13th September - Calls for world leaders to increase access to finance and markets for poor people came at the end of the Anglican Alliance workshop in Nairobi.
Opened by the Archbishops of Kenya and Central Africa, and with keynote speeches from African bankers and academics, the workshop brought together Anglicans from across Asia, Africa and Latin America. It put forward a package of proposals for advocacy and development to provide community-owned financial services backed by training in financial literacy.
And with attention focused on people working in small-scale farming, the workshop also set out priorities for action on World Food Day on October 16th. The Economic Empowerment Outputs document can be found here.
It was backed by detailed commitments from individual participants for action when they returned home, ranging from building partnerships with local banks, training clergy in building financial literacy in their communities, and working on the theology of economic empowerment.
Archbishops Eliud Wabukala of the Anglican Church of Kenya opened the workshop which also heard from the Most Revd Albert Chama of the Province of Central Africa, Dr James Mwangi, Chief Executive Officer of Equity Bank, Africa’s leading micro-finance provider, and Prof Elishiba Kimani of Kenyatta University who set out how poverty impacted most heavily on women.
Fulfilling a mandate from regional consultations held in Africa, Asia, the Pacific and Latin America last year, the measures agreed by participants included:
Participants also committed to individual actions when they returned home.
Over four days the workshop looked at different models of financial services, and the experience of practitioners in different parts of the Communion. They heard from Canon Grace Kaiso, secretary general of the Council of Anglican Provinces of Africa, Mr Charles Abugre, Africa Director of the United Nations Millennium Campaign Office, Ruth Stewart, a University of London micro-finance research academic, and Mrs Anne Mbaabu, of the Alliance for Green Revolution in Africa. Participants also visited a women’s bank set up by the Mother’s Union in Kiambu, a town on the outskirts of Nairobi.
Papers from the workshop will be posted on this website.
Participants at the workshop came from the dioceses of Honduras and Colombia and the churches of Philippines, Bangladesh, Brazil, UK, West Africa, Uganda, Tanzania, Kenya, Rwanda and from partner organisations Five Talents Uganda and Kenya, Lambeth Trust, Hope Africa, and the Anglican Board of Mission in Australia. The Primates World Relief and Development Fund sent two participants involved in micro-finance in Mozambique and the Mothers Union sent participants from Burundi and Malawi.