Faith and impartiality in humanitarian response: Lessons from Lebanese evangelical churches providing food aid

This case study of a network of evangelical churches in Lebanon, based on data collected during an evaluation in 2014, presents a critique of common understandings about the humanitarian principle of impartiality, and questions assumptions about the compatibility between religious fervour and humanitarian values. Churches attempting to respect impartiality while implementing a food aid project for Syrian refugees have sought to mitigate potential problems through relationship-building and promotion of human dignity in order to ensure needsresponsiveness. Though many Lebanese Evangelical Christians do continue to engage in evangelistic activity, they benefit from strong community ties and demonstrate a high level of sensitivity to their beneficiaries’ urgent needs as well as their sense of dignity.