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Inspired by the vision of St. Marcellin Champagnat and promoted by the Marist Brothers of the Schools, FMSI has more than 10 years experience working in the field of international solidarity.  It was officially established in Italy as a government recognized non-profit organization with a social purpose (ONLUS) in 2007.


FMSI has a primary focus on child rights. We seek to promote innovative thinking and practical initiatives for the benefit of children and young people, especially those considered most vulnerable and neglected.  Our hope is to provide opportunities for children and young people to receive a meaningful education and to develop their full potential. 


Advocacy for Child Rights

FMSI established an office in Geneva, Switzerland, home of the United Nations Human Rights Council, which gives us the opportunity to participate in relevant UN conferences, meetings and working groups dealing with child rights.  By sharing the expertise of an international Marist network , FMSI is able to engage in discussions and decisions on standards and international agreements dealing with the human rights of children and young people. 

We offer training programs in child rights, UN mechanisms and UN procedures to encourage our colleagues to become aware of and actively engaged in efforts to help improve the quality of life for children around the world.


Project Funding and Coordination

FMSI supports projects mainly in developing countries from our Marist partners and colleagues. The purpose is to benefit children and young people, especially those most in need.

The Foundation supports projects directly with its own resources and through funding from donor agencies. The work of the Foundation  involves: identification of the donor agency, project writing and presentation, assuring a coordinating role, assisting the funding agency and the beneficiaries with communication, oversight and reporting.

Some examples of projects we have funded include: building and equipping schools and dormitories, sponsoring professional formation programs for educators, and supporting social development programs. In recent years, we have funded projects in Latin America, Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe and Oceania. 


Networking and Coalition Building

Realizing that many voices’ speaking as one improves the likelihood of effecting positive change in society and of being heard by those who can influence change, FMSI works with other NGOs, networks, coalitions and groups which share our objectives and values.

SED (Solidarity, Education and Development) and other Marist inspired NGOs, Franciscans International (FI), the International Catholic Child Bureau (BICE) and Edmund Rice International (ERI) are among the organizations FMSI calls partners. 


Getting Involved

We need your help and support if our vision of making the world a better place for children and young people is to become a reality.  Go to Collaborating with us or contact us at fmsi@fmsi-onlus.org to find opportunities on how you can become involved in making a difference in the lives of children.



Board of Directors

  • Emili Turú, FMS (Spain)
  • Joseph McKee, FMS (Great Britain)
  • Víctor Preciado Ramírez, FMS (México)
  • Ernesto Sánchez, FMS (México)
  • Josep María Soteras, FMS (Spain)
  • Michael DeWaas, FMS (Sri Lanka)
  • Eugene Kabanguka, FMS (Rwanda)
  • Antonio Ramalho, FMS (Brazil)
  • John Klein, FMS (USA)


  • Michael De Waas

Rome Office

  • Mario Meuti, FMS, Director
  • Angela Petenzi - Project Coordinator
  • Sara Panciroli - Micro-project Coordinator/Administration

Geneva Office

  • Manel Mendoza Prario, FMS - Director of Advocacy and Training, Child Rights | Child Rights Advocacy Officer
  • Vicente Falchetto, FMS - Child Rights Advocacy Officer
  • Evaristus Kasambwe, FMS - Child Rights Advocacy Officer

Oficina FMSI Cono Sur

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