The International Association of Charities, the oldest branch of the Vincentian Family, has renewed its website. You can visit it at http://www.aic-international.org/.
The new website is available in three languages: English, French and Spanish.
AIC strives to be a transforming presence of Christian inspiration in society, working mainly with women, through projects and development actions in which the beneficiaries are fully involved.
It also collaborates at local and global levels, participating in networks and getting involved in public policy or civil society programs, so that together we can build a fairer world.
It all started in Châtillon almost 400 years ago…
One Sunday in August 1617, during Mass, Saint Vincent called on his parishioners to help a sick family in great need. Many women responded that same afternoon, visiting the family and bringing them aid. Three days later, on 23rd August 1617, marvelling at such generosity, and feeling it necessary to organise this help to make it more effective and long-lasting, Saint Vincent led a first group of women to form a confraternity, with the aim of providing spiritual and material help to those most in need. 8th December 1617 is marked as the official starting date for this first group, which was called the Confraternity of Charity.
During his lifetime, Saint Vincent ensured the Charities spread across France and beyond, with the help of Saint Louise and a large number of volunteers.
Many things have happened since the sermon that inspired Saint Vincent to form the first group…
Today, we are called AIC – International Association of Charities – and we form an international network that continues to fight against poverty and its causes on four continents.
The beacon of Charity now has 53 national associations which bring together 150,000 Vincentian volunteers from all over the world. The tiny flame which Vincent and Louise once carried has now become this great beacon of Charity. We commit to carrying it onwards, ever burning, for new generations.