The IGC’s roles

The 153 member countries of the Society of Saint Vincent de Paul’s International Confederation are each represented by a National/Superior Council. These councils vote on the main resolutions concerning the life of the SSVP and elect a President-General every 6 years. The President-General forms an International Board and appoints international representatives to assist in his/her mission.

This group of representatives forms the International General Council (IGC), which is the Society’s highest international authority.

The General Council is the link between member countries of the SSVP’s International Confederation. It has many missions:


The General Council represents the SSVP to various bodies such as the Holy See, and religious, civil and international agencies/organizations. For example, the United Nations in New York and Geneva, and the International Catholic Centre for Cooperation with UNESCO, in Paris.


The General Council focuses its communication according to various audiences:

  • Countries and member volunteers (website, newsletter, international gatherings and meetings)
  • The general public (via action such as Frédéric Ozanam’s canonization, Vincentian Youth meetings, etc.)


The General Council organizes Vincentian solidarity via:

  • Twinnings
  • Financial aid after natural and humanitarian catastrophes
  • Management of specific projects (development/rehabilitation)

It also supports the work of Councils and Conferences by collecting data for statistical purposes, developing information sources and its knowledge of different countries.


The General Council ensures the International Rule is followed, especially with regard to:

  • Aggregations and institutions, elections of presidents, member countries’ internal statutes
  • Training
  • Resolving disputes


(Portraits: PG/Vice-PG/Secretary-Gen./Treasurer-Gen.)

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