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Caritas and Development


Today, more than a billion people still live below the poverty line. Caritas works alongside them – in countries both rich and poor – to end their suffering and to help them reach their full potential. Extreme poverty can only be ended if income and opportunity are more equal and human rights are fully promoted.

Through its development work, Caritas seeks to build a world in which we all live in dignity and peace and can provide for ourselves. It focuses on the causes and effects of poverty, helping communities become more involved in the political process and more powerful. Caritas helps them grow more resilient in the face of climate change, financial crises and economic exploitation.

Caritas believes development assistance works and urges all governments to meet the international target of 0.7% of their gross domestic product to be spent on international aid.

Caritas is guided by the teaching of the Catholic Church, which insists that everyone must have the means to contribute and participate. Caritas’ vision is to change not only the systems we live in but also to change ourselves to fully understand love and sharing.

“Poverty in the world is a scandal. In a world where there is so much wealth, so many resources to feed everyone, it is unfathomable that there are so many hungry children, that there are so many children without an education, so many poor persons. Poverty today is a cry.”
Pope Francis

Caritas Updates on Development

  • Food, war and Caritas at EXPO 2015

Food, war and Caritas at EXPO 2015

  • 29 September 2015
Caritas wants you to think about food: where it comes from, how to make sure everyone’s got enough and of the right quality, its ability to bring us together and its essential role everyone’s lives.
  • How Pope Francis touched us with his words to the United Nations

How Pope Francis touched us with his words to the United Nations

  • 29 September 2015
Pope Francis throws open a challenge to leaders of states and governments to go beyond making the UN a mere chatter house and to not fall into ‘a declarational nominalism’, where the fashion is to always make declarations ‘without teeth’.
Our key areas in Development
How Caritas works in Development

Caritas works towards the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals, using them as its orientation to bring positive change. It is pressing for a new commitment when the MDGs end. Caritas holds both extractive industries and national governments to account, pressing for fair and responsible policies and actions. It campaigns at high level meetings and events worldwide to bring economic justice to the poor. Read more about these programmes



Resources on family and poverty


Caritas MDG 2015