75th Anniversary

In 1945as the world began to heal from the devastation of World War II, an inspired group of Americans sought to alleviate suffering. 

In the end, more than 100 million CARE Packages were delivered to families in need across Europe. 

Seven decades on, their simple idea has evolved from a surplus package of U.S. Army rations to a global mission to uplift women and girls and ultimately eradicate poverty in every corner of the earth. 

In May 2021CARE marks its 75th anniversary.

On this exciting occasion, we invite our supporters, our partners, global leaders, elected officials, and you to join us as we reinvigorate our commitment to changing the world. 

We have learned a few simple truths along the way: that women invest in their families and communities; that when disaster strikes, women and girls suffer most; and that when we give women access to dignified work, education, and proper healthcare, we give them the power to lift themselves, their families and their entire communities out of poverty. 

Over the last 75 years CARE has adapted our mission and our techniques, and we plan to do it again as we address the most pressing issues of the future.

Join Us

At this important moment for CARE—and for the world—we hope you will consider joining us. Your voice and your support will help us celebrate 75 years of fighting poverty worldwide and also prepare for the fight ahead.

Circle 75

Join our new national circle of 75 committed philanthropists who will support CARE’s vision of a world free from extreme poverty by sharing their expertise and investing in CARE’s future.

Learn more about Circle 75 and join this special group.


City Committees

Join a nationwide network of committees that create a unified force to lead and energize our community around a shared vision of investing in women and girls as a force for change.

Join a city committee near you:


CARE’s 75-Year History: A Timeline

See the highlights below, or view the full timeline.

1945: The original CARE Package® is born. Lincoln and Alice Clark came up with the name - ‘Cooperative for American Remittances to Europe,' so that the initials themselves would also have a meaning – CARE.
1946 - 1955: After just six months, CARE delivers the first CARE Packages to the port city of Le Havre, France. President Harry Truman, Herbert Hoover and Dwight Eisenhower ask Americans to support CARE. In 1955, CARE closes most of its European missions with the war recovery nearly complete.
1956 - 1965: The next ten years are witness to the ebb and flow of CARE’s presence around the world, responding to shifting political forces and sudden onset emergencies. CARE expands further throughout Asia, Latin America, and Africa.
1966 - 1975: The organization shifts to the “new CARE,” a development organization also prepared to rush aid to disaster areas. In 1967, CARE Europe forms to raise funds from European donors. The last of 100 million CARE Packages is sold. By 1975, there are no more European missions.
1976 - 1985: CARE emphasizes the training and contributions of national staff toward taking over operations locally. In 1982, CARE International is formally created. The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) funds a capital formation program through CARE.
1986 – 1995: CARE becomes the first western aid agency to work in China. The CARE Package is temporarily revived to aid the crumbling Soviet Union. CARE moves its headquarters from New York to Atlanta, and changes its name to the “Cooperative for Assistance Everywhere."
1996 – 2005: With more than 90 percent of CARE staff working in the countries they are from, CARE fosters diversity and local innovations. In 2001, the organization changes its logo from the variation on its original CARE “stamp” to the “circle of hands” still in use today.
2006 – 2015: CARE responds to the Boxing Day tsunami that struck 14 countries across the Indian Ocean. In 2006, the organization fully adopts a focus on women and girls. In June 2015, Michelle Nunn joins CARE USA as President and CEO after Helene Gayle steps down.
2016 – Present: In 2016, CARE marks 25 years of its VSLA program, now in 35 countries with 5 million members. In 2016, CARE marks the 70th anniversary of the CARE Package by having a handful of original recipients, once child refugees in Europe, write heartfelt letters to to Syrian refugee children.
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Our 75-Year History: A Timeline