The SOAR (Strengthening the security and resilience of at-risk religious sites and communities) project held a launch and networking event on the 7th of October, 2021, in Brussels. In attendance were various faith leaders, faith institution management, volunteers, law enforcement collaborators and EU representatives.
The SOAR project’s consortium partners- led by Enhancing Faith Institutions (EFI), Architects Council of Europe (ACE), Finn Church Aid (FCA) and the Network for Religious and Traditional Peacemakers- collectively delivered multiple presentations, highlighting key objectives and resources, throughout the event. They were joined by representatives from the European Commission and the United Nations Alliance of Civilizations (UNAOC), who also delivered presentations at the event.
SOAR builds upon the European Commission’s 2020 strategy on increasing the protection of public places, including places of worship. The project promotes interfaith collaboration and caters support to advance community safety and security capabilities via trainings for all faith communities alike. The SOAR consortium supports local faith communities and places of worship across seven pilot countries in Europe including France, Germany, Belgium, Austria, Hungary, Netherlands, and Denmark.
In order to effectively guide the project, SOAR is seeking religious actors and women and youth of faith to complete a survey regarding their own contexts to gather information about the security environment and gauge how to work with local communities and even improve the overall security of your own community. The valuable information shared will help develop training and awareness raising packages that can considerably increase the overall security of your community. Click here to learn more.
Below are some key moments from the SOAR Brussels launch event: