A New Era of Partnerships: Advisory Council on Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships Presents Final Report of Recommendations
This week, the President’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships presented its final report of recommendations to senior Administration officials at a day-long briefing at the White House.
This first-of-its-kind White House advisory group made up of diverse religious and community non-profit leaders was appointed by the President last spring to develop recommendations on how the government can better partner with faith and neighborhood based organizations. The Council represented leaders from across religious, political and ideological lines, who came together in a spirit of civility and respect to address some of the most pressing issues facing government and nonprofits. They deliberated over months of proceedings and dozens of conference calls and developed more than 60 consensus recommendations.
The Council’s recommendations included:
- Providing greater clarity on guidelines for how religious charities receive and utilize government funds to provide social services;
- Encouraging government to work with faith and community-based groups to streamline access to benefits for the unemployed and the most vulnerable;
- Promoting strategic partnerships between Fortune 500 companies, community organizations, domestic violence groups, veterans and those in the Fatherhood field to promote responsible father engagement in the lives of children; and
- Bringing the power of 370,000 houses of worship across the country to the fight of climate change by greening buildings and promoting environmental stewardship in their congregations.
The Council presented these recommendations to a powerhouse line up of Administration officials, including Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Kathleen Sebelius, EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, Melody Barnes, Director of the Domestic Policy Council, Denis McDonough, Chief of Staff of the National Security Staff and Dr. Raj Shah, Administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development. Council members then had a warm greeting with President Obama to receive his thanks and gratitude for their work.
We note with pride the respect and civility Council and Taskforce members have shown one another throughout this process. The White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships will be working with Administration officials to assess the recommendations, and we encourage you to review the entire Council report (pdf).
Mara Vanderslice is the Deputy Director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships and the Coordinator of the President’s Advisory Council
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