ARLINGTON, VA (January 27, 2015)– With the
launch of #50FORWARD today, Counterpart International kicks off a year-long celebration of 50 years of leadership in international development.
For the past five decades, Counterpart has helped people build better lives and more durable futures, community by community.

“On January 27, 1965 an unlikely pair of visionaries – Betty Silverstein, Australia’s top film actress, and Father Stan Hosie, a Marist priest – joined forces to start the Foundations for the Peoples of the South Pacific (FSP). They both believed that local people needed to drive their own destinies and that by working on equal footing within these communities, broad and lasting improvements in people’s lives were possible,”  said Joan Parker, President and CEO of Counterpart International. “They would be thrilled to see that 50 years later, we are still achieving results based on this same philosophy,” Parker added.

“For 50 years, Counterpart has been an innovator, changing the way people look at and solve development problems,” said Deborah Nolan, Chair of Counterpart’s Board of Directors and retired Partner at EY. “The theme of 50FORWARD signals Counterpart’s momentum and energy as it expands its work to more countries around the world. By training emerging leaders and local organizations to drive inclusiveness and accelerate partnerships with the social sector, they can deliver community-based solutions that are sustainable, scalable and transferable. Counterpart is poised to continue its work in partnerships, leveraging its history of innovation and transformation, to help deliver lasting impacts and a stronger future,” added Nolan.

In 1992, FSP was challenged to “go global” by the U.S. Agency for International Development and with that challenge became one of the first nonprofit organizations to work in the former Soviet Union. The organization changed its name to Counterpart International and since then, has worked in more than 65 countries worldwide. In 2014 alone, Counterpart trained 150,000 emerging leaders and worked with more than 3,500 local organizations in 22 countries.

Among the many activities planned for the year, is the celebration of #50FORWARDHeroes, to honor local leaders and innovators who created social change in their own communities, against all odds. “We want to acknowledge the courage and determination of the individuals we partner with and are inspired by,” noted Parker.

For more information about #50FORWARD please visit,

Counterpart International helps people build better lives and more durable futures, community by community. For 50 years, Counterpart has been an innovator, changing the way people look at, and solve, global development challenges. Today, we are working with more than 3,500 local organizations, and more than 150,000 leaders — including women and youth — in 24 countries around the world. Learn more at

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