| Lorenz Werthmann|
| Vatican City|
| 9 November 1897
(119 years ago)|
Humanitarian aid, International development and social service
Luis Antonio Tagle, president
Caritas Internationalis is a confederation of 165 Catholic relief, development and social service organisations operating in over 200 countries and territories worldwide.
Collectively and individually their claimed mission is to work to build a better world, especially for the poor and oppressed. The first Caritas organisation was established by Lorenz Werthmann on 9 November 1897 in Germany. Other national Caritas organisations were soon formed in Switzerland (1901) and the United States (Catholic Charities, 1910).
Caritas Internationalis Wikipedia
In July 1924, during the international Eucharistic Congress in Amsterdam, 60 delegates from 22 countries formed a conference, with headquarters at Caritas Switzerland in Lucerne. In 1928, the conference became known as Caritas Catholica. The delegates met every two years until the outbreak of the Second World War when all activities came to a standstill. Work resumed in 1947, with the approval of the Secretariat of State, and two conferences convened in Lucerne to help coordinate efforts and collaboration. Caritas was given a further endorsement when the Secretariat of State entrusted it with the official representation of all welfare organisations at the international level, especially at the United Nations. The Holy Year in 1950 saw the beginning of a union of Caritas organisations. Following a suggestion by Msgr Montini, then Substitute Secretary of State, and later Pope Paul VI, a study week, with participants from 22 countries, was held in Rome to examine the problems of Christian Caritas work. As a result, the decision was made to set up an international conference of Roman Catholic charities.
In December 1951, upon approval of the statutes by the Holy See, the first constitutive General Assembly of Caritas Internationalis took place. Founding members came from Caritas organisations in 13 countries: Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Netherlands, Italy, Luxembourg, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, and the United States. The Church describes Caritas as its official voice “in relation to its teachings in the area of charity work”.
In 1954, the Confederation changed its name to Caritas Internationalis to reflect the international presence of Caritas members on every continent. As of 2015, the Confederation has 164 members working in over 200 countries and territories. Its General Secretariat is located in the Palazzo San Calisto, Vatican City. The current president is Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle and the Secretary General is Michel Roy.
The full membership list of Caritas organisations includes:
45 national agencies in Sub-Saharan AfricaChad – SECADEV (Caritas Chad) has partnered with the Canadian bishops' Development and Peace program to provide essential aid for Sudanese refugees in Chad, including access to water, financing for small businesses and agricultural projects.
Egypt (part of MENA regional agency)
Kenya – Caritas Nairobi- operated by the Archdiocese of Nairobi
Nigeria – Caritas Nigeria claims to work with local diocesan Caritas to bring relief to displaced families in the North East region displaced because of attacks by Boko Haram.
Uganda – Caritas Uganda (founded in 1970)
24 national agencies including:Bangladesh - Caritas Bangladesh
Cambodia – Caritas Cambodia
Hong Kong – Caritas Hong Kong operated by the Catholic Diocese of Hong Kong
Indonesia – Caritas Indonesia – KARINA
Caritas Bandung – operated by the Diocese of Bandung
Cordia Caritas Medan – operated by Archdiocese of Medan
Caritas Keuskupan Sibolga – operated by Roman Catholic Diocese of Sibolga
Caritas Keuskupan Agung Semarang – Karina KAS – operated by Archdiocese of Semarang
Caritas Tanjungkarang – operated by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Tanjungkarang
India - Caritas India claimed in its Decennial Report that the organization invested US$75 million on 14 major emergencies across the country during 2014-2015 period.
Japan – Caritas Japan
Korea – Caritas Korea
Macau – Caritas de Macau – established the Family Casework & Assistance Service, Our Lady of Mt. Carmel Home for the Elderly, St. Luis Gonzaga Center for the Disabled and Institute of Social Work, the first Institute in Macau offering training for social workers.
Philippines – Caritas Manila claims a focus on Education, Health, and Disaster Risk Reduction and Management as flagship programs.
Singapore – Caritas Singapore
Vietnam – Caritas Việt Nam (26 members of the diocesan)
MENA regional agency Caritas MONA] with 17 national agencies including:
Jordan – Caritas Jordan has taken part in efforts to support displaced Syrians since December 2011 and is still active in addressing the needs of refugees.
Lebanon – Caritas Lebanon works through different centers throughout the country, delivering food parcels, hygiene kits and blankets to refugee families from war-torn Syria. There is also medical assistance through mobile clinics and health centers.
Caritas Europa with 48 national agencies including:Armenia- Armenian Caritas
Austria – Caritas Osterreich
Belgium – Caritas Catholica Belgica
Bosnia and Herzegovina – Caritas Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bulgaria – Caritas Bulgaria
Croatia – Caritas Republic of Croatia
Czech Republic – Charita Česká republika
Denmark – Caritas Danmark
England and Wales – where there are two Caritas agencies: CAFOD and Caritas – Social Action
Finland – Suomen Caritas ry
France – where the Caritas agency is Secours catholique
Germany – Caritas Deutschland
Greece - Κάριτας Ελλάς
Hungary – Katolikus Karitász
Ireland – where the Caritas agency is Trócaire
Italy – Caritas Italiana
Lithuania – Caritas Lithuania
Luxembourg – Caritas Luxembourg
Malta – Caritas Malta
Moldova – Caritas Moldova
Netherlands – where the Caritas agency is CORDAID
Norway – Caritas Norge
Poland – Caritas Polska
Portugal – Caritas Portugal – Caritas Portuguesa
Romania – Confederația Caritas România
Russia – Caritas in the European Part of Russia
Scotland – where the Caritas agency is SCIAF
Serbia – Caritas Republic of Serbia
Slovakia – Slovenská katolícka charita
Slovenia – Slovenska Karitas
Spain – Cáritas Española
Sweden – Caritas Sverige
Switzerland – Caritas Switzerland
Ukraine - Карітас України (Caritas Ukraine) claims to focus its activities in the sphere of health care – including home care and palliative care; assistance to children and youth, in activities related to migrant processes, and assistance to individuals in crisis situations.
Canada – Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace (Caritas Canada)
Cuba – Caritas Cuba
El Salvador – Caritas El Salvador
Guatemala – Caritas Guatemala
Mexico – Caritas Mexico
United States – Catholic Relief Services, Catholic Charities USA, Caritas USA, formerly Caritas Christi Health Care
6 regional agencies, including:Australia – Caritas Australia claims involvement in peacebuilding and reconciliation programs in Brazil, Sri Lanka, The Philippines, Papua New Guinea and elsewhere.
New Zealand – Caritas Aotearoa New Zealand
Papua New Guinea – Caritas PNG
Caritas Samoa claims to give assistance to low income families, provides capacity-building initiatives for women, help with the improvement of rural waters supplies, and provides assistance to address needs caused by natural disasters.
Argentina – Caritas Argentina
Bolivia – Caritas de Bolivia
Brasil – Caritas Brasil
Chile – Caritas de Chile
Ecuador Caritas de Ecuador
Perú – Cáritas Perú
Uruguay – Caritas Uruguay
Venezuela – Caritas de Venezuela