches in the Philippines (which includes the Catholic Church) has formed a group to combat fraud in the May 2010 elections. In Mindanao.000 homes throughout the country through 15 affiliates and 6 Local Management Councils (See Box 6). John Bosco (Roman Catholic) are two examples of Christian organizations that seek to improve the health and welfare of disadvantaged children in urban and remote. For instance. capacity building and local governance is increasingly becoming an area of interest for faith-inspired organizations. and networking for peacebuilding and development. have a crucial role to play in peacebuilding in Mindanao in particular (see Box 3). and engages in emergency disaster relief. have forged interfaith dialogues at the grassroots level throughout Mindanao. Two local faith-inspired organizations. (KMBI) is a Christian microcredit organization operating across the Philippines. World Vision. particularly at the grassroots level. The Catholic Church has shown leadership in certain reforms (see Box 1). 50 It is clear that faith-inspired organizations. local patronage and clanship-based politics further complicate the environment. and cooperative economic activities. rural areas. Kabilikat para sa Maunlad na Buhay. (RSPI) seeks to empower financially the marginalized indigenous groups of the Cordillera region. Finally. the umbrella group for Muslim NGOs in Mindanao. or Darusalam. Socio-Pastoral Institute (Christian) and Ummah Fi Salam (Muslim). Given that faith is a central component of life for large parts of the population in conflict affected regions.000 new loans worth over $1 million in loans in 2002). Inc. As a major part of development initiatives to address poverty in the country. since many elected officials do heed the views of the Church. and so effectively coordinating a unified effort to vigorously address corruption and transparency is a challenge. though it is important to note that the Church in the Philippines is not a monolithic voice in terms of its socio-political agenda. it is the most likely candidate for spearheading a conversation on these themes that would have substantive impact. government. but many draw their ideas from native Filipino faith communities and/or are sustained by local efforts. encompassing a wide range of interventions including community organizing. education. one of the most active. Catholic Relief Services. assists approximately 122. focused in particular on improving the livelihood of Filipina women. and civil society more generally. Kalinga Mula Sa Mga Anak ni Juan Florentino (Apostolic Catholic) and Daughters of Mary Help of Christians: Salesian Sisters of St. Habitat for Humanity has built over 26. faith-inspired microfinance organizations that have come about alongside secular organizations of the same kind. stressing what it sees as the interrelated nature of entreprenurial development. in addition to emergency relief. BERKLEY CENTER | Emerging Challenges Corruption and a lack of transparency at all levels of government is a significant challenge for faith-inspired organizations. and personal internal renewal. and community organizations to expand access to health services in underserved areas. Governance is one of the principal areas of programming for the Consortium of Bangsamoro Civil Society. interfaith dialogue for understanding and solidarity. already made extremely difficult by violent conflict and extreme 36 . there has been a growth of grassroots. Some of the former have origins in other countries. However. Faith-inspired organizations are quite active in interfaith dialogue and interreligious peacebuiling activities. Inc. The Christian microcredit organization Rangtay sa Pagrang-ay. Silsilah (meaning “chain” or ”link” in Arabic) Dialogue Movement is a Muslim-Christian interfaith organization founded by a Catholic priest in 1984 in Zamboanga City.G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y international religious NGOs undertaking development initiatives across the country.000 children with education needs through child sponsorship and community-based programs. community development. Another important area of focus for faith-inspired development organizations is that of children and youth. religious leaders are particularly influential in mobilizing communities scarred by religious conflict toward reconciliation and understanding. Both Christian (the Catholic Church is publicly engaged) and Muslim inspired development organizations are active on issues of governance. provides microloans to the poor (90 percent provided to women with small businesses—12. oriented toward dialogue based on a deepening of Christian and Muslim faith.
who have worked to bring their families out of extreme poverty. This discussion reflects preliminary findings of the review. notorious 37 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | .Box 8 Sister Adelia S. she secured a grant from Catholic Relief Services for $50. To a degree. before we could not even purchase milk for our children.000 small and medium scale entrepreneurs. the overall impact of their work. Thomas C. a Sister Servant of the Divine Healer. Sister Oling. in partnership with the Asia Faiths Development Dialogue (AFDD).’ I feel 2010 very satisfied indeed. the great diversity of both Muslim and Christian organizations on the island and . WFDD is investigating the development related activities of individuals and organizations that are in significant ways motivated and shaped by faith. Oling’s work to address people’s “woundedness” from poverty. WFDD is engaged in a year-long “mapping” review for Cambodia. seriousness of cooperation between the two faith communities demonstrate that there is a desire and resilience among many in Mindanao to address development needs meaningfully despite challenges posed by power dynamics. In the words of Sister Oling. and by 2006.000 and was serving 20. Primarily through an intensive set of interviews.org/news/women-religious/nun-lifts-lives-thousands Accessed 21 April 2010. In 1997.” National Catholic Reporter 13 April 2010. Oling and People’s Alternative Livelihood Foundation Sister Adelia Oling. ‘Thank you very much. but that she would turn to social action to fight poverty. but their religious character presents some distinctive features that merit both a broad survey of what they are doing and why. these organizations are part of communities and civil society more broadly. her efforts have supported more than 11. continues today. and the Foundation now operates out of Sorsogon and Zamboanga (in the southern Philippines) and has grown from a three-person operation to a staff of 109. Cambodia’s recent economic and social progress.000. “When I hear someone say. Religious traditions have played an important role in Cambodia’s history and its present. Since she began exploring ways to increase locally-grown food for economic development. “Nun lifts the lives of thousands. Nonetheless. along with the help of a priest. the development roles of the large number of faithinspired organizations that work in Cambodia are poorly understood. Cambodia faces extraordinary challenges. conducted a questionnaire “to understand how pervasive underlying poverty was keeping local residents out of the economic market. http://ncronline.” Her research found that meeting monthly expenses was a large contributor to persistent poverty and an inability to meet basic needs. a microfinance organization that provides capital to low-income people in central and southern Philippines who are unable to provide adequate collateral for conventional loans. in many instances. Sister Oling decided that simple interest in the poor was not enough.” Source: Fox. Learning about the Grameen model of microfinance from a nearby development agency. as informed by her faith. Web.000 clients. Substantial research on Cambodia’s religious heritage is available. which include growing imbalances between rich and poor. A full report should be available by August. though the shock of tumult under the Khmer Rouge (especially during the 1975–79 period) represented a sharp discontinuity from which Cambodia is still recovering. is CEO and founder of People’s Alternative Livelihood Foundation. However. 2010. taking a particular interest in microfinance. poverty. Cambodia Background Cambodia is a country of special emphasis for this exploration of intersections between religion and development and specifically the work of faith-inspired organizations. is impressive on many fronts. but now we can. Sr. her foundation had reached a credit line of over $800. However. nearly all women. given the devastation of decades of conflict and genocide. and its actual and potential contribution to building a more equitable and prosperous Cambodia. and there is lively attention to the contemporary roles of Cambodia’s particularly active civil society.
showing greater religious diversity. a range of social tensions.51 Sacred texts and some recently discovered ancient Buddhist statues date back to before 500 CE. and post conflict healing.” 2008/2009 statistics published by the Ministry of Cult and Religions in Cambodia indicate a religious profile with (out of a population of about 14 million) some 96 percent Buddhists. and the specific place for faith-inspired organizations. when Christian missionaries and aid workers flocked to the refugee camps along the Thai and Vietnamese borders. A second wave of Islamic followers arrived in the late fifteenth century. These weaknesses are linked to widespread institutional capacity challenges. However. are important questions facing Cambodia as it looks to the future. are the weaknesses of Cambodia’s education system. Perhaps foremost among the challenges. but their converts were few in number.governance and capacity weaknesses. The country’s official motto underscores the importance accorded to faith tradition: “Nation. an ethnic group thought to have immigrated as early as the fourteenth century from the Malay Peninsula or the Indonesia archipelago. thus securing a place for Christianity in Cambodian society. all religions were reborn. and the assistance provided by the multitude of Christian-based relief and development organizations. King. A wide array of organizations expanded emergency aid and relief portfolios into development activities. even before the French protectorate. individually and as a community (though it is a stretch to suggest that a faith-inspired community exists). often by death. royal circles. many Christian churches and aid organizations entered the country. including. 53 Few Cambodians practice Hinduism today.52 Hinduism gained a foothold primarily in 38 . when the Cham. for example. Faith-inspired communities and institutions are very much part of the overall development process. an increase in the number of churches. but today most Cambodians call themselves Buddhists. Buddhism had overtaken it as the major faith of the population and elites. Both Hinduism and Buddhism have ancient roots in Cambodia. Religious teachings and practices of all kinds were banned. education. owing in part to the presence of overseas missionaries. especially the Buddhist values that Cambodians view as a central feature of their social fabric and culture. The first Muslims to arrive in Cambodia were the Chvea. Cambodia has an unusually large array of faith-inspired organizations that work in virtually every sector with particular concentrations on health. which represent a diversity of traditions. The legacy of the Khmer Rouge and communist regime for Cambodia’s religions is still felt today. for example about the Millennium Development Goals.1 percent Christian. particularly amongst the younger generation. 0. many of these groups. and those found to be practicing were punished. though their origins and early history are shrouded in legend. Islam also has a long history in Cambodia. The shifting balance gives BERKLEY CENTER | G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y Cambodia’s Religious Heritage Cambodia has a rich religious heritage and many faiths are present among Cambodia’s population. given its importance for future stability. Religion. By international standards. The role that religion will play. and less than 0.”55 Lack of knowledge and of people to teach has colored a nonetheless remarkable revival of both Buddhism and Islam. especially contributing to humanitarian aid. Christianity is the fastest-growing faith tradition in Cambodia. migrated to Cambodia to escape conflict. But religious understanding. but by the latter half of the 10th century. and today focusing on education and health service delivery. traditions of ancestor worship and a strong grip of superstitions. French Catholic missionaries first came to Cambodia in the early 18th century. but Hindu traditions contributed to the uniquely Cambodian forms of Buddhism.54 Far more intensive Christian influence came after the fall of the communist regime and after 1979. is still relatively weak. where hundreds of thousands of ethnic Khmers had sought refuge. When Cambodians returned to their home provinces. Other sources give somewhat different breakdowns. A Muslim man highlighted the impact of the genocide: “after the Khmer Rouge. people from the now-extinct Champa kingdom in present day Vietnam. and environmental threats.3 percent Muslim. have not been notably part of national development planning and strategic reflection. which was decimated during the period of troubles.
Development and Buddhist Organizations Despite the wide presence of visible symbols of Buddhism. Hiek Sopheap.rise to some tensions. Sopheap says that communities are gradually beginning “to realize the important role the environment plays in their lives. ABE’s aim is straightforward: monks should demonstrate in word and action the importance of preserving the environment. ABE has championed a number of other projects. 2010 nection between Buddhism and the environment. and the Wildlife Alliance). like spirit houses in homes and shops and orange-clad monks moving in and out of the ubiquitous pagodas. USAID. Pagodas in Kampong Chhnang and Kampot provinces have been outfitted with community announcement boards to communicate important messages about environmental initiatives. Buddhist teachings and institutions do play significant and probably increasing roles and merit careful attention. and a lack of understanding about natural resource management are all working to quicken the pace of environmental degradation. The video. “When monks tell people to do something. ABE is a faith-inspired NGO in Cambodia. Hundreds of local residents have shown up at individual Satisfied that ABE’s contributions are making a difference. Nonetheless. lax regulation. BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS screenings of an ABE-produced educational video showcasing various initiatives throughout Cambodia where monks are taking an active role in environmental conservation activities. “The monks are respected by members of the community. most based in Korea and Japan.” Not only have communities learned to accept the monk’s newfound roles (some were skeptical at first because traditionally monks do not engage with communities). they listen. Conservation International. their informal structures and a lack of publicity (and fanfare) make the true magnitude and impact of their work difficult to assess. “The Buddha was born in the forest and reached enlightenment in the forest and passed away in the forest. and helped oversee the maintenance of community wells. Several international Buddhist organizations. Sopheap disrobed and is today the Executive Director of the Association of Buddhists for the Environment (ABE). this means ABE trains monks who then return to their temples and turn the grounds into a focal point for rallying the community in support of environmental issues.” After nearly 20 years in the monkhood. which leverages the influence of monks to promote environmental conservation and consciousness in a country where economic growth. with plans for more trainings. Monks have participated in the planting and ordaining of trees in forests.” says Sopheap. Moreover. While quite a wide range of local and international Buddhist-inspired organizations operate in Cambodia. constructed compost bins at Pagodas. To date. has long been interested in the interplay between his Buddhist faith and the natural environment. “The forest is life. Buddhism’s links to Cambodia’s dynamic development processes are not easy to pin down. but Cambodia prides itself on its constitutional guarantees of freedom of religion and long traditions of religious tolerance. WildAid. On the surface. the Alliance of Religions and Conservation. Buddhism appears to be little engaged with the development enterprise. which highlights the conhelped place greater attention on the need for community members to take responsibility for their environs. give financial aid to local Box 9 The Association of Buddhists for the Environment (ABE) A self-described former “socially active” monk.” explains Sopheap. In practice. ABE maintains a website (although somewhat dated) for the Sangha Network which is dedicated to helping connect Buddhist communities throughout Asia who are working to promote environmental conservation. ABE has trained over 200 monks in 21 provinces throughout Cambodia. Mustard Seed Charitable Trust UK.” (Donors past and present to ABE include the United Nations Development Programme. has 39 | . with the support of the UK-based Alliance of Religions and Conservation (ARC). community members themselves have become involved.
G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y pagodas. few other avenues exist for community members to secure funds or other resources for communal projects or individual use. working in various sectors. Notwithstanding the limited assistance provided by the committees and the support available from the structured organizations. but are often constrained by lack of financial support. and to a less obvious extent nuns. More significant are local organizations that appear to be taking increasingly active roles. The Association of Buddhists for the Environment. present day central Vietnam. among them the Islamic Local Development Organization (ILDO).” adding that monks and laypeople are “respected more because we do not announce our activities. meeting spiritual. the Cham and the Chvea. which suggests that little distinction is made between Islamic-based NGOs run by particular branches of the Muslim community.” Many development organizations. largely owing to the similarities between their ethnic group and the Cham and also for reasons of simplicity. and the Buddhism Society and Development Association. a more informal system consisting of elected committees formed around individual mosques provides an outlet for community members to request emergency assistance. recognize the benefits of engaging monks and laypeople linked to pagodas as a way to ensure the strong links to communities that are vital for development. Work is often carried out by individuals or small informal groups. and the Cambodian Islamic Association (CIA). beginning in the late 15th century. An umbrella group. Compounding the difficulty in recognizing Buddhist contributions to development is the pattern whereby formal organizations that do exist often have limited publicity. Muslim development organizations in Cambodia are often difficult to identify. owing largely to the small size and scope of their activities. and support of those already infected. As one Buddhist monk put it. Committees help where they can. Cambodian Muslim Development Foundation. A significant difficulty in measuring and evaluating social action in communities by Buddhists is their decentralization and fragmentation. There is among all who speak to Buddhism’s role a strong focus on the values that Buddhism represents. 58 Today the Cham and Chvea recognize the same supreme religious leader in Cambodia and many Chvea.57 The Chvea have long had roots in the Malay community in southern Thailand and Malaysia. This blending of the two ethnic groups as one Muslim minority corresponds with the narrative. BERKLEY CENTER | 40 . are respected authority figures in their communities. In addition to the structured organizations. particularly between older and younger generations. who came to the country from Champa. Projects focused on educating the community on health and environmental issues and providing support to persons living with HIV/AIDS (PLHA) and their families are the most common. but there are about 20 formal Muslim organizations working in Cambodia. Some argue that Buddhist faith and traditions require active engagement with the society and the corresponding actions or contributions. Monks. The role that Buddhist institutions should play in development work is actively debated today in Cambodia. acts as a coordinating body and channel for donor funds for eight Muslim development organizations. the Cambodian Islamic Youth Association (CIYA). Examples include Buddhism for Development. which range from compassion to a commitment to integrity. Like many Buddhist organizations. not material needs. Muslim organizations address a range of development issues but place particular emphasis on education and income generation activities. It is thought that the Chvea preceded the arrival in Cambodia of the Cham. Numbers are not clear. They have embarked on specific efforts to engage Buddhist structures in development work. Development and Muslim Organizations Indigenous Muslims in Cambodia fall into two ethnic groups. providing small loans and on occasion material goods. who share the same religious views but tend to live in separate villages. UNICEF has a program called The Buddhist Leadership Initiative56 that actively engages monks in community outreach surrounding HIV/ AIDS prevention and awareness. often refer to themselves as Cham. Buddhists would rather “focus on the end result. while others see Buddhism’s proper role as more removed from modern demands. One monk characterized Cambodian monks as having “salty spit”—meaning that people listen to them and act upon what they are told. both secular and faith-inspired.
