1956 – a small group of college students begin serving the native people of Alaska’s Copper Valley
1960s – several U.S. Jesuit Provinces begin lay volunteer programs to assist in their international missions
1966 – Superior General Pedro Arrupe, SJ studies the lay volunteer movement in Alaska
1975-80 – JVC East, Midwest, Southwest and South are formed
1983 – Jesuit International Volunteers (JIV) was established, later renamed Jesuit Volunteers International (JVI)
2005 – Over 11,000 FJVs and counting!
2009 – JVI and JVC East, Midwest, South and Southwest merge to become one global organization, JVC, to increase resources and capacity
2016 – JVC celebrates 60 years
The Jesuit Volunteer Corps (JVC) is the largest lay Catholic full-time volunteer program in the world and has been a pioneer in the service landscape for 40 years. Over 10,000 men and women have served tens of thousands of individuals and families within hundreds of communities worldwide since its inception. Jesuit Volunteers have worked tirelessly for social justice, while exploring their spirituality and faith through a framework of Catholic, Ignatian values.
Today’s JVC has its roots in JVC Northwest which began in Alaska almost 60 years ago. In the early 1970s, JVC organizations were established to encompass four additional regions in the lower 48 states as well as overseas. In 2009, four regional JVC programs and Jesuit Volunteers International united to form the Jesuit Volunteer Corps, while JVC Northwest remained an independent organization. Today’s national JVC brings the stories of these five organizations into a shared history, values, and mission. JVC’s longevity and stability locally and nationally brings deep institutional knowledge to our work, and fresh, innovative thinking to service and social justice.
The experience of Jesuit Volunteers is facilitated by staff, based across the US who understand community needs, maintain local ties, and provide strong personal and programmatic assistance, guidance and support in furthering the mission. The JVC national organization is headquartered in Baltimore, Maryland, and is home to the office of the president and other administrative departments. JVC is governed by a board of directors.