In keeping with the vision of Blessed Frédéric Ozanam to create a network of charity around the world, the National Council of the United States, Society of St. Vincent de Paul offers an International Twinning program, whereby one Conference or Council in the United States reaches out to help another Conference or Council in countries lacking resources to conduct their works of charity.
Although United States Vincentians have been actively Twinning with needy overseas Conferences and Councils since 1960, it was in 1979 that Twinning was declared an official fundamental activity of the Society, as the Council General in Paris requested that all nations establish Twinning Committees at all Council levels.
The plea to American Vincentians was that Twinning funds, whenever possible, be derived from the personal sacrifices in food and luxuries of the members and friends of the Society so that in a symbolic way, they may share the poverty of the poor and needy around the world.
Which countries are available for International Twinning?
Council General International (CGI) designates certain donor National Councils to be the Twin in specified countries because of the language, proximity, cultural and historical links and other appropriate reasons.
The United States has been named as the lead country for the Americas, which encompasses Central and South America, and the Caribbean.