The Good Shepherd International Foundation (GSIF) is a not-for-profit organization based in Rome, Italy. Founded in 2008, the GSIF works with the Good Shepherd Sisters (GSS) to carry out their important ministries located throughout the world.
The GSS were founded in 1835 by St. Mary Euphrasia Pellettier in Angers, France. Today the Congregation has 3,000 members in 600 communities located in 73 countries throughout the world. The Congregation is recognized by the United Nations as a Nongovernmental Organization (NGO) in consultative status with ECOSOC because of its important work on behalf of women and children, especially those who live in poverty and are the victims of violence, abuse and discrimination.
The GSIF was created to meet the needs of the local communities in which the GSS operate and to support the management of their projects. The Foundation also works to create and oversee initiatives that:
- Eradicate poverty through sustainable economic development driven by women and that is respectful of human dignity and the environment;
- Provide comfort and justice to women and children who suffer because of violence and poverty;
- Erase the shame of human trafficking, a modern form of global slavery.
Through the work of the Mission Development Office (MDO) in Rome and in collaboration with the MDOs in Lebanon, Angola, Bolivia and India, the GSIF engages in fundraising, training, coordination and technical assistance. The projects the GSIF help to support in partnership with local Congregation are focused in the following keys areas:
- Protection and promotion of human rights for women and children (victims of violence, abuse, exploitation) in rural or poor urban areas;
- Vocational training in handicrafts, catering, agriculture and livestock for women and girls;
- Literacy, primary education and food security for children;
- Promotion of micro-entrepreneurship and social economy projects for women and girls;
- Protection of human trafficking victims and social reintegration;
- Assistance to migrants, refugees, victims of wars and natural disasters
To carry out their activities directly, the GSIF has a staff of experienced fundraisers, project managers and international consultants who help to promote the empowerment of local partners in the direct management of projects.