and Kuwait. trafficking. Catholic Relief Services. All organizations must find ways to respond to the general capacity weaknesses and to endemic patterns of corruption. Saudi Arabia. World Relief. communications difficulties.” even if it means.59 Other organizations take the view that paying a bribe to expedite the delivery of the wheelchairs can be viewed as simply paying an express fee. children. Church World Service. the majority of faith-inspired organizations operating there today are rooted in Christian principles and beliefs. either by choice or circumstance. unlikely to have any significant impact on the overall climate and problem.” Coordination challenges are rife. for example. some Cambodians drew a distinct line between the way they perceive the work and motivations of “Christians” and Catholics. “Christians” being for the most part Protestants. but it may well be related to the quite wide perception that many Christian groups use development projects as a means for or excuse to proselytize. Virtually all the leading international Christian-inspired NGOs have active programs in Cambodia. individually. Some groups take a strong stance. education. similar to what one might part with to expedite the delivery of a package. Lack of effective dialogue among organizations or religious bodies. Voluntary coordination mechanisms emerged. notably Malaysia. BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 . Essentially. Foreign nations are also sending religious teachers to Cambodia to serve as teacher-trainers to Cambodian Muslims eager to enter the profession.Several Muslim majority countries. weak coordination mechanisms. refusing to pay any extra “fees. waiting months for a shipment of much needed wheelchairs to clear through the Customs Department. Foreign financing has contributed to the construction of mosques and Islamic boarding schools. given the generally difficult operating environment in Cambodia. a resource center and coordinating mechanism for groups working in the field of trafficking. However. The current rather poor coordination creates gaps and overlaps in the delivery of services. and income generation. there is no clear solution. This issue is especially problematic. Reasons for the divide are unclear. thereby sidestepping the issue of perpetuating a corrupt system. Christian organizations are involved in all sectors. Organizations face difficult ethical dilemmas: pay bribes or risk facing programmatic delays. One that is specifically Christian and faith linked is Chab Dai. Students who go abroad combine religious and secular studies. and several NGO coordination mechanisms took root. These are linked to generally weak institutional capacity and unclear ‘“rules of the game. creates another set of complications. because faith-inspired organizations oftentimes feel the need. Others cite the Catholic Church’s long history in Cambodia and thus deeper roots. and a tendency towards competition. For organizations operating today. since they are. environment. or are driven by their faith. some common challenges emerge. the American Friends Service Committee. The Catholic Church and its associated organizations are often described more favorably than other Christian organizations. are playing an increasingly influential role in supporting Cambodia’s Muslim community. there is merit in engaging the community in broader ongoing discussions with the government and the aid community. Cambodian Muslim students are receiving scholarships to study abroad in such places as Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. and Jesuit Refugee Services. Caritas. to exercise a certain moral code of conduct. health. It is generally appreciated that corruption is deeply embedded in Cambodia today. In discussions in Cambodia. and for some time they operated with little administrative restraint. including World Vision. which has given high priority to finding practical solutions that will improve accountability and increase the demand for good governance. For some however. Cambodia attracted large numbers of organizations in the post genocide period. accentuated by the large number of organizations. Faith-inspired organizations develop their own materials and projects based on the knowledge 41 Emerging Issues In addition to the myriad project-specific challenges that each faith-inspired organization faces (which are not dissimilar to those facing most NGOs). Christian Development Activities Although Christianity’s influence is relatively new to Cambodia. including peacebuilding. There are also a large number of smaller organizations representing an extraordinarily wide set of denominations. In addition. studying the Qur’an and Islamic practices is their sole form of education.
which serves as a high level meeting of government officials and donors. there is a plethora of local aid coordination mechanisms. with many comments about “rice Christians” or “food for faith. and for those responsible for religion. and to learn English. deeply so. The youth. What they want most is IT. completely free. the general judgment is that both coordination and networking efforts and bodies.” BERKLEY CENTER | . Relevant research and operational experience can be presented in this setting. so this is all legal and accepted. The operating environment for non-governmental organizations is changing. Inconsistencies in how organizations choose to. like World Vision and CRS. rather than building upon the experience and materials of other organizations. There is freedom of belief in Cambodia. for example. But for young people in Cambodia today that is not easy to understand. or CDCF. and the Cooperation Committee for Cambodia (CCC). What this means is that Buddhism has to work much harder to make its messages clearer. MEDiCAM. another organization operating in the same area and providing similar services might be willing to cover only their volunteers’ cost of transportation. there is no standard set of training materials for HIV/AIDS work in the country. are well tuned in to this system. with the latter subject to greater skepticism and restrictions. Cambodia is a country where special and quite intensive effort is going towards aid coordination.they have. Alongside. there are three networks that aim to address civil society coordination challenges: the NGO Forum. In addition. It is about much more. might provide sizeable per diems and motorbikes to volunteers. The government tends to make a sharp distinction between service delivery and advocacy organizations. They do not spend time on Buddhist practices and even if they do it is very superficial. The Christian churches offer English lessons. brings together government and major external development partners on a fairly regular basis. Competition for volunteers among beneficiary groups is fast becoming a major concern of organizations. University of Cambodia Professor and Ministry of Culture Secretary of State Samraing Kamsan summarizes the situation and challenges as follows: “There are problems with Christianism in Cambodia today. and they are descibed as the most effective way for them to influence policy. like the Church of Latter-day Saints and Adventists. Organizations spend time and resources creating their own HIV/AIDS curriculums and educational materials. Buddhism is not about reciting the Dharma alone. For example. They take young people on sightseeing trips. The three networks have one representative who sits in on the CDCF. on balance. So young people are attracted and they join. but the many smaller organizations largely fall outside the system. which vary in intensity and form by sector (for example. Organizations that proselytize or are seen to proselytize are also viewed with apprehension. and are able to (given limited resources) engage and build relationships with communities and volunteers inhibit the productiveness of programs. However. computers. especially young students. for the Ministry of Culture. and they offer trips overseas. are plainly inadequate to the challenge. health is particularly active). are not interested in going to the pagodas. to Angkor Wat and other places. The practical meaning of religious freedom is a topic of lively exchange today. The larger faith-inspired groups. Buddhism is part of our culture. The government chaired Cambodian Development Cooperation Forum. led by the government.” Most faith groups say that their work is clearly differentiated between service and development versus evangelical work. They have computers. While one organization. Having this freedom is part of peace and harmony. That includes groups well-known for evangelizing tendencies. Membership is voluntary for NGOs. particularly the sector working groups or sub-groups. But the trend towards joining Christian churches and the weakness of Buddhism are also worrying for us. these mechanisms represent a substantial investment and show some success. with new legislation 42 G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y aimed at better regulating civil society activity under discussion. Overall. And it has much to offer for daily life.
5 percent). Protests against the ruling party continued in early 2010. Khmers. emergency medical services. following an extended period of rising political tensions. With a GDP per capita of US$8. The Jesuit Refugee Service in Thailand.61 The official unemployment rate is among the world’s lowest (1. as well as prolonged political tensions. Many refugees have lived in the camps for 15 to 20 years. counseling. and fled to exile in Dubai. Thailand has been embroiled in a political crisis since the military coup of 2006. which contributes about 7 percent to the economy. operates refugee settlements along the border with Burma (Myanmar) and works in urban centers on education. near the top of the medium development bracket and higher than all of its neighbors. increased the exodus of Karen. but Thailand has significant religious diversity. The political intrigue and regional character of the crisis deepened in late 2009.Thailand An Overview Thailand’s rich history and culture are inextricably intertwined with Buddhism. The economic contraction was primarily caused by a decrease in global demand and a decline in investor confidence spurred on by the continued political instability. The majority of these laborers come from Burma. Poverty.6 percent) concentrated in the southern provinces. Pro-democracy demonstrations in Burma (Myanmar) in 1988.). and led to a temporary state of emergency in the capital. remains a persistent problem and a contributing factor to social conflict. Political instability has also affected the tourism industry. when former Prime Minister Thaksin was appointed advisor to the government of Cambodia. and Shan ethnic populations. thousands of Burmese live outside the camps without being recognized as refugees. but also Laos and Cambodia. he has never completely left the Thai political scene. Some 66 per- 43 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | . and numerous smaller groups. Religion influences many aspects of Thai society and life and serves as an important unifying force. with a variety of ethnic and religious influences. Anti-government street protests in April 2009 disrupted the regional ASEAN summit. Karens. Income inequality is approximately the same as the United States. Faith-inspired organizations are active in working with both refugee and migrant populations. however. legal aid. Vietnamese. following the 2006 military coup and the 2008 global financial crisis. especially the northeastern and southern provinces. refugees are still arriving to Thailand in significant numbers. The majority of the population is Buddhist. followed by the failed 1990 elections. Bangkok.400 (2008 est. and the remaining 11 percent Malays. cent of Thailand’s population lives in rural areas. including a sizable and politically active Muslim minority (4.63 Thailand also has a large (largely undocumented) migrant worker population. A nagging territorial dispute has escalated as both countries exert their claim to land near the Preah Vihear Buddhist temple.4 percent in 2008) but is rising significantly (end 2009 estimate close to 2.60 Religion is thus an integral part of Thailand’s approach to its development challenges.62 Thailand has impressive achievements to show on human development and ranks 87 on the Human Development Index. ousted from power. Thailand’s deeply respected king remains one of the only unifying figures in Thailand’s political landscape. many more live as internally displaced people in the Burmese jungle. 2010 Socio-Economic and Political Background Of Thailand’s population (estimated at 66 million). at 10 percent. and advocacy. As human rights abuses continue in Burma. The crisis began when populist multi-billionaire Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra was accused of corruption. Burmese refugees started seeking refuge in Thailand in large numbers in the late 1980s. Thailand hosts more than 143. Thailand is a middle income country. prompting diplomatic tensions between the two countries. 14 percent ethnic Chinese. Most social and political institutions are deeply rooted in Therevada Buddhist tradition. with one of the most robust economies in South East Asia. 75 percent are ethnically Thai. exemplified during recent political upheavals that affected both civil society and the upper echelons of political leadership. as well as students and pro-democracy activists to Thailand.000 Burmese refugees in camps near the Thai-Burma (Myanmar) border. for example. Karenni. social services and community development. However. Mon. The percentage of the population living below the poverty line is also relatively low. economic growth has declined sharply.
giving rise to a national and international socially engaged Buddhist movement led by prominent figures including Buddhadasa Bhikkhu and Sulak Sivaraksa (founder of the Sathirakoses-Nagapradeepa Foundation and the International Network of Engaged Buddhists—INEB). Though ethnicity is a large contributing factor to the conflict. Historically. comprised of approximately 920. where the king. churches. Taoism. Thailand’s King Bhumibol Adulyadej is the world’s the longest ruling monarch and is part of a royal lineage dating back to the 13th century. The 2007 Constitution also has a clause providing that the government must “patronize and protect Buddhism and other religions. and although officially there is not a state religion. Today. they have free access to public transportation. to fund education. The pagoda generally plays a central role in village life. China. or on the path to enlightenment. a religious sect or creed. the Evangelical Fellowship of Thailand (Protestant). There are 3. 3. provided that it is not contrary to his or her civic duties. religion is closely intertwined. as a spiritual center. Theravada Buddhism was imported from Sri Lanka. public order or good morals. . and Buddhist monks have been instrumental in reaching the poorest and most marginalized communities through their social work. and the Seventh-day Adventists. monks across the country are engaged in environmental advocacy. A separatist movement by the ethnic Malay Muslim population in the south has caused widespread violence and unrest. The 2000 census estimated that Thailand had 438. or 0. Muslims (majority Sunni) comprise 5–15 percent of Thais. in section 38: A person shall enjoy full liberty to profess a religion. the influence of Buddhism is clearly evident. a person is protected from any act of the State. and for renovation of temples. There are nine recognized tribal groups. influenced by the region’s particular history. health. and Indonesia. Thai Buddhism has a strong heritage of social engagement across a wide range of sectors and issues. or chao khao. as well as a hub for social and economic activity. and monks are given preferential treatment in society. as he continues to be viewed by many today. Depending on the figures used. Christianity. and economic and societal marginalization. as is lack of representation in the national government.000 persons who prac44 tice varied forms of Buddhism. and is a model of for social engagement across Southeast Asia and within international Buddhist networks. Cambodia. Thai Buddhism is unique among its Buddhist neighbors. a religious sect or creed or observing religious precepts or exercising a form of worship in accordance with his or her different belief from that of others.088 of them located in the 14 southern provinces. Most are ethnic Malay.644 registered mosques in 67 provinces. monks in Thailand have borne witness to the harmful societal and environmental effects of unsustainable development. A large majority of Thais are Buddhist. and spirit worship. and mosques. but the Muslim population includes descendants of immigrants from South Asia.” The government has a budget for all recognized religion. For example. among other issues of social justice. highly concentrated in the south along the Malaysian border.7 percent of the population.600 Christians. almost all Thai men are ordained as monks. notably the environment and HIV/AIDS. as was the Buddha.Religion in Thailand Religion plays a prominent role in Thai society and politics. The government recognizes five Christian organizations: the Catholic Mission of Bangkok (Roman Catholic). and he remains a unifying force. allowances for monks and clerics. At some point in their lives. Over the last few decades. was bodhisattva. and Hindu beliefs and indigenous religions figure prominently in local traditions and festivals.66 BERKLEY CENTER | G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y Socially Engaged Buddhism in Thailand The pagoda is a center of social and economic life in many communities across Thailand. Saha Christchak (Baptist). the Church of Christ in Thailand (Protestant).65 The Constitution provides for freedom of religion. In exercising the liberty referred to in paragraph one.64 Many Thais regard the king as a semi-divine figure. and observe religious precepts or exercise a form of worship in accordance with his or her belief. which is derogatory to his or her rights or detrimental to his or her due benefits on the grounds of professing a religion.
