The Forum for Development, Culture, and Dialogue (FDCD) represents a faith-based, integrated initiative rising from the community and aiming to restore dignity to marginalized, oppressed, and dehumanized individuals and communities. We strive to support communities of faith, both Muslim and Christian, to work alongside civil society organizations to address the challenges that face their communities, individually and collectively. This is done through a process of dialogue, interfaith solidarity and cooperation among communities in the Middle East. Through this sense of solidarity, and through intervention in specific locales, the FDCD works to activate the role that religious communities—Muslim and Christian—can play as they strive for cultural, social, and economic empowerment of marginalized communities and the promotion of sustainable development; advocate for and encourage the peaceful transformation of conflict at multiple levels in society as a means of building peace through justice and reconciliation; and promote inter-communal understanding and cooperation by strengthening the role of women and youth in inter-cultural dialogue.
The FDCD has expanded its service in Lebanon to provide medical aid and public health trainings to Syrian refugees. The refugee population in Lebanon has grown to two million people, which is equal to half of the Lebanese population. The distressed living conditions for Syrian refugees are exasperated further by the country’s existing shortages in electricity and water. While assessing the circumstances, the FDCD recognized the growing need for the promotion and advancement of public health awareness among the refugee population in Lebanon. The FDCD is promoting basic public health concepts and practices in an effort to mitigate the health risks associated with living in overpopulated camps and settlements. The FDCD is providing trainings to the refugee population at large, and also more targeted trainings for women and children on hygiene, preventing the spread of diseases, and food safety practices. In addition to the trainings, the FDCD is also providing necessary medication to refugees with chronic illnesses. The FDCD is working to improve public health within refugee communities and within the country as a whole, in order to mitigate the health and economic burdens associated with public health crises.
International Work and Study Camp
The FDCD and the Arab Group for Christian-Muslim Dialogue offer a week-long International Work and Study Camp. The camp is based on the idea that young people are the future and peaceful coexistence can begin with the them. Young adults today, particularly in the Middle East, have very few safe spaces and opportunities in which they can come together in an honest and free manner to discuss sensitive issues they hold dear and to learn how to coexist with others peacefully. Every summer, young adults from various different countries, religions, and backgrounds, live together for a week to participate in dialogue, workshops, lectures, manual work, field visits to practitioners, and more.