Public Spirit and the Centre for the Study of Ethnicity and Citizenship are delighted to announce the launch of our new project on ‘Public Faith and Finance‘. Funded by the Barrow Cadbury Trust’s programme ‘Resources and Resilience’, the research focuses on the role of faith-based organisations in developing sustainable and ethical economic alternatives to market-based financial services and wellbeing.
In recent years, the landscape of religious organisations offering provisions has undergone a series of changes, with new players and charities increasingly providing innovative solutions to reducing personal debt and encouraging interest-free credit. In 2013, the Archbishop of Canterbury suggested that churches and other religious institutions could play a role in the provision of financial products, such as credit unions. Similarly, Muslim, Hindu, Jewish and Sikh organisations have also engaged in developing alternative financial products and local infrastructure for charitable giving and financial support.
Alternative financial programmes, such as the Muslim Pound, or community-run events including the Mitzva and Sewa days, specially dedicated to helping the most vulnerable members in society, are just a few examples of minority-faith communities and grassroots organisations seeking to address the challenges of financial hardship and exclusion.
In the coming months, we will explore the implications of faith-based financial services for the wider debates about the role of religion in public life.
To stay in touch with the project’s latest news and developments, please visit our News Blog.