On the environmental front, monks living in the forest and rural communities (“ecology monks” as they have come to be known) have been negatively affected by various development projects, including gas pipeline construction, strip mining, and deforestation. Ecology monks trace a direct connection between the root causes of suffering (greed, ignorance, and hatred) and environmental destruction, and as such see environmental activism closely aligned with Buddhist teachings. 67 Sulak Sivaraksa is a vocal activist for the environment, publicly placing blame on international corporations and corrupt officials for unsustainable development practices. Recently, a 2006 Thai judicial ruling dropped charges against him for obstruction of the Yadana Gas pipeline in Kanchanaburi, considered by environmental groups to cause ecological and social damage in the local villages. Monks continue to “ordain” trees as well, a symbolic protest that aims to signal to loggers that the forest is a sacred place. In 2005, Phra Supoj Suwajano, a monk involved in forest protection in Chiang Mai province, was murdered, highlighting the sensitivity of social advocacy and further bringing the environmental cause of Thai monks to international attention. Thai monks have been active at the grassroots level, working on HIV/AIDS from the early days of the epidemic in the early 1990s. UNICEF and UNAIDS, recognizing the effectiveness of monk engagement, have partnered with the monk community through the Sangha Metta Project since 1997. Sangha Metta is an NGO based in Chiang Mai, which trains monks in social awareness, prevention education, social engagement, tolerance, acceptance, and spiritual support for people living with HIV/AIDS. As of 2003, about 7,000 monks, nuns, novices, community members, and youth had completed project training courses.68 The project shows good sustainability, as the Thailand Government Department of Religious Affairs has followed up with funding for HIV care projects in temples.69 The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria actively supports the engagement of monks in HIV prevention and care. The monks help to change the mindset of the predominantly Buddhist society, portraying HIV as a cultural and social issue, and not only a sexual issue, one that would preclude monks from becoming involved. As of 2007, Buddhist monks had educated over 300,000 people on HIV prevention
in Thailand through Global Fund supported projects to the Ministry of Health and Raks Thai Foundation.70
Interfaith Cooperation and Dialogue
A clause in the 2007 Constitution requires the government to “promote good understanding and harmony among followers of all religions.” The government has sponsored interfaith dialogue through regular meetings and public education programs. The Religious Affairs Department (RAD) has responsibility for carrying out and overseeing many of these efforts. On August 18, 2008, the RAD held its annual interfaith assembly with approximately 1,200 representatives and members of all registered religious groups participating. From May 12–14, 2009, the RAD sponsored a Youth Reconciliation Camp in Chonburi Province, just outside of Bangkok, that attracted 214 participants. Further, the Ministry of Public Health conducted a religious camp in Chiang Mai that brought together Buddhist, Muslim, and Christian youth to participate in activities that promoted religious reconciliation. Other events included the Religious Relations Caravan (a relief project for the poor in January 2009), the celebrations for World Visakha Bucha Day (held during May 2009 in Bangkok and Nakhon, and involving approximately 2,000 participants), and Mobile Religions, Arts, and Cultures Program to the Southern Border Provinces (a series of events featuring religious exhibitions and seminars—the first event in May 2008 in Natahiwat and the second in June 2009 in Pattani). In addition, the Police Crime Suppression Division in Bangkok conducted an interfaith seminar on crime prevention in January 2009. Members of the Buddhist, Muslim, and Christian religious communities in Bangkok participated. Lastly, a group of “peace ambassadors” comprised of representatives of the Buddhist, Muslim, and Christian communities met with the 4th Army Chief, Pichet Wisaijorn, at the Sufficiency Economy Learning Center in Pattani in May 2009 for a peace conference. The RAD has a religious interfaith subcommittee that is comprised of approximately 30 representatives from all religious groups in the country and RAD officials, and convenes at least every two months. The RAD also produces a weekly television program, Thailand: Land of Good People, as well as CDs/DVDs and the periodic newsletter, Religion Direct.71
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Numerous faith-inspired organizations from the three major regional faiths are active in Thailand, working on a host of issues: children and youth, human trafficking, education, HIV/AIDS, health, and gender issues. These organizations include a wide range of both national and international actors. Large international Christian organizations present on the ground include: Adventists Development and Relief Agency (ADRA), World Vision, Jesuit Refugee Service, and Caritas International. The Jesuit Refugee Service is active working with Burmese refugees at the Burma (Myanmar) border, as well as with labor migrants that work in Bangkok in often dangerous conditions. ADRA is working on a range of programming areas with current projects focusing on migrant worker rights, minority rights and development, HIV/ AIDS education, and a refugee vocational training program. One project focuses specifically on girls in Chiang Rai province, providing education, shelter for at-risk youth, and awareness campaigns on trafficking and sexual exploitation. Thai Christian organizations are active on a broad spectrum of activities with numerous organizations focusing on at-risk youth and operating orphanages. Huen Nam Jai Home of the Chang Kham Church in Bangkok, as an example, provides shelter and education to street children at risk of drug use, prostitution, and AIDS. The Im Jai House in Chaing Mai, an orphanage, provides education, food, shelter, and spiritual teaching to the children in the city. The Human Development Foundation—Mercy Centre in Bangkok is shelter for street kids, orphanage, kindergarten for 500 children, hospice, and home for mothers and children with HIV/ AIDS, originally built on a former Buddhist temple site, established over 30 years ago. The center’s director, Father Joseph Maier, has been working in the country for over 30 years and received the Most Noble Order of the Crown of Thailand for his service. Buddhist organizations are largely motivated by the teachings of socially engaged Buddhism and are active in the areas of environment, health, education, gender equality, and social justice, among others. There are numerous examples of faith-inspired organizations, movements, and individuals working for social justice
across the country, including the Sangha Metta Project (HIV/AIDS prevention and care—funded by UNICEF and UNAIDS), Thailand’s Health Promotion Temple Project (initiated by Public Health Ministry for Physical and Mental well-being), Thai Bhikkhunis (promotion of women in Buddhism and ordination), and the We Love Nan Province Foundation (founded by Phrakhru Pitak—an environmental conservation NGO). Several Muslim organizations work on development and peacebuilding related issues, particularly in the south. Notable examples include the Asian Muslim Action Network (Muslim and interfaith network at grassroots and policy level working on poverty reduction, environmental protection, human rights, social justice, interfaith and inter-cultural dialogue, and communal harmony and peace) and Kamphuan Women’s Group (Sustainable livelihoods for women). Development work by organizations linked to other faiths include Jewish organizations (American Jewish World Service Thailand, and Thai Jewish Community under the leadership of Rabbi Yosef C. Kantor), and the Baha’i (Baha’i Foundation of Thailand).
G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y
Vietnam is at a unique and critical juncture on development issues, a communist regime rapidly opening up to the global economy. Against a long history of confrontation with several foreign powers, today it actively courts international investment. Vietnam is one of the fastest growing economies in the world, with an average annual GDP growth of 7.2 percent prior to the recent worldwide economic recession, (the government expects growth to rebound to 6.5 percent in 2010). Through wide ranging development initiatives with a myriad partners, Vietnamese and international, Vietnam has lifted approximately 35 million above the poverty line. Vietnam’s poverty rate fell from 58 percent in 1993 to 14 percent in 2008. Vietnam aims to reach middle-income status (defined by the World Bank as countries with a per capita income above US$1,000) in the near future. Even so, Vietnam still has significant pockets of poverty, especially among its ethnic minorities, who live primarily in
mountain regions The next few years will be crucial in Vietnam’s development trajectory. Vietnam’s population is quite diverse. Approximately 86 percent of Vietnamese belong to the Kinh (Viet) majority ethnic group, and there are seven minority ethnic groups that constitute at least one percent of the population each, and four percent of the population belong to smaller ethnic groups. Official census figures indicate, in terms of religion, that approximately nine percent of Vietnamese identify as Buddhist, seven percent as Catholic, 1.5 percent as Hoa Hao, one percent as Cao Dai, 0.5 percent as Protestant, 0.1 percent as Muslim, and 81 percent claim no religious affiliation at all. A key unifying spiritual and cultural element for nearly all Vietnamese is ancestor veneration.
public), and the estimates of the number of Catholics in Vietnam range from 5 million to 8 million, giving it the second largest Catholic population in Southeast Asia after the Philippines. Hoa Hao and Cao Dai are nationalistic Buddhistderived religious sects and were among the first groups to instigate armed revolt against the French and then the Japanese colonial presence. The government officially recognizes them both, but many of their followers reject affiliation with government committees that oversee their respective religious affairs, causing some conflict with the government. Hoa Hao was founded in 1939 by Buddhist reformer Huynh Phu So, whom its adherents regard as a prophet. Cao Dai is more syncretic than Hoa Hao, with its collection of saints including Jesus Christ, Confucius, Muhammad, Julius Caesar, Joan of Arc, Pericles, Sun Yat-sen, and Victor Hugo. Protestantism represents only a small percentage of the population, but it is the fastest-growing religious denomination in Vietnam, having grown as much as 600 percent in the last decade. There are two main state-sanctioned Protestant bodies: the Evangelical Church of Vietnam North (ECVN) and the Southern Evangelical Church of Vietnam (SECV).72 Many small Christian groups are not registered with either. These include Christian members of ethnic minorities in the central highlands, known collectively as Montagnards, who meet in house churches. In 2007, Hanoi officially recognized Mennonite and Baptist denominations, and it recognized the Presbyterian Church in Vietnam (PCVN) in 2008. Islam in Vietnam is mostly associated with the Cham ethnic minority, although about a third of Muslims in the country are of other ethnicities, and 15–20 percent of Cham people are Hindu. Islam has become somewhat syncretic in nature with many Vietnamese Muslims practicing Bani Islam, which uses a 20-page version of the Qur’an.
Religion in Vietnam
Historically, Mahayana Buddhism is the largest religion of Vietnam since it arrived in Vietnam’s Red River Delta from China in the second century A.D. Theravada Buddhism from India also came to the southern Mekong Delta between the third and sixth centuries (and mostly remains in those regions). Over time, Mahayana Buddhist rituals have become, to varying degrees, intertwined with indigenous animism and Confucian and Taoist philosophies. The communist regime established in the North in the 1950s repressed Buddhist activity, while the clergy had a great deal of independence in the South, even though the Ngo Dinh Diem administration increasingly discriminated against Buddhism in favor of Catholicism. After Vietnam was consolidated in 1975, following the Vietnam War, the government attempted to co-opt and control the clergy in the South through the Patriotic Buddhist Liaison Committee. As a consequence of coercive government policies, Buddhist practice was substantially reduced. Today, the government still exerts significant influence though the state-sponsored Buddhist Church of Vietnam (BCV), the only officially recognized Buddhist entity in the country. French, Spanish and Portuguese missionaries brought Catholicism to Vietnam in the early 17th century, and the French colonial government promoted its spread to “balance” Buddhism. Today Catholics enjoy some specific freedoms (such as the ability to conduct mass in
Development Work in Vietnam
Registered faith-inspired humanitarian NGOs are governed by the same guidelines as secular organizations doing such work, and there are few legal obstacles in conducting development work in the country. NonVietnamese faith-inspired organizations registered with
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the government see good progress, reporting a trend towards liberalization as development and international engagement increases.73 International Organizations In Vietnam, international NGOs tend to occupy the roles and fulfill the functions of development and poverty reduction that domestic NGOs do in other countries in Southeast Asia, sometimes operating through local NGOs. International NGOs are particularly active at the commune level (the administrative level below that of “district”), often working with mass organizations (which are mainly funded by the Communist Party). As of 2004, at least 50 of the 450 international NGOs registered with the Vietnamese Government’s People’s Aid Coordinating Committee (PACCOM) were faith-inspired organizations, although organizational affiliation or lack thereof is often ambiguous. In general, larger faith-inspired organizations are more likely to register with PACCOM than smaller entities. Among these larger organizations, World Vision is very active in Vietnam. It introduced Area Development Programs (ADPs) in 1997 as one of their principal foci of work in the country. ADPs involve a participatory and long-term view toward community development and integrate into their operations poverty reduction, attention to administrative structures, gender issues, and environmental considerations, among other elements. In 2008, Caritas, seizing upon recent changes in government disposition toward faith-inspired NGOs, resumed working in Vietnam after a 32-year hiatus with development programs focused on the most marginalized segments of Vietnamese society. Oxfam Hong Kong has worked at the commune level (but also with other levels of government) on issues related to landmines, as well as construction of a water supply system as part of a “Peace Village Project.” The Peace Village is a de-mined area that provides housing and other infrastructure for 100 families that have a member affected by “left-over” landmines. Japan International Volunteer Center has created “Community Development Committees” in rural areas of Vietnam to, among other activities, promote agriculture and forest conservation that supports the livelihood of community members, is environmentally sustainable, and is oriented toward promoting local owner48
ship. Islamic Relief, through the Disasters Emergency Committee (United Kingdom), was involved in emergency relief for Vietnam following the devastation of Typhoon Ketsana in September 2009. Smaller international Buddhist and Christian groups (sometimes including overseas Vietnamese) that work informally with Vietnamese nationals often arouse less government suspicion and scrutiny than larger Western NGOS and are thus able to operate relatively easily. One such organization is the Committee for the Relief of Poor Children in Vietnam (CRPCV), a U.S.-based Buddhist NGO founded by a Vietnamese expatriate, working on issues of food, shelter, education, and the effects of natural disasters as they pertain to disadvantaged and orphaned Vietnamese children. Vietnamese Organizations Since the mid-1990s, there has been a substantial increase in Vietnamese NGOs that are relatively independent from the state compared to those that came about because of the Doi Moi reforms of the late 1980s. There has been a recent surge of growth among all types of civil society organizations (including CBOs and cooperatives), so that by 2005 there were approximately 140,000 CBOs, 3,000 cooperatives, 1,000 local NGOs, and 200 charities recognized by the Vietnamese government. At the grassroots level, the profusion of community-based organizations (CBOs), mostly consisting of issue-specific groups not sponsored by the government (such as water-user organizations, farmers’ collectives, and credit groups), has been spurred by involvement of international NGOs and foreign donors. Faith-inspired organizations in Vietnam are active among these organizations on a wide range of development work. Among the officially sanctioned organizations, the Buddhist Church of Vietnam is engaged in anti-drug and child welfare programs, and the Hoa Hao organization asserts that it is involved in various charitable activities and local development projects. Cardinal Jean-Baptiste Pham Minh Man, the Archbishop of Ho Chi Minh City, has proposed that the Catholic Church in Vietnam provide “educational training” to help the Vietnamese people (particularly those in large cities) to address social issues of concern to the Church, including unrestrained consumerism, prostitution, drug addiction, HIV/AIDS, among others. Vietnamese
G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y
and location for village meetings. It has the highest infant mortality rate in Asia apart from Afghanistan. Buddhist nuns were recently invited by the Catholic Church to learn about the Church’s social programs. The Lao majority comprises 55 percent of the population. the PDR government attempted both to influence and capitalize on Buddhism for specific political goals: highlighting the stated compatibility between Marxism and Buddhism at conferences.Catholics and Buddhists have participated in interfaith dialogues. This is partly because of a shift in law and policy-making away from a solely topdown process. Today. Hue Tri. the practice of Buddhism waned. and educational exchanges in recent years to increase mutual understanding. which resulted in an average of 6 percent annual growth from 1988 to 2008. a technical school. and at least one nun is pursuing the experience with related studies at Ho Chi Minh City Open University. two farms. there was a marked resurgence of Buddhist religious activity. place for prayer sessions. There have also | . for example. and the 23rd highest worldwide. education. and Buddhism was the state religion of the Kingdom of Laos. in Mongolia the Vietnamese Salesian mission runs a kindergarten. Laos is a very diverse country. Vietnamese Salesians (members of an international Roman Catholic charitable religious order) are engaged in social development work in other Asian countries. been increased government overtures at foreign investment. Religion in Laos 67 percent of Laotians identify as Buddhist. the government in place prior to the communist revolution in 1975. As an example. For instance. The minority ethnic groups lag behind the national average for many development indicators covering health. and economic status. and also work together on social development issues. to one that mandates impact assessments of new laws and the consultation of public opinion regarding the laws. Though literacy rates for the country as a whole increased from 48 percent to 79 percent during the years 1980–2001. the literacy rate for the Mon—Khmer ethnic group. In the years immediately following the revolution. while other organizations have made some advancements with issue-based advocacy. as a residence for monks. The government began decentralizing control over the economy and encouraging private enterprise in 1986. and a shelter for 120 disabled children. Theravada Buddhism was brought to Laos in the eighth century by Mon Buddhist monks. The wat (Buddhist temple) is an important center of village life. About 31 percent of its population lives below the poverty line. Some local Vietnamese NGOs have been able to contribute to government policy-making processes. soup kitchens. but in the late 1980s. only reached 55 percent for males and 20 percent for females. Buddhism continues to be important in Laos. a Buddhist nun. works with a Catholic social worker operating a “compassion house” that addresses the needs and problems of street children. encounters. and allowing party members to participate in Buddhist ceremonies and be ordained as monks. the World Bank argues that it is feasible that Laos could graduate from the UN Development Program’s list of least-developed countries by the target year 2020. especially at the village level in the lowlands. Nearly 80 percent of the labor force works in subsistence agriculture. and many Laotian kings were patrons of Buddhism. excluding the Asian financial crisis years in the late 1990s. mandating a prominent political component to the curriculum at Buddhist schools. the remaining quarter of the population consists of over 100 minority ethnic groups. Villages celebrate several major religious festivals throughout the year. with economic reform and political liberalization. The reforms have allowed NGOs greater access to lobby the government regarding development issues including HIV/AIDS. while the Khmou and Hmong make up 11 percent and 8 percent respectively. Even earlier. It is also one of the least developed countries in East Asia. In terms of ethnicity. Elsewhere in Ho Chi Minh City. There are some signs of economic development hope in the country. The Pathet Lao communist movement that overthrew the Kingdom of Laos gained the support of some of the sangha (Buddhist clergy). which was important to their mobilization of popular support at the village level. including 49 2010 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS Laos Socio-Economic Background The Lao People’s Democratic Republic is one of the few remaining one-party Communist states in the world.
