The Moral Imperative to End Extreme Poverty

Internally Displaced People Camp, Kakuma, Kenya

The Moral Imperative to End Extreme Poverty (or simply, The Moral Imperative) is a call issued by the World Bank in April 2015 to all faith leaders.  Citing evidence that it is within our ability as a society to end extreme poverty, the World Bank said that the commitment to in fact end extreme poverty was a moral and spiritual challenge, not a technical challenge (See Press Release).  As such, ending extreme poverty was a goal that the World Bank and all religions have in common.

Work on the Moral Imperative emphasizes three commitments:

  1. The commitment to generate and be guided by evidence.
  2. The commitment to advocate by engaging the moral authority of religious leaders and their substantial constituencies.
  3. The commitment to foster more effective collaboration between religious and other development actors, including governments, the World Bank Group, the United Nations, and the private sector.

WEA currently participates on the advocacy working group as well as serving as the conduit between the World Bank and the member alliances.  Within advocacy there are two areas of emphasis for advocacy: child development and water and land rights.

The current strategy discussion focuses on the possibility of piloting methods of ending extreme poverty in three countries: Senegal, Nigeria and Indonesia.  WEA is planning to work with World Bank to engage the alliances in each of the pilot countries to work together to end extreme poverty. As this pilot develops WEA will update this site with guidance and resources for those interested in following this effort or possible applying its lessons.

Resources

World Bank Moral Imperative Blog

World Council of Churches

JLI Guide to Evidence for Faith Groups (Why should faith groups care about evidence?)