In 1993, 20 years ago, Czech Caritas launched its international aid activities. Caritas or the Archdiocese of Prague started the Child Sponsorship Programme in India and Caritas Czech Republic dispatched its first convoy of humanitarian aid to Bosnia and Herzegovina. Today, both these Caritas organizations rank among the biggest foreign aid providers in our country. In the course of the years, other diocesan Caritas joined in.
At present, Caritas provides help in more than 25 countries worldwide. It is active in education, health care and agriculture. “We got the prize mainly due to our foreign activities, yet we consider it as an appreciation for the Caritas Czech Republic work as a whole. Our experience from social services, e.g. home care, provided here is often passed abroad. And also vice versa – experience from countries stricken by natural disasters is now being used during the floods in our country,“ says Lukáš Curylo, director of Caritas Czech Republic.
When operating abroad, Caritas puts emphasis on close cooperation with local communities. This is supported by the fact that Caritas is a member of the confederation of 165 national Roman Catholic Caritas associated in Caritas Internationalis and can rely on cooperation with local partners in target destinations. “Since its founding, Caritas Czech Republic has earned an excellent reputation internationally, not only with regard to the content of their work, but also with regard to the professionalism and commitment that they dedicate to their projects,“ writes the ministry in its list of laureates.