The small Christian minority in Laos. there is an active international presence with organizations doing a wide range of work. governance. did not become widespread until the late 13th or early 14th century. transportation. as well as regional Asian government and civil society representatives. agricultural and rural development. because of the fusion between animism and Buddhism. From these examples.5 percent of the population. G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y NGOs. Although the syncretism between animism and Buddhism is deep and pervasive throughout much of Laos. Government repression continues to fall disproportionately on ethnic minority groups striving for greater autonomy. the highland ethnic minority groups) and Lao Theung (the mid-slope minorities) are animists. and Aide Odontologique Internationale (International Dental Aid). ostensibly because animism is not “compatible” with the communist party ideology. enlightenment. the second oldest. It is often difficult to disentangle political dissent from religious persecution and government antagonism. At Wat Aham in the city of Luang Prabang. the country’s ethnic minorities largely do not display this integration of belief. Politics. the UNDP and Lao PDR sponsored the “Government-Civil Society Organisations Partnership for Poverty Reduction. Many foreign. the celebration of the birth. to discuss requisites for and obstacles to effective collaboration. In 2008. among others. which seeks to bestow good luck upon an individual as they take a significant step in their life. the Lao PDR government has taken up a purge of animism. social security. this ability is evidenced by one surviving a 50 grave or protracted illness. about 1. has faced persecution by the government (although evidently less in recent years than immediately following the 1975 revolution). the mythical founder of the Lao race. there is clearly a great deal of diversity within animist belief and practice among Laotian ethnic minority groups. phi are omnipresent within living and non-living entities. persecution of animist practices has increased tensions between the government and the Lao Buddhist sangha. is the oldest religious practice in Laos. and animist traditions are explicitly observed at most Buddhist wats in combination with Buddhist practices. BERKLEY CENTER | . and death of the Buddha. the Vietnam Union of Science and Technology Organizations and Voluntary Action Network India hosted a capacity-building conference for civil society organizations in Vietnam. the servants of Khun Borom. and actively engage faith-inspired organizations. The Lao Buddhist baci ceremony. In 2007. According to the animist beliefs of the Hmong. However. are venerated as the guardian spirits (devata luang) of the city. The Lamet minority’s animist beliefs involve every village having a spirit practitioner (called a xemia) who is responsible for making sacrifices to village spirits. health. taking various forms throughout the country. alleging that government forces have used violence to compel Christians to “prove” that they have given up their beliefs. Agir pour les Femmes en Situation Précaire (Action for Women in Precarious Situations). secular NGOs in Laos work specifically on issues affecting women and children in poverty. according to reports received by the UN and Western media. Traditionally in Laos. exhibiting various religious practices that have in common a cult of ancestors. and Cambodia. Most of the Lao Soung (collectively.the beginning and end of Buddhist lent and Vixakha Bouxa. Aide et Action. derives from the worship of animist guardian spirits called khuan. Animist shrines can be found throughout the country. Examples of active American and European organizations include Action with Lao Children. In recent years. and Development Though there are many challenges associated with development work in Laos. which brings distinction to these individuals’ parents. In Laotian animism. Japan International Cooperation Agency supports projects related to education. known as phi. but who also largely belong to animist and Christian sects. water resources. The worship of animist spirits. Theravada Buddhism. there is a class of shamans above that of “ordinary” spirit practitioners that is able to directly contact spirits (neeb). private sector development. and urban/ regional development. and gives them an important standing in the village.” which included a conference for government officials to meet with leaders from Lao civil society. all men are expected to spend time as monks or novices before marriage (and possibly in their later years). Laos. natural resources and energy.
Recent events have focused international attention on Burma (Myanmar) and the repressive policies of the mili- 51 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 . Also from Japan. The Sangha Metta Project. a Japanese Buddhist NGO. The latter sponsors initiatives such as the CWS Village Clean Water Program. Laos still faces many obstacles to sustainable peace and development. and because the decree only became operational in November 2009. with organization president Mr. emphasizing abstinence and safe sex. nuns. the government has recognized few organizations under this decree. and advocating for a tobacco control law) and supports the Community Initiative for Primary Education Development (CIED). and novices to work with communities to prevent AIDS and assist those living with the illness. there has been close collaboration between Buddhist organizations and other entities working on HIV/AIDS issues. The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) aims to help Laos meet the UN Millennium Development Goals and increase food security by working with communities in the model of sustainable development. education. At the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) People’s Forum/ASEAN Civil Society Conference. While religion is clearly a major part of Burmese identity and society. an ethnic minority health project. and cultural activities in Laos and other countries in Southeast Asia. Burmese culture reflects diversity of both people and geography with an estimated 135 different ethnic groups officially recognized by the government and many others unrecognized. Laos was one of five countries to reject its democratically selected civil society representative who was to participate in the conference. rounding the groundbreaking ceremony of a nursing school and the Mother and Child Hospital.Despite the significant amount of work being done. The Buddhist Aid Center (BAC). has made building schools in Laos its main activity since 1993. providing systems for clean water and sanitation. Laos’ foray into the area of civil society development is quite recent. founded in 1980 by the Soto Zen sect of Japanese Buddhism. Future development will likely depend on the degree to which Laos’ one-party system chooses to afford civil society a voice on governance and development issues. ADRA also operates health programs (including a youth HIV/ AIDS education project. where monks provide a venue (the village wat) and promotion for PSI’s video presentation on HIV/AIDS prevention. with the government having only approved in April 2009 a decree to allow non-profit organizations to form and operate. The nation has a rich Buddhist history. a Thai Buddhist organization. it remains to be seen how easy or difficult it will be for organizations to register. which operates in rural areas. The Shanti Volunteer Association (SVA). So far. has worked in Laos to train and equip monks. engages in development. It has also launched “Metta Tham. PSI works with the Lao Buddhist Organization at traditional festivals and concerts to promote the Buddhist message of virtue. In recent years. Faith-Inspired Development Work Catholic Relief Services (CRS) and Church World Service (CWS) are both active in Laos. contemporary Burmese Buddhism shows influences both of international Buddhism and Burmese indigenous beliefs. Handa Haruhisa. World Wide Support for Development. the role that religion plays in development is severely cramped by the nation’s authoritarian regime. and by 2004 it had constructed 102 buildings (Mukhopadyaya). Organizations linked to engaged Buddhism have implemented social and aid projects in Laos. met directly with Laotian Prime Minister Bouasone Bouphavanh in January 2010 sur- Burma (Myanmar) The Country in Context Burma. and Burma (Myanmar’s) international links are constrained. is geographically the largest country in Southeast Asia. Several organizations have worked in partnership with Population Services International (PSI) to promote HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention throughout the country. officially known as the Union of Myanmar since the military government changed its name in 1989.” a collaborative project between the Lao Sangha and the Department of Religion of the government’s Lao Front for National Construction. Champassak Province Buddhist Association worked with PSI in 2001 to develop a documentary on HIV/AIDS prevention from a Buddhist perspective. PSI works with monks at the village level.
and remains so despite increasing international pressure to allow her party to participate in the elections scheduled for 2010 (she is. estimated to be at least as large as the formal economy. only behind Saudi Arabia and the Maldives (see Figure 2). The military government oppresses certain groups. and lack of social opportunity. however. life expectancy 61. and displaced hundreds of thousands more. The hierarchy of the Buddhist .tary junta that has ruled the country since 1962. highlighted tensions and frustration with the ruling junta. Almost 33 percent of the population falls below the poverty line.74 The Saffron Revolution of 2007. Non-state actors involved in social development in Burma (Myanmar) face a wide array of challenges. Many deaths could have been prevented if the government had responded immediately to offers of international help. Buddhist monks. when tens of thousands of monks took to the street in non-violent protest against government oppression.76 The military government largely controls social and economic opportunity. government restrictions make international assistance extraordinarily challenging and thus limited. filling the gap left by the absence of the government and international community. The government responded violently. including novices. poverty is a central fact of Burmese life today. Burma was also shaken by the catastrophic 2008 Cyclone Nargis that destroyed countless towns and villages. officially excluded from holding public office in Burma’s [Myanmar’s] Constitution). BERKLEY CENTER | G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y Socio-Economic Background Burma’s (Myanmar’s) population of approximately 42 million is about 28 percent urban.000. offering few alternatives. falling from 3. Lack of opportunity (especially for young people) in a country where the military controls even social mobility was a significant impetus for the protests. persecution. including severe government restrictions. killing protestors and civilians as it feared losing its grip on power. the country is diverse.79 74 percent of the population is Therevada Buddhist. Economic mismanagement and corruption have prevented the majority of Burma’s population from benefiting from the country’s vast oil and gas deposits. and favoritism ranks Burma (Myanmar) as the third most restrictive country in the world.4 percent and to 1. along with a poor investment climate and the global economic crisis. Chinese (3 percent). Despite substantial natural resources. 68 percent Burmans with other significant ethnic minorities being the Karen (7 percent). number more than 400. and the private sector is very small. especially in rural areas. Teacher pay is very poor and investment insufficient. Economic growth has decreased significantly since 2006. As the debacle surrounding Cyclone Nargis showed. Aung San Suu Kyi. scorchedearth policies that destroy farmland. Indian (2 percent).75 Years of oppression have given rise to insurgencies which cause even greater human suffering and loss of life. it is actively supported by the government. religious persecution. The United States has maintained economic sanctions against Burma since 2003 that. and forced reloca52 Religion in Burma (Myanmar) A multi-country analysis that gauges governments’ religious regulation. aggravate economic hardship. tion programs. most recently manifesting itself in the nationwide anti-government protests of September 2007.77 The black market is a large source of economic activity. Government controls and economic policies perpetuate poverty. killed tens of thousands. resulting in unpaid forced labor campaigns. Though there is officially 90 percent enrollment in primary school. Ethnically. During the disaster. and though Buddhism is not an official national religion. Rakhine (4 percent). There was widespread international criticism of the brutality.78 Burma’s (Myanmar’s) low rank on the global Human Development Index (138 in 2009. national faith-inspired organizations played a critical role in providing assistance. recipient of the 1991 Nobel Peace Prize and elected Prime Minister in 1990 elections. UNICEF reports a 50 percent dropout rate before completion.2 years and PPP GDP per capita US$904) sums up the tragedy of its poverty and missed opportunities. The poor education system perpetuates poverty. igniting a tradition of political protest that stretches back to the time of British colonial rule. Mon (2 percent). has been under house arrest for 14 of the past 20 years.1 percent in 2008. and other (5 percent). These conditions have contributed to social unrest. The ethnic diversity has posed challenges to national integration.
Religious organizations are tightly monitored and their activities restricted. including Christian (seven percent). and a modern zoo. churches.000 have fled to Bangladesh. including faith-based structures (Buddhist. The majority of Muslims identify themselves as members of the Rohingya ethnic group.3 7. Muslim (four percent). The Muslim population. including animism. Faith-inspired organizations were involved in all stages of response. and limited social freedoms. Government crackdowns are common. The Christian population has members from all ethnic groups. specifically points to the importance of community-driven recovery.000 Rohingya refugees in the country. while the rest of the country lives with intermittent electricity. The religious diversity is closely linked to Burma’s ethnic diversity. The new capital of Naypyidaw has consistent electricity.80 There are significant religious minorities. 0–10. and over 250. well manicured gardens. 0–10.6 9. which astrologists believed was an auspicious time. 0–10. Non-governmental organizations work to compensate for the many gaps and public sector failings.81 Role of Faith-Inspired Actors Burmese social services and infrastructure are poorly developed. There are over 300. astrology.Figure 2 Religious Freedom Indicators 8. 0–10. and consequently do not have citizenship per se and do not receive state services. and mosques work both independently and in collaboration with international organizations. poor education. and the United Nations. low is less regulation Religious Persecution. as was the case with relocation of the capital from Yangoon to Naypyidaw. with most minority religions concentrated within minority ethnic groups. have been crucial in filling the gap. Burma became independent in 1948. persecution of minority ethnic groups by the military government has often coincided with religious persecution. low is less regulation GFI: Government Favoritism of religion Index. noting that at the village level the traditional social welfare support systems. to program implementation. ASEAN. Faith in Burma (Myanmar) cannot be fully understood without taking into account indigenous beliefs. faces particular hardship and discrimination against Muslims is widespread. and Hindu (two percent). and engage in all aspect of social development and humanitarian relief. many with local roots. to coordination and planning. from initial humanitarian relief. and Hindu) all played a role. and spirits that are intertwined with Burmese culture and faith. especially visible after the pro-democracy monk protests of 2008. The Rohingya are not officially recognized by the military junta.9 10 GRI: Government Regulation of religion Index.82 The government operates a failed educational system. Muslim. Community based monks. The Post-Nargis Recovery and Preparation Plan prepared by the government.83 53 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 . their extensive network and presence helped many who were most in need. where teachers are poorly paid. lack of opportunity. Cyclone Nargis highlighted the effectiveness of many faith-inspired actors as first-responders to a humanitarian emergency. Given the obstacles that international organizations face to work in Burma (Myanmar). high is more persecution Source: The Association of Religion Data Archives sangha is quite tightly controlled by the government. which comprises four percent of Burma’s (Myanmar’s) population. Christian. low is less favoritism SRI: Social Regulation of religion Index. As a result. but the Karen are the largest group. faith-inspired organizations.
as do many socially engaged Buddhist temples and monks. and World Vision. especially in rural areas. are the center of religious and social life and in practice often act relatively independently despite the many restrictions imposed on the city based Buddhist sangha. however. Temples. 54 . PEPFAR (U. Save the Children. including one project where the monastery produced a soap opera that was viewed by over a thousand people at an important Buddhist festival. International faithinspired organizations include: the Christian Reformed World Relief Committee (CRWRC). do operate.S.BERKLEY CENTER | G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y The government does not allow missionaries to operate. Kids Alive International. Christian aid organizations. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief ) works with Buddhist monasteries. both international and national.
55 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 .
and the countries and sectors in which organizations work. is one of the most active and largest government development agencies in the world. but also from the United States and Europe. with emphasis on country-focused and regional programs. economic and political interests. From 2002 to 2006 Japan led the region in both Official Development Assistance (ODA) and Foreign Direct Investment (FDI). providing assistance to over 100 countries. and historical circumstances all influence present day relationships. Japan is also one of the world’s largest donors to international multilateral organizations. particularly those from the wealthier countries in Asia. JICA is especially active in Southeast Asia and engages with faith-inspired organizations throughout the region. Japan is the largest trading partner for ASEAN countries. economically and politically. Religious and cultural ties. Japan has involved a broad spectrum of organizations and institutions. drawing faith-inspired organizations to contribute to a range of work throughout the region. Japan is actively engaged in regional programs for the development of the Mekong river basin. the number of organizations working in the region is vast. including infrastructure development.4 billion. Laos. and human development. representing an increase of over 8 percent from 2007. and common faith beliefs transcend national boundaries. established in 1974. To that end. Japan initiated the US$360 million Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction at the Asian Development Bank and the Japan Social Development 57 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS he following sections examine the role of transnational faith-inspired organizations in Southeast Asia. World Bank and the United Nations. including government and international organizations. The government utilizes various mechanisms to distribute foreign aid.84 Japan and Southeast Asia have especially strong interdependent ties. Japan has emphasized Asia as a pillar of its diplomatic policy.87 Overall. during the Cambodian refugee crisis of the 1970s and 1980s. lesser known organizations that have made particular contributions at the regional level. Vietnam. approximately 60 percent of Japanese foreign aid goes to Asia. the factors that facilitate regional roles. including the Asian Development Bank. NGOs.Part 4 Transnational Dimensions T Japan Japanese Foreign Assistance Since the end of World War II. and views its relationship with the region as an important strategic partnership. restoration and preservation of historical and cultural sites. and faith-inspired organizations.85 Economically.88 | 2010 .5 billion in aid over the next three years. making it one of the largest donors globally. Japan allocates significant resources to development. Aid is given in a wide variety of sectors. The Overseas Economic Cooperation Fund (OECF) was created in 1961 to extend low-interest long-term funds to developing countries. In 2000. As in the country case studies in section 3. 86 In Cambodia. and Burma (Myanmar). Japan’s net ODA in FY2008 was US$9. as well as smaller. The Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA). Shanti Volunteer Association. 2009 pledging US$5. with Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama on November 6. an early example being collaboration with a Buddhist organization. followed by the United States and the European Union. The country sections summarize information on the country context where faith-inspired organizations are based. The organizations listed are the most active and well-known. construction of schools and hospitals. Japan began direct dialogue with ASEAN countries in 1978.
but she began out of a personal drive to contribute to her community. Religion Religion in Japan historically has been influenced by the major religions of Asia. I went to villages and offered assistance and undertook various volunteer activities. International Planned Parenthood Federation. You can’t foster genuine independence in people merely through charitable deeds or donations of money. There are now over 12 million members worldwide in 192 countries following the Nichiren Buddhist teachings for “empowerment and inner transformation or ‘human revolution’ which enables individuals to take responsibility for their lives and contribute to building a world where people of diverse cultures and faiths can live in peace. But helping people become self-reliant is precisely what the Soka Gakkai has done. Soka Gakkai’s programs are unique in that as a general rule. without anyone paying her. Japan saw an increase in overall ODA. 1981. . the Japan Trust Fund for HIV/AIDS. illness. actually. [After the Second World War. Three of the most active and organized offices are located in Singapore.” Though Soka Gakkai began in Japan. but an individual taking it upon herself to make her community a better place.Fund at the World Bank. Additional prominent international Japanese development initiatives include the United Nations Human Security Fund (UNTFHS) (directed towards key thematic areas including health. Determined to help them in any way I could. notably Buddhism. In 2008. I made the Eighth Route Army of China [renowned for its selfless service to the people] one of my models. and the Global Fund to Fight AIDS. A woman called Samith decided that the wells in her community needed to be cleaned. agriculture and G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y small scale infrastructure development). and Taoism. Confucianism. education. One story from Soka Gakkai in Cambodia illustrates how one individual worked to improve her community. Seikyo Shimbun. including a contribution of US$1. of those at the very lowest strata of society. both created with the mission to provide direct assistance to the world’s poorest and most vulnerable.] there were so many people suffering emotional or economic distress as a result of physical disabilities. Tuberculosis. Social development programming is for the most part independently organized. Eventually others joined in. its worldwide offices are independently operated and funded. —Anecdote from interview with Joan Anderson.06 billion to the United Nations. Office of Public Information—Tokyo Office The quotation by Japanese author and critic Mimpei Sugiura. and in revitalizing their lives. largely due to a rise in contributions to international financial institutions. they do not provide material support. and without anyone asking or expecting any praise. But it was no good. and Malaria. Box 10 Soka Gakkai Soka Gakkai has its roots in Nichiren Buddhism and is a lay organization founded in the 1930s by teachers wanting to reform the Japanese education system. . This.” In addition to social development activities. yet religion in the country has developed a character that is uniquely Japanese. and so on. Every week from then on Samith took it upon herself to clean the wells. is something that I have also devoted great energy to. . the loss of a spouse. BERKLEY CENTER | 58 . Soka Gakkai is an active advocate internationally in the campaign to eliminate nuclear weapons. in the May 3. ensuring a country specific focus. issue summarizes well the work and approach of the organization: The Gakkai’s greatest achievement lies in unleashing the power of the people. in Soka Gakkai’s daily newspaper. Malaysia. It was not part of any formal program. and Hong Kong.
