As a result of a consultation on 9-10 November in Washington, D.C., Pan African Women of Faith have released a Call to Action toward a vision of sustainable communities and an end to hunger and poverty.
The Call to Action presents an advocacy engagement strategy for the quad-centennial of the transatlantic slave trade from Angola to Jamestown in 1619.
“We understand we are at a Sankofa moment of Ubuntu (unity) which is a healing moment from our history and hope for our future,” reads the Call to Action.
Four key messages emerged from the consultation and are also conveyed in the Call to Action: “African at Heart”; the quad-centennial of the transatlantic slave trade; lifting Pan African women’s voices in unity in diversity; and advocacy for justice.
The Call to Action prioritizes listening to and working in solidarity with women affected by hunger and poverty. “We must engage gender and cultural diplomacy to enact change,” reads the call. “We carry authority in our gender, culture, and in simple acts of kindness.”
The call notes that justice work must be balanced and wrapped in prophetic discernment and self-care. “We need to cultivate the spiritual gift of listening to the voice of God heard and seen in our midst,” reads the call. “We embrace the leadership of young people who are contributing to this intergenerational movement, learning from them while serving as guides and advisors alongside them.”
The Call to Action resolves to build a local, national, continental and global campaign strategy that includes a 2019 education campaign that celebrates being “Africans at Heart” and African-descended people as part of the 6th Region of the African Union. The message also calls for a Pan African Women of Faith Summit in 2019.
“This movement is committed to engagement among ourselves, faith communities and government leaders,” the Call to Action reads. “We assert our inherent rights as Africans and invite our governments, leaders, other stakeholders and institutions to join us in pursuing the Future We Want to leave our future generations.”
About the consultation
The third annual Pan African Women of Faith Global Strategy Consultation drew more than 50 participants from across the globe. The represented civil society, government, private sector, younger and older women, media organizations and faith-based groups. The event was held at the African Union Mission to the United States. The co-hosts were Bread for the World, the Pan-African Diaspora Women’s Association (PADWA)-African Union, and the Pan-African Women Ecumenical Empowerment Network (PAWEEN)-World Council of Churches.
The consultation deepened the prayerful engagement of solidarity, advocacy, and coalition-building towards a vision of sustainable communities with an end to hunger and poverty by and with Pan African women.
Globally, Pan African women are disproportionately affected by hunger, poverty, conflict, Afrophobia, and racism.