Why are faith leaders so important in the prevention of COVID-19?

A key partnership for today and tomorrow's children

UNICEF Tanzania
08 April 2020

With many religious holidays around the corner, families and communities are turning to their faith. To support children worldwide in this important right, Religions for Peace (RfP) and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), joined forces on April 7 to launch a global Multi-Religious Faith-in-Action Covid-19 Initiative to raise awareness of the impacts of this pandemic on the world’s youngest citizens. 

The Initiative reflects the unique and critical roles played by religious leaders and actor, in influencing values, attitudes, behaviours and actions that affect the development and wellbeing of the world’s children. The  Initiative  will be coordinated by the global partnership on Faith and Positive Change for Children, Families and Communities , which involves Religions for Peace’s Interreligious Councils, including senior leaders of the world’s religious and spiritual traditions.  

This global partnership now commits to strengthening multi-religious action and community mobilization, in countering the COVID-19 pandemic. The global Multi-Religious Faith-in-Action Covid-19 Initiative calls upon all communities across the world, together with governments, UN entities, and broad civil society organisations.See more about the Global Partnership between Religions for Peace (RfP) and UNICEF here.

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In Tanzania, UNICEF is working together with religious leaders to:


...Heightened focus on hygiene and sanitation in keeping with religious teachings and sacred texts that emphasize cleanliness as an element of holiness.


...All forms of stigma and discrimination associated with transmission of the disease with active promotion of attitudes and behaviours to uphold the dignity and rights of all people.


...Active engagement of networks of religious communities including faith-based women, and youth.

...Spiritual and emotional care and support for parents, children, the elderly and distress in order to provide a source of support, peace, comfort and hope.UNIC stand united in this global Inter-faith moment of hope and solidarity for the survival, protection and development of our children, families and communities.                                                  

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Take a look at these videos to see how some of Tanzania's religious leaders are taking a leading role in the prevention of COVID-19 (only available in Kiswahili)

UNICEF Tanzania
UNICEF Tanzania
UNICEF Tanzania