Korea relies heavily on Personal Voluntary Organizations and NGOs as a component of its aid strategy. Japan has a specific law dealing with Religious Corporations. welfare. community development. Korea South Korea launched its official development assistance (KOICA) program in 1991. Shanti Volunteer Association (SVA). Relief Assist Comfort Kindness (RACK). The foreign aid program also has a substantial training component. Buddhism has coexisted for centuries with Shinto. if treated properly. were religious or faith-based entities. disaster relief. Buddhist Aid Center (BAC). (the Religious Corporation Law. The Buddhist NGO Network of Japan. and today Japanese Buddhism is quite varied. after one of the most rapid post-war industrialization and development periods Asia has seen. In 2006. The Arigatou Foundation. with both religions influencing each other to a degree.90 Virtually every Japanese Buddhist organization engages in some sort of international relief or social development activity. it is an influential actor in Southeast Asia. Buddhism is seen to serve as a moral compass for social development work.167 registered non-profit person entities in Japan. Soka Gakkai reports a presence in 190 countries and is also highly involved in social development work throughout Asia (see Box 10) Japanese religion and beliefs have influenced attitudes towards charity and social development.Buddhism and Shinto are Japan’s two major religions. both throughout Asia and around the world. education. Ayus Buddhist International Cooperation Network.92 Some of the largest and most active faith-inspired organizations include Soka Gakkai International. has inspired social and development work both in Japan and abroad. or 77. Article 4 (1951) for entities whose purpose is evangelizing. all have been very successful in exporting their beliefs and practices around the world. which lends special difficulty to quantitative efforts to estimate Japan’s religious adherents. Korea modeled its foreign aid program after Japan. with a large component devised to develop Korean industry. but a smaller number of Christian and Shinto inspired organizations are involved in development work abroad. or the administration of organizations engaging in these activities can be established without approval by the government. in particular.894. The Christian community in Faith-Inspired Organizations and Development in Japan and Abroad Many faith-inspired organizations in Japan are engaged in social development work. International Shinto Foundation. Buddhism was first introduced to Japan in the 6th century. Nichiren Buddhism is one strand that. Activities Legal Persons Law” state that nonprofit entities whose activities include promotion of health. Shinto was the state religion of Japan from 1871 to 1947. as well as the most comprehensive body of NGO classification. and World Vision Japan . Though comparatively Korea does not have a large presence on the international scene in terms of monetary amount. Tendai Shu’s Light Up Your Corner Movement. The large majority of the organizations stem from Japan’s numerous Buddhist sects. The 1991 “Approved Community-Based Organization Law” and the 1998 “Special Nonprofit 59 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 . which is indigenous to Japan. Japan has the most complex NGO framework in Asia. Association for Renge-in Tanjoji International Cooperation (ARTIC). conducting religious rites. Terra Net. Rissho Kosei-kai. Japan has witnessed the birth of a variety of “new religions” (shinshukyo) stemming from both Buddhist and Shinto beliefs. Rissho Kose-kai. will positively intervene in one’s life. sports. shyuukyou houjin. but the constitution mandated separation of church and state after World War II. Shingon Risshu Volunteer Association. arts. NGO refers specifically to groups engaged in international cooperation activities. Many consider Shinto more about ritual than a religion. or kami. and Tenrikyo. Shinto is a belief system in which spirits. wherein societal harmony is held as the highest value. of which 183. World Mate.5 percent.93 Korea is the most rapidly Christianizing (Protestant) country in the world.91 In the Japanese context. The largest three new religions are Soka Gakkai. and this has allowed it to exist peacefully with Buddhism for centuries. international cooperation. and educating and nurturing believers. using both Korean supplies and technical materials. culture.89 Many Japanese consider themselves both Shinto and Buddhist. there were 237.
especially when a missionary group links their charity to their belief in Jesus Christ. the number had grown to nearly nine million Protestants and five and a half million Catholics as of 2007. given a reluctance to engage in networking and coordination work. influential. Also in 2007. The 1960 government census recorded 600. Other faith-inspired organizations include Compassion South Korea. Soka Gakkai International has an active Korea branch. both Christian and non-Christian. Cambodia. established in 1950. as well as abroad. and the Philippines. Indonesia. Efforts for engagement and interfaith dialogue with Korean missionaries have proved difficult. one Catholic leader suggested that Korean Christian missionaries sometimes lack sensitivity to the local context. Habitat for Humanity Korea.000 to Asia. including the indigenous Buddhist beliefs and the government’s sensitivities to proselytization. Good People World Family. from 8. After the United States. The general coordination challenges that characterize much faith-inspired work seem to apply particularly to Korean groups. In Cambodia.000. and it was reported that the church had 634 missionaries worldwide in 2007. directly affecting government policy on child protection. World Vision Korea G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y is particularly active on government advocacy towards child rights. BERKLEY CENTER | 60 . after the United States (see Box 11). Included in these numbers is the Yoido Full Gospel Church (Assemblies of God).94 The recent kidnapping of 23 missionaries in Afghanistan has elicited some discussion in Korea about the sensitivities of sending missionaries abroad. nearly 12. works in South Korea reaching out to low-income families in urban areas. including Japanese-Korean relations. and youth development. A range of faith-inspired development organizations are active working both in Korea and abroad. education. representing various faiths. economic development. Between 2000 and 2006. including Laos. As of 2008. Many missionaries travel abroad under the guise of development workers. primary health care. Another leader reported that negative perceptions of insensitive missionary work have spillover effects for all Christian organizations doing aid work. intercultural relations. Korean missionaries gained international attention when 23 missionaries from the Saemmul Church were abducted in Afghanistan while proselytizing. and HIV/AIDS. Won Buddhist Youth Association.95 The Adventist Development and Relief Agency (ADRA) works both in Korea and in Southeast Asia on food security. Korea sends the largest amount of Christian missionaries abroad. Despite the tensions. the largest Christian church in Korea. Korean missionary groups are a significant presence across the Southeast Asian faith and development landscape. Korea has experienced one of the world’s largest growth rates of the Christian Church. Faith-inspired organizations in Southeast Asia have voiced some concerns about the ramifications Korean missionaries can have for faith-inspired development work. focusing on a range of issues both in Korea and in cooperation with other faithinspired organizations. the number was still increasing.000 Protestant Christians. and at times controversial faces of Korea in Southeast Asia is the explosion of Christian missionaries throughout the region. Thailand. The Korean World Mission Association reports 58 denominations and 217 mission organizations sending 19. though all agreed that they are an important voice to call to the table. poverty. regardless of their denomination or practice.000 to over 16. under the leadership of David Yonggi Cho. Vietnam.96 Box 11 Korean Missionaries One of the most prolific. Yoido Full Gospel Church sends missionaries throughout the world. as well as the world’s largest congregation. Over the past half decade. The event highlighted concerns about missionaries and the impact they have abroad. supporting 155 development and relief projects in 43 developing countries.413 missionaries to 168 countries. Caritas. The World Fellowship of Buddhist Youth.337 are in Southeast Asia. and emergency management. of which 5. and Loving Concern International.Korea sends more missionaries abroad than any other country in the world. World Vision Korea. particularly to conflict zones. the number of missionaries abroad doubled.
and clinics around the country. and agriculture.”97 There is officially a separation of Church and State. 43 clinics. Given the challenges. Among these institutions. In 2009. Tzu Chi operates a medical university. 12 elementary schools. . 3 rehabilitation centers. In 1995. social welfare. WFP. About 35 percent of the population is Buddhist and 33 percent Taoist. it is one of East Asia’s “Economic Tigers. 25 retirement homes. 14 universities. the state-financed medical institutions cannot always reach the most destitute citizens who live in remote regions. addressing both the humanitarian needs of the North Korean people and refugees. including WHO. though their roles are in some places circumscribed by political factors. 41 high schools. in addition to Southeast Asia. and the organization has been in the country since 1999 working in five provinces.Taiwan Taiwan holds a unique position in Asia. health. as well as 147 libraries and 59 publishing houses issuing 774 publications. religious groups were operating 32 hospitals. as an example. 12 orphanages. and 107 monasteries and seminaries.98 Some argue that political cooperation with the government is an important value for the Confucian social ethic. but despite its political predicament. civil society organizations and religious organizations flourished. Korean faith inspired actors are present in almost all countries in Southeast Asia. seen as important to create a harmonious society.102 Recognizing the close relationship between faith-inspired organizations and the Taiwanese government. 14 handicapped institutions. In 2005. many faith-inspired organizations work through government partners and a range of United Nations organizations. as well as responding to natural disasters. religious organizations expanded their religious mandates to include provision of social services.99 As martial law of the 1940s to the early 1980s slowly transitioned into a more liberal system of governance. in October 2008. 33 centers for the mentally handicapped. the Taiwanese government held a ceremony honoring more than 200 religious groups from all major religions represented in Taiwan. The DPRK government maintains strict control over NGO activities in the country. Caritas works on advocacy for poverty reduction as a key component of political and diplomatic efforts. but with some degree of government cooperation that allowed them to grow and flourish over the decades.” and an economic powerhouse. 6 colleges. Much of the population also follows 61 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS The Korean government is giving increasing priority to its role in Southeast Asia with larger investment in the region. Religious organizations play a particularly important role in delivering healthcare where the state cannot. Faith-inspired groups are also active in education. including strong commitment to religious freedom. Faith-inspired organizations have played critical roles in supporting the government’s democratization. and social harmony. for contributions to public service. although the government instituted a National Health Insurance system providing basic services to 95 percent of the population. with many people considering themselves adherents in some degree to both (2006 government statistics). and laying a foundation of trust and understanding for the future opening of the country. beliefs and rituals considered “traditional Chinese folk religions. ADRA opened a western style café in Pyongyang. Some Taiwanese organizations play important roles in development in other Southeast Asian countries. An industrialized and developed nation.103 | 2010 A number of organizations. among others. having established 352 kindergartens. Taiwan has maintained high development indicators. Many organizations. hospitals. the Korean government established an ASEAN center in Seoul to increase engagement with regional leaders. Both World Vision (through local partner Korea National Economic Cooperation Agency and its South Korea office) and ADRA (with an office in North Korea) have active relief and development programs. but Taiwanese culture is deeply influenced by Buddhist and Confucian values.100 As Taiwan’s economy began to grow in the 1960s. Its tenuous relationship with China presents particular difficulties. and UNICEF. as well as implementing programs focusing on food aid. encourage their adherents to engage in social services. and 39 nurseries in the country. have a particular focus on North Korea. the largest with memberships in the millions. The largest religious organizations emerged during this time not in opposition to the government. and education endeavors. health. A large number of faith-inspired organizations work both in Taiwan and overseas.101 As of March 2005.
environmental protection. drought. aiding typhoon victims in Bangladesh. among which World Vision has been in the country since 1950. raising the majority of its funds through small personal donations. As a central tenet of its work. Awarded the 2008 Niwano Peace Prize for its peace and relief work around the world. They provided goods and services including hot meals.” exemplifying the philosophy behind the Buddhist organization’s work. In commenting on the work of her organization. earthquakes. BERKLEY CENTER | 62 . temporary jobs for victims. including many countries in Southeast Asia. focusing on the virtue of compassion. The organization has since expanded to over 75 countries with over 500 staff members giving material aid to those in need and inspiring the Buddhist concept of compassion in both the givers and receivers of its aid. a factor in its longevity and success. Taiwanese faith-inspired organizations are active abroad as well as in Taiwan. Its activities focus on four areas: international disaster relief. is one of the largest philanthropic organizations in the world. The Ministry of Information in 2006 reported that roughly 18. It began as an organization of 30 housewives who donated a portion of their grocery money to help others in the community. Dharma Drum Mountain. and community volunteer work. floods. 1526 religious organizations were registered with the government (750 at the national level and 776 at the local level). a bone-marrow bank. The largest and most active Buddhist organizations today working in Taiwan and abroad are Tzu-Chi.” Her goal is to serve all of humanity. Tzu Chi attracts many women.G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y As of September 2008. Tzu Chi began its international work in 1991. both laywomen and nuns. In October 2009.105 The majority of Taiwan’s faith-inspired organizations are Buddhist or Taoist. “we must begin by transforming the human heart. said “we should all unite together and cherish and respect our land with the spirit of Great Love. Master Cheng Yen. founder or Tzu-Chi. and that these groups are actively engaged in many sectors in society. She believes that in tackling the world’s problems. compassion. creating a world of kindness. Tzu Chi encourages disaster victims to help those around them and thus also help themselves to become more independent and involved in rebuilding their own communities. belonging to 26 registered religions and religious groups. and other natural disasters. a prominent Taiwanesebased Buddhist organization. There are a smaller number of Christian organizations. introducing modern medicine. alongside the traditional spiritual healing of Buddhist temples. and relies strongly on volunteer work. and equality. The organization has made important contributions to health. Tzu-Chi operates in 51 countries around the world. and reinterpreting relief and volunteer work as a core spiritual practice of Mahayana Buddhism. Tzu Chi remains non-political. following the charismatic character of Master Cheng Yen. heavy machinery. translating Buddhist teachings into everyday practice for Tzu Chi’s members. and rain boots.104 compared to only 17 in 1988. Tzu-Chi volunteers provided emergency aid following flooding in the Philippines and an earthquake in Indonesia.106 Box 12 Tzu Chi The Tzu Chi Foundation. Its international relief work now reaches out to victims of violent conflict. joy. daily smaller donations encourage compassion on a daily basis. who many of her followers believe to be an incarnation of the bohisattva Guanyin. Master Cheng Yen believes that a root cause of many of the world’s problems is a “lack of love for others. and Chung Tai Shan. Fo Guang Shan. combining Buddhist and Confucian spiritual ethics with modern efficient management. the organization was founded in 1966 by Dharma Master Cheng Yen at Pu Ming Temple on the east coast of Taiwan. often received on a daily basis.” Master Cheng Yen uses traditional Buddhist teachings to inspire her aid and relief work. Tzu Chi is a spiritual as well as charitable organization.72 million people in Taiwan are members of one or more religious groups.
