Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA) Global Mission Unit

Commitment 1: Promote Child Protection

Offer Support for:

  • Contributing to ending violence against children and adolescents in society at large
  • Supporting child protection in emergencies
  • Advocating for birth registration
Commitment 2: Promote Child Participation

Offer Support for:

  • In church activities and worship
  • In society at large
Commitment 3: Raise Church Voices For Intergenerational Climate Justice

Offer Support for:

  • Promote eco-responsibility within the church
  • Promote eco-responsibility in society at large

Additional information: 

Through World Hunger and Lutheran Disaster Response grants, the ELCA supports the development and relief work that our companions have identified as important for their communities and appropriate for their contexts. Many of these projects, implemented by companion churches, intersect with the World Council of Churches – Churches’ Commitments to Children initiative in the following areas:

1. Contributing to ending violence against children and adolescents in society at large

a. This work often, but not always, has a gender component, with an emphasize on reducing sexually based violence through safe spaces and emotional support for those who have experienced violence, and campaigns advocating for all to stand against violence. In addition, many of the projects reflect the philosophy that by providing children and adolescents with things like education, health education, vocational training, and positive mental health, you are protecting them from potential violence, abuse, and exploitation.

b. Ex. Thailand – New Life Center Human Trafficking

c. Supporting child protection in emergencies a. Children are often the most vulnerable in emergency situations, therefore it is important to ensure efforts are made to support them. When there are disasters, many of the projects implemented focus on the children and look not only at immediate relief but long-term rebuilding. This work often includes efforts to get the children back to their education quickly, working with the caregivers so that children are receiving nutritious food and safe water, and when possible psychosocial counseling. b. Ex. Liberia LCL Orphans and Youth Affected by Ebola

d. Advocating for birth registration

We support several projects in the South and Eastern Africa region that work with orphans and vulnerable children affected by HIV and AIDS and their caregivers. A common activity within some of these projects is to assist caregivers in accessing birth certificates or registering the birth of a child if it has not already happened. In South Africa, it has been particularly difficult to register these children with new requirements passed and the lack of birth registration can cause legal problems and a lack of access to resources in the present and future. b. Ex. ELCSA ED HIV/AIDS Prevention

2. Promoting meaningful participation by children and adolescents in society at large

a. The projects the ELCA supports promote meaningful participation by children and adolescents through some form of education whether formal or vocational. Institutions work with children of different ages from preschoolers to adolescents. There are projects that teach livelihood and/or life skills that often have the additional impact of forming social support groups and positive self-esteem. A project in Malawi even has youth learning how to provide pre-primary school learning and care to children ages 3-5 and they then volunteer their time to the community run project. Furthermore, adolescent health care projects encourage adolescents to participate in their own health choices.

b. Ex. Romania EPD Day Care Open House