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For Immediate Release

November 10, 2022

AVSI-USA Communications Manager, Angie Kilner
communications.avsiusa@avsi.org

A promise we renew: AVSI celebrates its 50th anniversary with an event in the United States

Washington D.C.

AVSI-USA will host a festive evening cocktail at the Embassy of Italy in Washington D.C. to celebrate half a century of preserving and upholding the dignity of local communities in 39 countries worldwide. 

Founded in 1972, AVSI started with the first project in Zaire – now the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Currently, AVSI operates in 39 countries with more than 200 projects, exceeding 2,100 staff, and reaching nearly 5 million beneficiaries in vulnerable situations in 2021. 

This year, AVSI celebrates its 50th anniversary by bringing together staff, donors, longtime supporters, and beneficiaries in various events and activities around the world. On November 10th, 2022, representatives from various US government agencies, non-governmental organizations, foundations, private corporations, UN agencies, and long-time AVSI friends and supporters will join AVSI-USA to celebrate the path taken and to look forward to the next 50 years and beyond, and the many ways AVSI’s “promise” can be renewed.   

Our program will draw on the past, present, and future of AVSI with a special attention to what AVSI-USA has accomplished since 2000 and their vision for the future. Welcoming greetings by the Ambassador of Italy to the United States, Mariangela Zappia, and opening remarks by the CEO elect of Global Partnership for Education, Laura Frigenti  will open the cocktail hour. The evening will be followed by videos, testimonies, awards, and speeches reflecting on AVSI’s work and projecting a vision for the future. The evening’s awards include: A Promise to the Future of Our Children, honoring Joyce Malombe, Program Director at Wellspring Philanthropic Fund; A Promise of Partnership, honoring Beverly Nyberg, Former US State Dept. Office of Global AIDS, the US President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR); and A Promise to Uplift the Most Vulnerable, honoring Sharon and Michael Mollerus, long-time AVSI friends. After more jovial conversation, champagne, and Italian sweets, we will conclude the evening with remarks by Jackie Aldrette, Deputy Secretary General of AVSI.   

This celebratory evening will display a different style of development, by incorporating the history of AVSI-USA in the larger history of AVSI, and taking a unique approach to development cooperation, part of the larger promise of AVSI. 

We want this fiftieth anniversary to be an opportunity to rediscover the value that defines usGiampaolo Silvestri, AVSI Secretary General, notes – and to enhance the specific contribution we can offer, by virtue of our history, to cooperation for development in the next fifty years. We want to be anti-cyclical: we want to keep our gaze up, to understand in advance new trends and new needs, so that we can be ready to always respond with new proposals and solutions. So that, paradoxically, one day we will no longer be needed”. 

“As we celebrate 50 of this AVSI adventure, and look ahead to the years to come, all of us at AVSI want to renew our promise to all our beneficiaries, like Emily, and the thousands of other children, young people and adults who have encountered, that we will do what it takes to remain close and committed, even if the form and the face of our accompaniment will change over time. The person at the center… this is our method, and a people for development… our motto, meaning can’t do this alone.” Jackie Aldrette, Deputy Secretary General of AVSI Foundation. 

Follow all the updates on: https://www.50.avsi.org/