and ethnic communities have tended to be quite inwardly focused in terms of politics. has been slowly integrating Islamic law into the country over the past few years. and economic activity. nine percent Christian. address socioeconomic problems and decrease income disparity. The growth of the Islamic bureaucracy and recruitment of Islam studies-trained graduates into the civil service may be a contributing factor to this trend. reflects on and further acknowledges the growing influence of Muslim moral and ethical values. Church burnings in early 2010 were a reaction to a December of 2009 court ruling that allowed the Catholic weekly publication Herald to use the word “Allah” for God. Despite challenges. then Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad acknowledged that rapid economic growth in Malaysia had brought prosperity but also accompanying social problems. Nominally the plan has expired. with about 60 percent of the population legally defined as Muslim. and tradition with economic development as well as to “inculcate sound spiritual. In the Foreword to the Seventh Plan. but many of the quota policies continue.” 2010 marks the final year of the Ninth Malaysia Plan. while trying to maintain harmony and tolerance among its multi-ethnic and religious society. and higher education. and promote development through international cooperation. tensions among both ethnic and religious groups have mounted. is strongly controlled by the government. and ethnicity are explicitly addressed in Malaysia’s development planning. also carrying over to areas including the civil service. Taoist and other traditional Chinese religions.Malaysia An Overview Malaysia has been one of Southeast Asia’s top performing economies over the past two decades. it has enjoyed relative political stability. has significant political sway.107 Approximately 19 percent of the population identifies themselves as Buddhist. Prime Minister Najib Tun 63 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 . This and other religiously linked tensions are the topic of active dissent in Malaysia. and these tensions also have repercussions across Southeast Asia. efforts to rebalance inherited ethnic inequalities. Malaysia’s quite secular traditions are coming under pressure today with several political groups pressing for larger and more formal roles for Islam. however. for which it has earned admiration in Southeast Asia and beyond. education. moral. All ethnic Malays are by law Muslim and are not permitted to convert out of Islam. The United Malays National Organization (UNMO). which historically aimed to promote greater balance (largely political and economic) among the country’s ethnic groups. housing projects. Religion and ethnicity are tightly linked in Malaysia. though in 2009. The plan highlighted the need to incorporate moral and ethical values based on religion. the New Economic Policy aimed to eradicate poverty for all Malaysians by increasing the Malay share of the national economy. Islam. Malaysia ranks 66 of 182 countries in UNDP’s 2009 Human Development Report. particularly in Muslim majority areas. notably an unequal distribution of wealth. Malaysia’s influence in the region is substantial and growing. Recently. including Sharia courts for cases involving Malaysian Muslims. Malaysia’s largest political party. Ethnicity. increase knowledge-based capacity by improving the school system. and it is a middle income country. and Development Islam. Malaysia’s policies have favored ethnic Malay in an effort to rebalance inequalities. ethnic divisions remain distinct. and three percent Confucius. The Constitution (Article 11) assures that “every person has the right to profess and practice his religion” and (Article 3) that “Islam is the religion of the Federation“. Malaysia has made purposeful. which broadly sought to elevate high-tech industry development. Islam plays a prominent role in cotemporary Malaysian culture. In 1971. Ethno-religious tensions have become more visible in recent years. The Seventh Malaysia Plan (1995–2000). A series of five-year economic development plans have aimed to guide development. along with continued emphasis on private sector growth and ethnic balance. and ethical values in order for Malaysia to become fully developed. politics. customs. six percent Hindu. Proselytizing by non-Muslim groups. religion. Other ethno-religious political parties include the Malaysian Indian Muslim Congress and the PanMalaysian Islamic Party. and society. and some observers argue.
Many faith-inspired organizations are active in supporting development and humanitarian/disaster relief at home and abroad. “Ethical investing” and “moral purchasing” are encouraged. and the Government Malaysia’s NGO sector is diverse. Islamic faith-inspired organizations active on humanitarian relief and development include Islamic Relief Malaysia. socio-economic justice. while some report a tendency to favor Musliminspired organizations. NGOs. and the role of Islam in education has been and remains a subject for political as well as educational debate. which is listed on the Kuala Lumpur Stock Exchange. Islamic banking is based on a commitment to spiritual values.109 Malaysia’s educational systems still show the influence of a Muslim bearing. Political opposition parties offered cautious support for constitutional reform and an end to the positive discrimination policies.108 All Malaysians are still required to list their religion on their identity cards. Malaysia’s developed economy and infrastructure facilitate its role as a regional hub for many NGOs. Some of the micro-lending institutions that are active throughout Muslim Southeast Asia. providing disaster relief G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y Box 13 | BERKLEY CENTER The Hajj Fund and Islamic Banking in Malaysia Malaysia has emerged as an international center on Islamic Finance. based on the principles of Sharia. though data is partial and not readily accessible. though non-Muslims are not required to study Islam. Malaysia is a regional leader on education and is actively positioning itself as an education hub for international students. In 2009. The Hajj Fund.Razak announced the abolition of the 30 percent Malay requirement for corporate equity for some service sectors. Prime Minister Najib observed that Islamic finance accounted for 19 percent of Malaysia’s banking assets. Many come from the Muslim world. The government funded the bank at its outset. Banks that follow Sharia are prohibited from investing in anything considered haram and forbidden under Islamic law from partaking in a business operation that may deal with anything haram. The government Registrar of Societies has authority for registering religious organizations. Built on the principles of Sharia. including the Southeast Asia region. Religious Organizations. Since the formation of Bank Islam Malaysia numerous other banks have begun to offer interest-free transactions. All banks in Malaysia that are Islamic or follow Islamic banking practices are required to display the Perbankan Islam logo (left). Islamic banking. The Islamic banking system was born out of this fund. thereby qualifying an organization for government grants and other benefits. both in Malaysia and abroad. 64 . a move which many non-Muslims view as discriminatory. notably Malaysia. but now owns only 13 percent of the Bank. Islam is the only religious instruction provided in public schools. the Bank Islam of Malaysia operates with no interest-based transactions. with both regional and international organizations. In 1962. operate with Islamic principles in mind. allows Muslims to save without being involved in an interestbased system. adhere to several principals including prohibition of riba or usury (removing the payment or acceptance of interests on loans). Indonesia and Bangladesh. which implements relief programming in Southeast Asia and around the world and has been active in Indonesia since 2000. Many Muslim development NGOs have ventured into microfinance following Islamic banking standards. and human brotherhood. The Central Bank of Malaysia reports that 17 licensed Malaysian Islamic banks and four international Islamic banks operate in the country. Malaysia established the “Tabung Haj” or “Hajj Fund” for Muslims to save money to make the pilgrimage to Mecca.
which pro- 65 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 . The government mandated “interracial and religious confidence circles” (IRCCs) in the wake of the September 11.and post-disaster rehabilitation assistance. The Baha’i community office of interfaith activities addresses significant work with youth. and the Salvation Army (Christian). 8 percent are Indian. and 1. By religion. 14 percent are Malay. Buddhist and secular organizations have joined the cause. and the Institute for Southeast Asian Studies. particularly in Southeast Asia. approximately 42 percent are Buddhist. including through a partnership with Soka Gakkai. the Adventist Development and Relief Organization (Christian). several regional secular organizations have their headquarters in Singapore. notably Albanian Muslims in Bosnia and Palestinians. Singapore plays an important regional role. Given Malaysia’s pluralistic ethnic and religious character. Singapore’s Think Centre which works on strengthening civil society within the country and partners with organizations. The Canadian think tank International Development Research Centre (IDRC). Approximately 77 percent of Singaporeans are Chinese. Examples include the Malaysia Interfaith Network. Singapore’s government has actively sought to foster understanding among Singapore’s diverse ethnic and faith groups. Malaysia is home to numerous interfaith initiatives. both national and international. including the Gentle Fund Organization. 9 percent are Taoist. 15 percent are Muslim. the world’s lowest infant mortality rate. including the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN). despite some challenges of government restrictions. World Singapore Singapore has the 8th highest per-capita GDP in the world. 1 percent follows other faiths. whose research addresses a wide variety of region specific issues. As a leader in development in the region.111 vides assistance to orphans and other disadvantaged young people in Vietnam. which has their Southeast Asian/ East Asian headquarters in Singapore. 2001 attacks. and reports that none of its population lives below the poverty line. IRCCs are informal entities intended to promote knowledge and understanding among religious and ethnic groups and also to keep track of grievances and signs of conflict at the community level (information which the national government also utilizes). The Muslim Youth Movement of Malaysia (ABIM) frequently takes vocal stances in support of Muslim causes around the world. including recent joint efforts with the Singapore Hindu Endowments Board to raise money for earthquake victims in China and Myanmar. Singapore is home to many universities. and export-driven. education and health care to displaced Afghans. and 15 percent claim no religious affiliation. pro-foreign investment.112 The organization Mercy Relief brings together Singaporean youth from different faith communities to work on humanitarian charity projects in the region. The Baha’i Center. This success is partly attributable to an economic strategy adopted in the 1960s that was probusiness.110 World Vision Malaysia (Christian) operates in Malaysia with the specific mandate to raise funds and awareness for communities overseas. In 2001. 5 percent are Catholic. 9 percent are Protestant Christian. Jamiyah Singapore. including Christian. ABIM launched Misi Keamanan Sejagat (Global Peace Mission) to provide humanitarian aid. which among its activities works on governance issues. including those related to faith. including interfaith efforts. Several faith-inspired organizations in Singapore are involved in socio-economic development and relief work in Southeast Asia. Some other examples of non-Muslim organizations in Malaysia (some with regional mandates) include the Tzu Chi Foundation (Buddhist). as is heavy investment in education and aggressive campaigns to stop corruption. a Muslim missionary and humanitarian organization. and the United Nations Population Fund interfaith forum “Strengthening Partnerships with Faith-based Organizations (FBOs) in Addressing ICPD. collaborates with nonMuslim religious organizations. combined with investments in strategic state-owned corporations that were directed toward the government.5 percent belong to other ethnicities. 4 percent are Hindu.” involving both Malaysian and Asian faith-inspired organizations. an example being the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy in the National University of Singapore. addressing both disaster relief and longer term development issues. 64 other NGOs. Its achievement in promoting social harmony in its diverse population is another factor in Singapore’s success.
Faith-inspired NGOs have focused on migrant worker rights. the top 10 NGOs in Australia raised $0. Baptist World Aid Australia. A significant number of Muslim organizations are involved in development work in Southeast Asia countries. as well as on advocacy and capacity building within the Church and with civil society on displacement in Southeast Asia and the Pacific. Sisters of Mercy. World Vision Australia works with youth on education. With religious tensions mounting in the region. with significant development interests and activities throughout Southeast Asia. Australia Australia is active in all Southeast Asian countries in many domains.Vision’s Singapore office works both in Singapore and throughout Southeast Asia. Habitat for Humanity (Australia). The largest faith-inspired development organization active in Southeast Asia. and emergency management. However. education. education. Australian Relief and Mercy Services (ARMS). The Baha’i community works both in Australia and abroad as well with a particular focus on indigenous rights in Australia. child protection. good governance. supports programming both in Australia and aboard. and diplomacy. and governance. Muslim Aid.115 Jesuit Refugee Service works with refugees and asylum seekers in Australia and the Southeast Asia region. are increasingly active in Australia. but its religious communities tend to have strong ties to neighboring countries. YWCA Australia. human trafficking. the Australian government and civil society have focused quite sharply on religion and particularly on interfaith dialogue and action. Within Australia as well. health. In 2009. and Australia has supported interreligious dialogue in Indonesia and elsewhere over many years. humanitarian relief. especially from Indonesia. there are numerous other Christian organizations involved in international development work. Caritas Australia. Christian Blind Mission. Australia is a quite secular country. and Palms Australia. Australian faith-inspired organizations are actively engaged in relief and development work across Southeast Asia on topics including corruption. education. 70 percent of which was for faith-inspired organizations. Feed The Hungry Australia. has partnered with faith-inspired organizations at home and abroad. as well as engaging in interfaith work on disaster relief and conflict resolution. Other Christian faith-inspired organizations include.8 billion of total official development assistance (ODA) in 2009–2010. with respect to reach and budget. 2009. health. Australia is an influential actor in regional development policy. one of the largest. including economics. The Adventist Development and Relief Agency Australia (ADRA) works across the Mekong region and the Pacific on a broad spectrum of relief activities. particularly through the Catholic Church. notably the Scalabrini Sisters in the Philippines.114 Apart from World Vision. economic development. collaborating with local organizations on project implementation. and leisure-time activities. Climate change in particular has attracted recent much attention. US$2. as well as continuing support for international development through the most recent world economic crisis. forecast to provide US$3. Assemblies of God in Australia World Relief. including food security. Christian Child Fund. health. Of this figure. and the environment and BERKLEY CENTER | 66 . TEAR Australia. a secular NGO. World Vision has been influential in advocacy work with the government for involving civil society in social development work. children and youth. training courses. civil society strengthening. It is in this context that Australian faith-inspired organizations are active participants in development discussions and action across the region. is World Vision Australia. the percentage of development funds going to or through faith-inspired organizations is relatively small. with around 50 percent of all overseas giving. specifically as a likely cause of migration from Southeast Asia countries to Australia. This is giving rise to a progressively more energetic set of organizations and influences. Australia is one of the largest aid donors in the Pacific Rim.82 billion is to go to the Asia Pacific region.113 G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y climate change. This stance was one reason why the World Parliament of Religions met in Melbourne in December. HOME.6 Billion. and immigrant communities. As a proportion of total Australian development assistance. Most of these organizations are attached to local churches that provide pastoral services.
their work includes fund-raising. Faithinspired organizations within the European Union receive subsidies both at the EU level and by national governments. Indonesia.United States and Europe The private roles of faith-inspired organizations from the United States and Europe across Southeast Asia are varied and. tuberculosis. Japan. Fin land. conflict resolution. Indonesia. both within Europe and abroad. the largest coalition of U. including religious schools and social and health services. members of InterAction. and Thailand are among PEPFAR’s target countries. The US government quite actively involves faith-inspired organizations in its development strategy. Austria. USAID’s total request for funds for the East Asia/Pacific region for fiscal year 2009 was approximately US$544 million. as an example. and mosques engaged in community level relief and development. 34 percent of PEPFAR funds went to faith-inspired organizations. In 2007. 25 percent of students attend publically funded Catholic schools. including in Southeast Asia.8 billion in U. of which many are faith-inspired.120 Apart from government funding. temples. and malaria. both domestically and internationally.S. and increase coordination with the key donors in the region. France. at times. notably the 2004 tsunami. and New Zealand. In France.116 AIDS. Greece.121 and Sweden legally separated church and state in 2000. US foundations and private organizations actively work with faith-inspired organizations.” which engages organizations working worldwide. education. the Protestant and Roman Catholic churches. and short and long-term missions. including Australia. including Southeast Asia. Between 2001 and 2005. The actors range from large international organizations such as World Vision and Catholic Relief Service. a significant contributor to development policy dialogue and programs in the region. Denmark. This offers an example of a program which has worked purposefully to engage faith communities. overseas development assistance and $6 billion in private funds. United States The large and diverse United States faith-inspired development community is active in most all Southeast Asian countries. works with Christian colleges and universities in the Philippines. five have state religions. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID). as well as Judaism (though not Islam—the third largest faith in the country).117 The United Board for Christian Higher Education in Asia. with USAID funding. In 2006. The Asia Foundation is an example of a foundation that works closely with faithinspired organizations and the government. and Sweden are constitutionally secular states but provide direct or indirect subsidies for institutions associated with recognized faiths. The US government gives particular focus in its Asia Pacific strategy to regional cooperation. USAID financing of faith-based organizations abroad doubled. and Italy all subsidize faith-inspired organizations. The United Methodist Committee on Relief is presently engaged in Southeast Asia as well with USAID support. managed $2. In Germany. to local churches. and environmental protection. The Berkley Center reviews that focused on the United States and on Europe address the range and scope of faith-inspired work in those regions in far greater depth. Norway.S. trafficking of people. US$48 billion budget to combat global HIV/ Europe Religious leaders and faith-inspired organizations engage actively in social dialogue and development. collection of material donations. Myanmar. The share and form that this takes varies according to the statutes and traditions of each country in relation to religion. has a small office for “faith-based and community initiatives.-based international NGOs.119 Cambodia. working in Burma (Myanmar) and Indonesia on disaster relief assistance.122 International aid in the European Union is channeled through two primary institutions: ECHO (European Community Humanitarian Aid Office) and the European Commissions’ External Co-operation 67 2010 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | . Of the European Union’s (EU) 27 member-states. Areas of focus include human rights. Germany.118 The President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) has a 5 year. Of particular note is their dynamic and significant presence during major humanitarian emergencies. and it aims to emphasize regional responses as opposed to bilateral. health. and Singapore. are entitled to federally collected church taxes and have the right to run state-subsidized religious social services and hospitals. the Netherlands. Thailand. Taiwan. This section briefly highlights some major institutions and trends as they apply in Southeast Asia.
