General Secretary Birgitte Qvist-Sørensen elected as chair of ACT Alliance

General Secretary for DanChurchAid, Birgitte Qvist-Sørensen, has been entrusted with an international top position as chairperson of the 150 member organisations in the global network ACT Alliance.

”I am proud and humbled by the trust placed in me by the members of ACT Alliance. I am looking forward to taking charge of the important work done by the alliance in order to create a world where all people can live in peace, justice and dignity, and with respect for their human rights,” says Birgitte Qvist-Sørensen.

ACT Alliance (Action by Churches Together) is the world’s largest alliance of Protestant and Orthodox churches and faith-based organisations. The member organisations have a combined yearly budget of approximately €2.63 billion which is primarily used to fund development and humanitarian aid throughout the world. The 150 members of the alliance are working in 125 countries. In each country, ACT is striving to improve the life conditions of poor and marginalized people.

”I view ACT Alliance as a progressive voice to counteract conservative churches’ attitude to subjects like human rights, women’s rights and gay rights. Here, ACT Alliance performs an important role as a strong alliance fighting for human rights in a world that is quickly closing in on itself,” says Birgitte Qvist-Sørensen.

Birgitte Qvist-Sørensen has extensive leadership experience on the humanitarian area as well as conflict management and public administration. She aims to use that experience to strengthen the voice of ACT Alliance and ensure that the alliance will be able to accommodate both the similarities and the differences between the 150 member organisations.

“I will nurture a culture where we can openly discuss our different reference points in terms of development and humanitarian aid. On that basis, I will take part in strengthening the alliance’s shared goal of saving lives, fighting injustice and building sustainable local communities,” says Birgitte Qvist-Sørensen.

The member organisations of ACT Alliance are often anchored in local religious communities. The network thus contains local churches in some of the world’s most remote areas, enabling ACT Alliance to act rapidly when disaster strikes. That was demonstrated once again when an earthquake and a subsequent tsunami hit the Indonesian island Sulawesi in September. Here, ACT Alliance were already saving lives shortly after the disaster.

Facts on ACT Alliance

• ACT stands for for Action by Churches Together
• The 150 organisations behind ACT Alliance employ more than 25,000 people in total
• The alliance is working to improve life conditions for poor and marginalized people in 125 countries – regardless of religious beliefs, sex, political views, sexual orientation, race or nationality.
• The alliance was created January 1st, 2010.
• The alliance is supported by an international secretariat with around 20 employees based in Geneva.