The Forum for Development, Culture and Dialogue (FDCD) dates from the Urban Rural Mission programme (URM) developed for the Middle East by the World Council of Churches to help poor and marginalised communities through harmonisation work between Muslims and Christians.
It was founded in 2004 to respond to the needs of poor and marginalized people in the Middle East. In the years since it was founded, as a people’s movement, FDCD has achieved a great deal in community development, training new leaders, and establishing bridges of understanding both within our region and between the Middle East and western countries.
The FDCD encourages dialogue, and in particular aims to strengthen the role of young people and women as partners in these exchanges. Its approach is faith-based, and uses cultural diversity as a tool that can help avoid clashes and stimulate progress in communities. Throughout, the FDCD emphasises empowerment and solidarity with people in need, and always approaches justice and peace through dialogue and cooperation. It believes in the role of media supporting peacebuilding and dialogue.
FDCD cooperates with related organisations throughout Lebanon as well as in the region, including supporting the Lebanese army in face of terrorism, in a series of activities such as cycling for peace from North to South. It is dedicated to peacebuilding in several programs, including arts and sports. It is also open for volunteers that is beneficiary for the targeted groups, the organization and the volunteers who learn in turn more about others and themselves while they serve them.
In short, FDCD works on Empowerment and Solidarity with marginalized sectors to promote respect for human dignity particularly with women and youth; and Justice with Peacebuilding in supporting interfaith action via continuous dialogues and non violent communication for a peaceful transformation of conflict.
And in response to the growing presence of religious fundamentalism and the spread of ISIS in the Middle East, FDCD has hosted several lectures and seminars on the importance of dialogue between religions to counter terrorism and violent extremism. An example is the international work and study camp entitled "Dialogue and Religious Diversity Facing Extremism", as FDCD believes the religious diversity of this region can be a model for peaceful co-existence in the world.