BERKLEY CENTER | 68 .G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y Programs office (EuropeAid). or decentralized through state registered organizations (ex. and is active in multiple countries in Asia. and World Vision Germany. WFP. working through local partners and Catholic networks to reach difficult to access locations. Many European based faith-inspired NGOs work in Southeast Asia. Progressio (UK). has many programs in Southeast Asia. one of the largest and most active Catholic Charities in world. headquartered in the United Kingdom. Tearfund UK. and FAO are examples). temples. most EU countries have some form of institutionalized foreign aid mechanism. Many international organizations headquartered in Europe work in Southeast Asia. Sweden. including many United Nations institutions that cooperate to a degree with faith. is one of the largest Muslim-inspired aid organizations in the world. Germany. Catholic Agency For Overseas Development (CAFOD) (UK). Christian Aid (UK). and Italy. or mosques). On a country level. UNESCO. Muslim Aid (UK). Other large European faith-inspired organizations include Cordaid (Netherlands). with a regional office located in Bangkok. whether at the national level. Caritas Internationalis was one of the first responders to Cyclone Nargis in Burma (Myanmar). including a large program in Indonesia. Caritas Internationalis. headquartered in the Vatican. churches. Netherlands. Islamic Relief.inspired organizations (WHO. The largest European country donors include France. Newly admitted countries to the EU are also creating international development agencies. United Kingdom.
69 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 .
Walden. China Everbest Printing Company. Harper. The social welfare of Muslim organizations. The authors argue that religion and personal faith can make positive contributions to development. Policy Center. Luningning. go beyond a Muslim’s individual obligation to aid the poor through zakat. Sharon M. A useful reference for examining regional cooperation around the environment in Southeast Asia. this book offers analyses on how different religions intersect with development and humanitarian work. Boomgard.” Singapore: National University of Singapore.worldbank.pdf. David. religious. the authors argue. culminating in the ecological effects of recent economic and population growth.” in The Lab. it offers perspectives from practitioners of different faiths and their reflections on the Church. Baharuddin. development. Chapter 8 includes a discussion of Philippine land reform. Coming from the perspective that development organizations have been overlooking the role and influence of religion on peoples’ lives. Jakarta: ASEAN. Chandler. Agricultural Land Redistribution: Toward Greater Consensus. basic education. The World Bank. 2004. Consequently. Boomgard’s book gives a thorough environmental history of Southeast Asia.org/INTARD/Resources/Ag_Land_ Redistribution. and the connectedness of religion and development. Makati City. Santa Barbara: ABC-CLIO.org/8914. Of particular importance for this report is the discussion on the role of the Catholic Church in the pro-peasant movement encouraging rural farmers to claim rights to their land. The Anti-Development State: The Political Economy of Permanent Crisis in the Philippines. ed. “Presented at Conference—Preliminary Asian Cultural Forum—Connecting Networks. Commissioned by the International Development Research Center. 2nd ed. A History of Cambodia. They specifically blame the “EDSA system. http://siteresources. Christopher. 2005. Association of Southeast Asian Nations. Azizan.edu/Polisci/Candland/KBIndonesia. Bertrand. the definition of the Indonesian nation and what it means to be Indonesian has come under scrutiny. Religion and Development. as a main factor in the economic-political problems that have mired the country since then. and the challenges and emerging issues surrounding land reform. the World Bank. and women’s organizations (aided in part by a high level of internet connectivity) within Singaporean civil society are advancing change and to some degree contesting the status quo-conserving People’s Action Party government. The Temple and the Market: Reflections at the Intersection of Science. This section gives a general overview of programs. Washington: The World Bank.Appendix 1 Annotated Bibliography Achacoso-Sevilla. Asian Institution of Management. 2008. http://www. Jacques. Candland. wellesley.” which unseated dictator Ferdinand Marcos. New York: Zed Books. ASEAN Cooperation on Environment. Hinduism. Peter. It also outlines the governance structure of ASEAN as it pertains to implementing or addressing the above. health. Chiang Mai Thailand: Silkworm Books. and Nurjanah Siti. 71 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 . Chua. http://www. which left the country unprepared for political and social change. 2007. and government resources. Nationalism and Ethnic Conflict in Indonesia. from prehistoric times to the present day. and that some organizations have become important agents for social change.htm. plans.aseansec. Bello. Beng Huat. et al. Ottawa: Kumarian International Development Research Center. and economic growth. It raises interesting debate vis-à-vis the Catholic’s Church stance on contraception and birth control. The essay contains information about Nahdlatul Ulama’s family planning campaign as well as the varied role of women and women’s organizations across the country. Singapore: A report on civil society organizations and activities. 2000. Chua’s paper describes how arts. initiatives and priority areas developed by ASEAN to address environmental issues that affect Southeast Asia.” February 2004. The author examines religious and ethnic conflict within the complex Indonesian context. Southeast Asia: An Environmental History. 2004. Bello and his co-authors attempt to explain the problems with poverty and underdevelopment that the Philippines has faced since the Epifanio de los Santos Avenue (EDSA) “revolution. It is of particular interest for gleaning insight into the role of religion confronting the environment today in light of a modernizing society. 2005. “Rediscovering the Resources of Religion. and how that has affected society. The Ties that Bind: Population and Development in the Philippines. housing. Philippines.pdf. This book discusses the correlation of population growth in the Philippines with issues of food security. 2009. as well as touching on the complex interplay between religion and the environment in the region. green. Bertrand argues that recent ethnic and religious conflicts in Indonesia are the result of the constraints imposed by Suharto’s regime.” and its weakness in disciplining private sector activity. 2009. ed.P. Chapter 8. “Women’s Empowerment through Islamic Organizations: The Role of the Indonesia’s Nahdlatul Ulama in Transforming the Government’s Birth Control Programme into a Family Welfare Programme.
com. “Development Issues and the Role of Religious Organizations in Indonesia. “The Ordination of a Tree: The Buddhist Ecology Movement in Thailand. 2004. Ronald J.pdf. Brown. no. as well as an analysis of Cambodia in face of the changes presented to society by globalization.unhcr. Susan M. “Girls’ and Women’s Education in Indonesia. Washington: Southeast Asia Studies Program. Jami. “The Growing NGO Lobby in Vietnam. The author displays that Buddhist organizations have been an important actor in social service provision in Taiwan.” University of Pittsburgh. with notable attention to the reign of Pol Pot. New York: M. with information about their family planning campaign. ed. native Vietnamese religious groups).org/refworld/ docid/469dc7b4c. religion. This report recounts assertions by Lao exiles in France describing expulsions by Laotian government forces of Lao ethnic minority Christians who refuse to renounce their faith. vol. This text gives attention to those in Karnataka (India). Washington: GPO for the Library of Congress. This book includes a case study on Taiwan and the role of Buddhist organizations throughout Taiwanese history and their relationships with different systems of government. Development. http:// news. Armonk. and Tra Kieu (Vietnam).pdf. Numerous temples. Ethnology.ffrd.html?article_id=7735 6f5298a3c964965a3e969fddc801. An account of how monks in Thailand have used tree ordination for environmental protection. This volume includes a discussion of Buddhism and Catholicism in Vietnam (and a short section about some of the smaller. carry the images of India’s great narratives. 2008. 1 (Fall 2004). but also in Southeast Asia. Java (Indonesia). Fontein.” It raises the often close relationship between ethnic and religious conflicts. development. 1–15.org. Epley. have given NGOs in Vietnam greater ability to influence government activity with regard to their sectoral concerns. eds. 2006. Clarke. Tun-jen and Deborah A. A study of how ancient India’s incredibly rich literary heritage has been visually represented.” Nguoi-viet. It discusses theoretical aspects. 2006. Inc. 1 (Winter. Addresses the role of organizations in bolstering social services where government was lacking and their relationships with authoritarian governments and democratic ones. eds.David Chandler provides an in-depth analysis of Cambodian history. Religious Organizations and Democratization: Case Studies from Asia. as well as Chapter 6 focusing on the role of the Catholic Bishop’s Conference of the Philippines’ involvement in electoral politics and promoting citizen engagement after the Marcos regime. As recounted in this article. both lack partitions between church and state. 1998): pp. Boston: Koln Brill. the experience of some foreign religious organizations provides an alternative. including the creation of governmentsanctioned churches to control religious practice in the country. This book contains discussions of the intersection of faith.E. Civil Society. “Foreign Religious Organizations in Vietnam: Law and Practice. It notes that while the Bush Administration and the Christian Right have criticized Vietnam for violations of religious freedom. http://www. 2000. Series II. and civil society in broad terms. This background paper discusses the legal status of foreign religious organizations in Vietnam and how they are able to operate because of and despite of that status. the Prince. Cheng. ed.” Fund for Reconciliation & Development. http://www. 6 Dec 2008. “Christians allegedly persecuted in Laos. no.org/news/view_article.” Radio Free Asia. 37. vol.org/ Foreign%20Religious%20Organizations%20in%20Vietnam. Religion and Religiosity in the Philippines and Indonesia. and Marijke Klokke. in light of changing societal pressures in Thailand. Cima.org/fileadmin/user_upload/appeal/ gender/indonesia. Friend. Gerald. Darlington.newamericamedia.” Studies on Asia. provides interpretations. Useful in examining the continued influence of Indian culture and Hinduism in Southeast Asia. not only in South Asia. Jennifer. changes in government policy making in Vietnam. Case studies on Muhammadiyah and Nahdlatul Ulama are included. Narrative Sculpture and Literary Traditions in South and Southeast Asia (Studies in Asian Art and Archaeology).us/vietnam/. Vietnam: A Country Study.Of the Commonwealth System of Higher Education. and trying to tease out the complexities of faith and its relationship to social dynamics.” UNESCO Bangkok Office http://www. Theodore.html.unescobkk. 21 March 2007. and proposes interpretations through advanced comparative and contextual approaches. Farkas. Angkor (Cambodia). Jan.. and Michael Jennings. taking a comparative look. which mandate impact assessments for and the consultation of public opinion regarding new laws. ministry denies charges. and Faith-Based Organizations. The paper provides a general framework to analyze the intersection of economics. BERKLEY CENTER | G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y 72 . Report in News. The authors find that while neither country promotes a state religion. He pays special attention to the implications of recent history on present day Cambodia. 1. http://countrystudies. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. as well as about religion and development in Indonesia more generally. more nuanced view of the state of religion in present-day Vietnam. and politics with regards to development issues in Indonesia.newamericamedia. The report also cites government responses describing any conflict in Christian ethnic minority areas as “local” issues that are not based on religion because Laos “has a law guaranteeing religious freedom. and the period following the Vietnamese invasion in 1979. Sharpe. 1987. A particularly interesting argument on the evolving relations between religion and the state in light of modernization and development. The essays in this book deal with different topics related to religion and society in the Philippines and Indonesia.
In the case of Southeast Asia.htm. His analysis of involvement in human trafficking is of particular interest in the Southeast Asia context. the Thai government has helped these organs of the Laotian state track down. “The Globalization of Religious Advocacy in America. “Hmong Suffer Religious Persecution in SE Asia. Of particular relevance for this report is the author’s account of how the king today remains a symbol of unity despite the political tensions that are boiling in the country. Allen. contextualizing it within the development of the latter. 28 July 2006. particularly post September 11. and environmental degradation. covering the historical. economic. undp. Nong Khai and Washington: Center for Public Policy Analysis. Handley. David L. he argues. He cites specific examples. limited access to scholarships.” Center for Public Policy Analysis. as well as some of the Catholic Church’s broader environmental activism. New York: United Nations Development Programme Newsroom. http://www. non-state. The author proposes strategies to increase girls’ access to education at all levels. from human trafficking to Tibet to Darfur as areas around which religions are working together for a common cause. born in the United States and raised in Switzerland. In some cases. distance of schools. Web. but cooperation on environmental work can contribute to constructive progress. in this edited volume. given its regional/ transnational character. “Lao Government and civil society move closer to one another.” For the purpose of this report. USA: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. Especially interesting is the discussion of how the king. The King Never Smiles: A Biography of Thailand’s Bhumibol Adulyadej. 7 May 2009. the author states. has heightened international awareness and increased engagement by religious interest groups. 28 February 2010.info/?p=3318. 2004. political. social justice. ramifications on relations between diverse Muslim communities. Robert.” E International Relations. and socio-cultural development of the Chinese in Malaysia. 2000. harass.en. regional. Hing. Allen. The Chinese In Malaysia (South-East Asian Social Science Monographs).co.e-ir. are: limited family income. Includes statistics and data. Goldoftas. and religious freedom in particular. This volume serves as a reference on the Catholic Bishop’s Conference of the Philippine’s (CBCP) actions on deforestation. discussing the contributions that notable Thai Buddhist figures such as Buddhadasa Bhikku and Sulak Sivaraksa have made in this area. brings to light the challenges and realties facing Islamic education in Southeast Asia. Lee Kam. UNDP discusses a conference held in Vientiane. and NGOs. Paul M. Religion and Ecology in India and Southeast Asia. Gosling. The main challenges to girls in attending school. exploring both religious and secular schools. Robert Hefner.nz/stories/ WO0905/S00160. Laos in late August. Hertzke. and the political ramifications at the national. 2006. 2001. His purpose in writing the book is to “shed light on the varieties and politics of Islamic education in modern Southeast Asia. In this press release. This influential book analyzes the increasing trend of collaboration between affected groups on international issues of human rights. This is a comprehensive study of one of the three major ethnic groups which make up the Malaysian society and nation. and that their inclusion in policy discussions may contribute slowing the process of strengthening democratic institutions. ed. Making Modern Muslims: The Politics of Islamic Education in Southeast Asia. New York: Oxford University Press. He cites human trafficking and track-two diplomacy as two areas of increased involvement. This report first gives an overview of the global situation of human trafficking.” United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. The Green Tiger: The Costs of Ecological Decline in the Philippines. The author finds that religious organizations. “Global Report on Trafficking in Persons. Hawaii University Press. and international levels.scoop. http:// www.An overview of the shortcomings in gender equality in the Indonesian school system. 2007. Allen Hertzke examines the role of international religious networks in engaging international relation and social causes across borders. or even kill Hmong who have fled into Thailand (including some Lao American citizens). including state. which included as participants Lao govern- 73 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 . from a childhood in the West to ascending to the thrown in Thailand. 2009. Oxford: Oxford University Press. capture. the government. and Tan Chee Beng. Globalization. New York: UNODC. the author’s analysis of Islamic influence on education in Malaysia and Cambodia highlighted regional tensions around the content of Islamic education. Chapter 6 is a case study of Buddhist ecological thought and action in Thailand. Yale University Press. Freeing God’s Children: The Unlikely Alliance for Global Human Rights. and religious actors. New York: Routledge. traditional role of women in society. Hefner. This press release describes some of the recent campaigns and operations against dissident Hmong ethnic and/or religious groups (mostly Buddhist and Christian) by the Lao People’s Army and government security forces.” United Nations Development Programme. http://content. all have deeply rooted views on the environment. The author provides a provocative account of the king’s life. and the various actors that are involved in education in Indonesia. Chapter 5 of this book discusses the connections between ecology and Buddhism. 17 Oct 2007. and then provides country profiles (categorized by region) for 155 UN member states regarding the status of human trafficking within each. February 2009. Hertzke. forcibly repatriate. came to hold the status of bodhisattva. Barbara. economic development.org/go/newsroom/2007/october/lao-government-civilsociety-20071017. the phenomenon that Hertzke describes is of particular importance for human trafficking. 2001.
