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AVSI-USA History and 2011 Annual Report
AVSI – The Association of Volunteers in International Service is an international not-for-profit, non-governmental organization (NGO) founded in Italy in 1972. AVSI’s mission is to support human development in developing countries with special attention to education and the promotion of the dignity of every human person, according to Catholic social teaching.
AVSI-USA opened its doors in 2001, first in New York City and subsequently in Washington, D.C., in response to the need for a presence in the U.S. AVSI-USA is an autonomous entity registered in the State of New York with 501(c) 3 status. As such, AVSI-USA shares the mission and method of the AVSI network and provides support to members and initiatives by leveraging resources for existing and new projects, sharing lessons and experiences of the AVSI network and method among development practitioners, supporting collaborations with U.S. organizations and donors, and representing AVSI at the United Nations and with other international organizations.
AVSI carries out its mission through the planning and implementation of medium and long-term sustainable projects and emergency relief operations in partnership with local associations, institutions, governments, and international agencies. Presently,the global AVSI Network links together over 60 organizations, most of which are local institutions in non-western countries.
The AVSI network is a platform which allows for permanent relationships of support and mutual exchange among member organizations. This support takes the form of dialogue on policy and programming; joint collaboration for planning and implementing targeted initiatives; technical assistance; access to financial resources; regional or global meetings and trainings; site visits and exchanges; and opportunities for linkages with local, regional and international actors in government, business and civil society.
At present, AVSI is operating in 38 countries of Africa, Latin America, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and Asia with over 130 long term projects and relief operations directly benefiting around 4,000,000 people in various sectors. Highly qualified AVSI personnel are directly involved in long-term field assignments together with hundreds of locally hired people and supported by dozens of academics and senior practitioners.
Financial support is secured through numerous grants and donations of private individuals, associations, and businesses who thereby practice and invest in global solidarity. These funds complement those of international and national development organizations, UN agencies and the European Union.
AVSI is registered as a PVO with USAID and holds General Consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) in New York, UN Children's Fund (UNICEF), an accredited participant of the UN Global Compact and is recognized on the NGO Special List of the International Labor Organization (ILO). AVSI is also recognized as an NGO for international cooperation by the Italian Government and the European Union.
AVSI’s financial statements are certified by one of the leading global accounting firms.