P.O. BOX 154
Tel.: + 358-9-12-971
tel. + 358 9 1297 333
Based on our Christian values, Finish Evangelical Lutheran Mission (FELM) has been bearing responsibility for human well-being throughout its existence. Since 1859, our work has included provision of various services, such as health care and education. Today, this is referred to as development cooperation. Finnish society has had confidence in FELM and the work we do for 150 years. As evidence of continued faith in FELM and our work for human dignity now and in the future, we receive contributions from both private citizens and the Finnish government.
FELM is one of the largest partner organizations working together with the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland. We are widely supported by the Finnish people. Grassroots activism is flourishing in congregations and connects people. FELM brings together ordinary people from the North and the South.
- Christian hope
- Neighborly love
- Protection of human rights
Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Mission in the Palestinian Territories
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has continued for several generations and complicates people’s lives in various ways. The Israeli West Bank barrier limits people’s freedom of movement preventing, for instance, Palestinians from traveling to work in Israel. Unemployment is a major problem in the Palestinian areas, which intensifies the already existing poverty.
The Middle East’s only Lutheran church is in the Palestinian territories. The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land has around 2,000 members. Of the six congregations, one is in the Jordanian capital Amman and the other five are in the West Bank and Jerusalem.
FELM supports the diaconal work of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land (ELCJH). Church schools provide high quality education for local children, while one of the focuses of diaconal work is on caring for the elderly. In Ramallah there is a home care service for the elderly, which is run in collaboration with the Al Atta organization. Through the service needy elderly people are provided with meals, help looking after their homes and health care.
FELM supports the activities of the Martin Luther Centre in Jerusalem. The centre provides a varied programme of activities for the elderly. FELM workers carry out diaconal work and work as contact persons for FELM’s sponsorship programme.
FELM has supported the Augusta Victoria hospital and Lutheran World Federation’s vocational training program with development funding.
FELM has supported the development of ELCJH’s school network for a number of years. FELM development cooperation funds have helped finance the renovation and expansion of the Dar Al Kalima School in Bethlehem. FELM also supports an art and employment project for women in Bethlehem. The project trains women over a three year period in producing and selling their own art work.
Child sponsorship funds are used to support the education of children at the ELCJH’s schools in Jordan, Ramallah (Hope School), Bethlehem (Dar al Kalima School) and Beit Sahour. Sponsorship funds are used to support disadvantaged local children from both the Christian and Muslim communities. Over 200 children are sponsored, with support being given chiefly to groups of children rather than individuals.
The Beit Sahour School focuses on art and vocational teaching, with a particular emphasis on practical subjects and creative teaching in workshops. Young people learn traditional handicrafts and, at the same time, learn to value their identity, their traditions and their community. All the schools provide quality education that emphasizes, among others, art subjects, peace studies and environmental education. Children receive religious teaching according to their own religion. Both boys and girls are taught at the schools.
- Israel: Ebenezer seniors’ home in Haifa, Immanuel Church in Jaffa, Caspari Centre in Jerusalem, Thai-Israel-Finland Frienship Club, Machaseh, Makor Hatikva school, Gospel Riders.
- Occupied Palestinian Territory (West Bank, East Jerusalem), Jordan:The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jordan and the Holy Land , ACT Palestine Forum
Advocacy is an essential component of both FELM’s church work and development cooperation work.
FELM’s advocacy work aims to address the structures that create poverty and prevent people from being able to realize their human rights. These structures include: discrimination based on gender, ethnicity or religion; lack of opportunities to affect democratic processes; unjust and discriminatory legislation; and social injustice.
The goal of our advocacy work is to bring about changes in attitudes, practices and decision-making processes that lead to improvements in the lives of the weak and marginalized. Our advocacy work operates on three levels:
- Developing countries: Advocacy work in developing countries consists of supporting the advocacy activities and priorities of our partner organizations and churches on the ground. It is they who are best able to assess the advocacy needs of their own communities and societies and take appropriate action.
- Internationally: FELM’s international advocacy work is mostly carried out with and through the various international ecumenical organizations to which it belongs. These organizations include the ACT Alliance, the Ecumenical Advocacy Alliance, the Lutheran World Federation, and the World Council of Churches. FELM supports the participation of our partner organizations in these networks and also supports them in raising issues that are of concern to them.
- In Finland we participate in dialogue with church and political decision-makers, carry out awareness-raising work concerning pressing global issues and invite people to help bring about change through campaigns and different types of stunts. FELM’s main campaign is the Equal Share campaign, which has been running, with various campaign themes, for a number of years. FELM carries out advocacy work both alone and in collaboration with other actors such as churches and other NGOs.
FELM’s advocacy work focuses on five themes, which are: human rights, especially of marginalized groups; food security; HIV and AIDS; peace and reconciliation; and faith and development.
Read more about FELM’s advocacy themes
How Can I Help?
• Support our work by donating.