civil society and economics. their history.org/Documents/Reports/ Civil-Society-Briefs/PHI/CSB-PHI. The author provides multiple case studies. 23 Jun 2005. related to this. but the future of non-profits in the country remains unclear. in contrast to Samuel Huntington’s “Clash of Civilizations. 2009. The authors specifically focus on how transnational civil society groups and their activities are related to democracy at the macro and micro levels. The article reports on the Christian organization.adb. its international network and linkages. Richard. Democracy’s Dharma: religious renaissance and political development in Taiwan University of California Press.ac.washingtonpost. and the multiple controversies surrounding their work. and the effects of each on the political. though.org/KnoWleDge/news/2009/05-21. “Progress and Struggle for Vietnam’s Catholics. and some Catholic clergy continue to be persecuted and imprisoned for “unpatriotic” activities. He provides discussion on the recent divisions within Islam. still challenges for Catholics. including religious organizations and their work in relief and development in Asia. “Lao PDR Approves Decree for Non-Profit Associations. Political Islam in Southeast Asia. including the high profile media coverage. Piscatori. educational. The author points to Thailand’s Buddhist heritage as being influential in informing a Thai understanding of governance. particularly from Japan. This book provides an in-depth analysis of Islam in Southeast Asia. or meaning. Ranjana.” http://www. Means.pdf. This book examines how the transnational nature of religious movements leads to the formation of transnational civil society and a fading state sovereignty. as well as in regional narrative. http://www. and in practice. 2008. There are.” Essay written for UNESCO. Provides an excellent overview of transnational Buddhist organizations in Asia. Power. including one of Shanti Volunteer organization and their work in the refugee camps along the Thai-Cambodia border. members of Lao civil society. collaboration with local authorities. Accessed 27 October 2009.pdf. BERKLEY CENTER | G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y 74 . The report highlights the impressive capacity of civil society organizations in the Philippines. and economic realms. This report provides an overview of the topography of NGOs and civil society in the Philippines. Transnational Religion and Fading States. Madsen.” “Presented at 2009 Academic Conference on Humanistic Buddhism—Taiwan. The author. Transnational Activism in Asia: Problems of Power and Democracy. as there is no standing law regulating their activity. the essay examines the cultural aspects that contribute to a population’s understanding of governance. This article details the gains in freedom of worship (which are partly due to the Vietnamese government’s 2004 Ordinance on Religion) that some Catholics in Vietnam have enjoyed. between liberal and moderate views and more fundamentalist or radical views.chula.doc. James.cuhk. the article notes. “Cultural factors that shape governance in South-East Asia. and Anders Uhlin.com/ wp-dyn/content/article/2005/06/22/AR2005062202182. May 1999. For the purpose of this report. The paper argues that globalization and increased communications technologies have facilitated cross-cultural networking and information exchange between Buddhist organizations worldwide. Thailand. beginning to create a framework for future cooperation between government and civil society. and government and civil society representatives from several South Asian and Southeast Asian countries. “Overview of NGOs and Civil Society: Philippines. 2004. 2007. Through varied case studies from Malaysia. Susanne Hoeber. its historical progression in Southeast Asian societies.ment officials. International Justice Mission. In this press release. Mukhopadhyaya. New York/London: Routledge.netserv. both in the definition. as well as religious roles in adding an ethics. Indonesia. Nicola. Ellen.” looks at local origins of conflict and the potential of religious organizations to make peace as well as war. Nakashima. Phongpaichit. the author argues the point that Islam in Southeast Asia in not a monolithic voice. Westwood Press. as well as their promotion of social accountability. A discussion of the four largest Taiwanese religious organizations. http:// pioneer. Samantha. United States/ United Kingdom: Lynne Reinner Publishers. staff and organizational capacity.icnl. 19 January 2009. the Vietnamese government still does not have diplomatic relations with the Holy See. 1997. In general.” manifesting itself differently in each country. A Christian lawyer’s global crusade. Washington: International Center for Not-For-Profit Law. notably Tzu Chi and their role in bridging the gap between civil society and government and the oftentimes fluid relationship between organizations and the government. This book contains information about transnational organizations. legal status. “Transnational Networks of Dharma and Development: Engaged Buddhism in the Era of Globalization. as well as specific organizational involvement with the Asian development Bank. The decree authorizes the Public Administration and Civil Service Authority to register and monitor these organizations.” International Center for Not-For-Profit Law.th/~ppasuk/culturalgovernance. The article brings to light the positive work the organization does. this conference was aimed at helping the Lao government understand the potential role for Lao civil society in development and.” The New Yorker. Gordon P. and their activities to rescue victims of human trafficking. http://www.htm. but rather “a religion of many faces. and Rudolph.hk/crs/cshb/conference/note/march09/Paper_Ranjana%20Mukhopadhyaya.” Asian Development Bank. Pasuk. to politics. http:// www. the ICNL announces the promulgation by the Lao government of a decree regarding the regulation and operation of NGOs in Laos.” The Washington Post. education. 21 May 2009.edu. Piper.html. particularly compared to other faiths. “The Enforcer.and its influence on politics. and the Philippines.
2002. Additionally. religion.org/en/news/2008/05/07/ vietnam-religious-freedom-denied. The authors of this paper discusses the changing context for civil society in Vietnam.C. and international treaties. Wilson. Gavin Chua Hearn. The author examines domestic and regional tourism. New York: Routledge. and T.” Human Rights Watch.” Johannesburg: CIVICUS. New York. It mentions different hybridizations between the two faiths. and how donors interact with Vietnamese civil society. and development that draw particular international attention in Asia. and Thailand. and Thai women in the context of economic globalization. This paper discusses the government’s establishment of Inter-Racial and Religious Confidence Circles in Singapore as part of the government’s anti-terrorism strategy. Tim. Routledge. the different types of organizations within Vietnamese civil society. Web. Asia on Tour: Exploring the rise in Asian Tourism. it highlights some of the heritage. and increased globalization. increasing disposable incomes. and the legal framework in which these organizations operate. but that Islamic influence on economic development has been marginal.html. Sabharwal. rather than Westerners. as much of the trafficking is intrastate. Peggy Teo.html. Malaysia. 8 May 2008. For the purposes of this report. The book focuses on the rise of tourism in Asia among Asians. The situation of human trafficking seems to be worsening. 13 Feb 2009. liberalized economies.hrw. The author cites this effort as a contributor to Singapore’s relative stability amid an array of lowintensity conflicts in Southeast Asia. “Singapore’s Approach to Counterterrorism: From Social Resilience to Public Imagination.” Journal of Islamic Studies 9:2 (1998): 259–276. Globalization. http://www. Philippine.org/content/UN_Says_Human_Trafficking_ Appears_To_Be_Worsening_/1492561. Manila: Asian Development Bank. Human Rights Watch discussed the restrictions on religious freedom and human rights that occurred even as Vietnam hosted the United Nations Day of Visak (the sacred Buddhist holiday). This volume situates the socio-legal status of Indonesian. 75 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS | 2010 . Winter. 2007.org/component/content/article/176/32074. Culture. even though a majority of the countries surveyed in the report have enacted laws against the practice. culture.” Singapore: IntSight. particularly at the village level. the legal and institutional frameworks of the respective countries. November 2009. Around this time. “Civil Society in Vietnam. and Society in Laos. Yuit. The author examines Malaysia’s impressive economic growth and the role of Islamic thought and practice in this growth. Gita. and includes some comments by UNODC chief Antonio Maria Costa about the report. “Vietnam: Religious Freedom Denied. and Than Thi Thien Huong. Chapter 9 of this book includes a brief discussion of animism in Laos and its relationship to Buddhism. Human Rights Watch calls on the Vietnamese government to release people imprisoned for peaceful religious or political activities and end restrictions on independent religious organizations who choose not to affiliate with the officially authorized religious organizations under the control of the government. http://www. the Vietnamese government imprisoned members of independent Buddhist groups. In this article.” Radio Free Europe News—Prauge: Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty.Rehbein. Malaysian.rferl. Rodney. Jul 2005. Boike. “Sociolegal Status of Women in Indonesia. more effective border security does not appear to be a key factor in stemming the practice. are enabling an increasing number of Asians to travel as tourists. Philippines. as opposed to interstate. It offers country-specific recommendations for legal reform. “Islam and Malaysia’s Economic Development. as well as government antagonism of animism. 2008. Chang. globalpolicy. New York. This article summarizes some of the findings of the 2009 UNODC Global Report on Trafficking in Persons. He concludes that Islam has been an important factor in Malaysia’s political evolution. and how improvements in infrastructures.” Asian Development Bank. “UN Says Human Trafficking Appears To Be Worsening. http://www.
http://www1.00. Peace.1923211. spirituality based development. 21. This report focuses on the lower income countries of Southeast Asia: Indonesia. “The Globalization of Religious Advocacy in America. James Piscatori and Susanne Hoeber Piscatori. Interview with Dr. Freeing God’s Children: The Unlikely Alliance for Global Human Rights. human rights. It reflects some information covering Asia. 15 February 2009. 13.html (accessed 18 March 2010).8599. Laos.com/modules/xpress/2009/02/15/.html. Allen Hertzke. 14. (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers. 14 April.rferl.1891171.” The New Yorker.info/?p=3318.” UNICEF EAPRO. Peggy Teo. USA. 12. Coverage of Timor-Leste and the South Pacific is less detailed. 20.htm. 19 January 2009.time. in partnership with CNN.00.edu/ World Faiths Development Dialogue: http://berkleycenter. and ecological problems. and other thinkers and social activists Buddhists and non-Buddhists. 77 BERKLEY CENTER REPORTS 6. With support from the Henry R. also referred to as socially engaged Buddhism. 15 September 2009.Endnotes 1.unicef. 2000). “Interfaith Health-Care Reform.” Time Magazine. began in February 1989 in Thailand at a conference of 36 concerned ordained and lay people from 11 countries organized by Sulak Sivaraksa. 7. http://www. Vietnam. Ibid. http://www. 2010). Jan Fontein and Marijke Klokke. Hannah Beech. that have significant transnational activities in Southeast Asia. 18. Thailand. Europe. 13 February 2009. http://www. Katherine Marshall.pdf. 5.com/onfaith/georgetown/ 009/08/faith_in_health_1. (accessed 21 February. “Regional Review Buddhist Leadership Initiative.org/eapro/AW_ BLI_2Sep09. (accessed 18 March 2010). New York: 2009).e-ir. 17.gov/g/drl/rls/irf/2009/127271. diversity tolerance and interfaith dialogue. 28 February 2010. 2004). originated about 25 years ago with the Vietnamese monk Thich Nhat Hanh and is concerned with utilizing Buddhist teachings to confront and act upon social. Tim Winter. 4. 15 September 2009. 26. 8. Conducted by Michael Bodakowski. and Burma (Myanmar). “UN Says Human Trafficking Appears To Be Worsening. one of the largest international engaged Buddhist networks. 26 October. 2. A commitment to global community based on the universal truths of wisdom and compassion guides all of INEB’s activities. America and Australia.no-trafficking.” Hindu Press International.” Time Magazine. Ibid. peacebuilding. 2009. (Routledge. 24. as well as Europe and the United States. http:// www. Berkley Center for Religion. An understanding of engaged Buddhism has emerged which integrates the practice of Buddhism with social action for a healthy. A Christian lawyer’s global crusade. Maruyama Teruo. and Labor.com/english/news/a-13-2009-09-15-voa9-68709782. 1997). 25. http://www. Ibid.html (accessed 21 April 2010).time. Chang. Samantha Power. http://berkleycenter. “Bangkok Protests End. http://www. (Westwood Press.” Voice of America. (accessed 26 March 2010). “Aceh Province Legislators Vote to Impose Stricter Sharia Law. just.” E International Relations.org/web/. Ibid. Philippines. “Hindu and Buddhist Clergy Convene In Cambodia. INEB’s areas of concern have centered on peace. Cambodia.hinduismtoday.” Georgetown/On Faith Washington Post Blog. “The International Network of Engaged Buddhists (INEB). http://www.” Radio Free Europe. the Social Science Research Council is engaged in a research project that focuses specifically on religious roles in conflict. more broadly defined.edu/topics/religion-andglobal-development?record_type=organizations.html (accessed 16 March 2010). Human Rights. 10. 22.org/cambodia. Hannah Beech.com/time/world/article/0. Transnational Religion and Fading States. 2010 2. state.org/ content/UN_Says_Human_Trafficking_Appears_To_Be_ Worsening_/1492561.georgetown. and T.georgetown.edu/wfdd. (accessed 23 February 2010). and World Affairs: http:// berkleycenter. 2004. Narrative Sculpture and Literary Traditions in South and Southeast Asia—Studies in Asian Art and Archaeology. Allen Hertzke.” United States Department of State Bureau of Democracy. 3. | .html (accessed 13 April 2010). “The Enforcer. 23. political. “Indonesia’s Aceh Passes Stoning Bill. 19. Engaged Buddhism. html.inebnetwork. July 2009. 15. 16 August 2009. voanews. 9. (Boston: Koln Brill.com/ time/world/article/0. and development. United Nations Inter-Agency Project on Human Trafficking (UNIAP). The network expanded through out years and included members—individuals and organizations—from more than 20 countries from Asia. Asia on Tour: Exploring the rise in Asian Tourism.washingtonpost. http://www.” From the organization website— http://www. It also explores work in several of the region’s wealthier countries.8599.georgetown. 6 November 2009.C. Thais Mulle as a Divided Nation. and peaceful world. http://newsweek. “International Religious Freedom Report 2009—Indonesia. gender issues. David Steinberg. 16. Luce Foundation. 11.
Poverty in the Philippines: Income. Australia. GPO for the Library of Congress. 39. 52.pdf (accessed 29 March 2010).org/esa/population/ publications/wpp2008/wpp2008_text_tables.pdf (accessed 14 April 2010).” Millennium Challenge Corporation Fact Sheet. “Civil Society Engagement in Asia: Six Country Profiles. 2006. http://www.or.who.us/philippines/34.worldbank. Iglesia ni Cristo (INC) was founded in 1914. 44. “Development Issues and the Role of Religious Organizations in Indonesia. Jennifer Epley. “World Population Prospects. “Family and Community Health. is often difficult to discern..” UNICEF Indonesia Webpage. Ibid. 15. “Overview—Basic Education For All.usaid.adb. http://www. Phnom Penh. Asian Development Bank. php?lang=en. usaid.asp?id=ow3 (accessed 15 April 2010). 46. “Issue Brief: The Role of Religious Leaders and Communities in Development Efforts in Asia and the Middle East. traditionalists is a term applied to those who tend to practice Islam as it traditionally has been adhered to in Indonesia. 35. however. http://www. “The World Bank and Education in Indonesia. December 2007.org/Documents/Books/Poverty-in-the-Philippines/ Poverty-in-the-Philippines. Ronald E. From Workshop on Global Development and Institutions Inspired by Faith. David Chandler.edu/Cambodia_ Consultation_Interview_Compilation.id/page. December 14–15.pdf . Cambodia.georgetown.org/ WBSITE/EXTERNAL/COUNTRIES/ EASTASIAPACIFICEXT/INDONESIAEXTN/0. “Philippines Infrastructure for Rural Productivity: Enhancement Tools for Identifying Rural Infrastructure Investment Priorities.” Bangkok: International Labor Office. Series II. http://www. The church has a membership of 2.pdf (accessed 30 March 2010). http://www. 47.csidonline.org/public/english/region/ asro/bangkok/library/download/pub06-07. A History of Cambodia. and maintains significant political influence because of its growing membership and resources. Cambodia.27. 48. Asia..html (accessed 15 April 2010).” Studies on Asia. and Access.edu/Polisci/Candland/ KBIndonesia. 2009. 1 (Fall 2004). with some citing a tendency towards convergence.” Civil Society Briefs. 38.edu/ interviews/a-discussion-with-maguid-maruhom-executivedirector-ummah-fi-salam. 33. http://www. and Africa. “Overview of NGOs and Civil Society: Philippines. http://www. Oceania.berkleycenter. “Interfaith Dialogue: Program Description. Modernist typically refers to those following Islamic practice as it adhered to in the Arab world.org/documents/pdf/6th_Annual_ Conference-RobinBush. gov/mcc/bm.org/indonesia/education. 37. Cameron Lowry.isp. Silkworm Books (Chang Mai. 17.html (accessed 15 April 2010). Philippines: A Country Study. http://indonesia. Chris Donnges.doc/factsheet-101409-listening-to-muslimcommunities. Socio-Pastoral— http://repository. https://www. http://countrystudies.un.” World Health Organization—Indonesia Webpage.gov/en/ cross_cutting/inter_faith_dialogue/ (accessed 15 April 2010).htm (accessed 14 April. Phnom Penh.wellesley.org/en/ countries/country_fact_sheets/cty_fs_IDN. Ibid. http://www. BERKLEY CENTER | G E O R G E TOW N U N I V E R S I T Y 78 .” Department of Economic and Social Affairs Population Division.gov/locations/asia/documents/Religion_AME_brief.org/fileadmin/resources/ research/PDFs/Combined_country_reviews. 42.pdf. 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W.687.edu/luce-sfs . and World Affairs 3307 M Street NW. Washington.687.Edmund A.georgetown. N.5696 http://sfs. DC 20057 202.edu The Luce/SFS Program on Religion and International Affairs http://berkleycenter. Suite 200 Washington. DC 20007 202. Peace. Walsh School of Foreign Service 301 Bunn InterCultural Center 37th & O Streets.georgetown.edu Berkley Center for Religion.5119 http://berkleycenter.georgetown.