The World Union of Catholic Women’s Organisations (WUCWO) was founded in 1910 and now represents 100 Catholic women’s organisations worldwide, active in 66 countries including all continents and some island states, representing more than eight (8) million Catholic women of every walk of life. WUCWO’s aim is to promote the presence, participation and co-responsibility of Catholic women in society and the Church, in order to enable them to fulfil their mission of evangelisation and to work for human development, particularly in increasing educational opportunities, poverty reduction and the advancement of human rights beginning with the fundamental right to life.
In 2006, WUCWO was erected by the Holy See as a Public International Association of the Faithful. This canonical status honours the efforts of faithful Catholic women active in our Union at the parish, diocesan, national and international levels.
WUCWO unites Catholic women in the world to give them a voice on the international platform. Since their inception, WUCWO has held Consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), the Human Rights Council (Geneva), the FAO (Rome), participatory status at the Council of Europe (Strasbourg) and is an official partner of UNESCO (Paris).
WUCWO examines the critical issues that have an impact on the lives of women internationally and defends the dignity and the rights of all.
WUCWO coordinates the activities of Catholic women's organisations worldwide, serving as a necessary link between them and the network of international organizations and faith communities.
Through them, WUCWO helps train those who are without resources or opportunities, provides victims of violence and poverty a means of subsistence for them and their children and helps enable them to fulfill their mission of evangelisation and to work for human development.
WUCWO’s principal areas of activity are:
- Promote the formation of women to meet contemporary challenges
- Foster awareness and respect of cultural diversity
- Promote the international dimension within its Member Organisations
- Co-ordinate activities of Member Organisations at the international level
- Present the positions of WUCWO and represent the Member Organisations to international bodies
- Network with other international organisations and faith communities for the respect of human rights, especially for women
- Encourage ecumenical and interreligious dialogue.