International Young Catholic Students
Young Catholic Students was created in Europe as part of the Catholic Action movements that began to spread in the 1920s. Progress was interrupted by the Second World War, but its expansion began again with the constitution of the International Documentation and Information Centre in Freibourg, Switzerland, which in 1954 took the name International Young Catholic Students. From the original definition of IYCS as part of the specialised Catholic Action tradition, the features of an educational and apostolic movement for evangelising secondary schools and higher education establishments emerged; the importance of the basic team as the cell of the student community; militant commitment to transforming the world. It was in the 1970s that close cooperation with the International Movement of Catholic Students (see page 171) led to the creation of the IYCS-IMCS International Coordination, and the drafting of a joint pastoral Project. Recognised by the Holy See as an International Catholic Organisation, the IYCS is a member of the Conference of ICOs. As an NGO, it has consultative status with Ecosoc and UNESCO.
IYCS sets out to guide students to become architects and agents of social change, following in the footsteps of Jesus Christ, the Lord of history, and bearing witness to the Gospel values. The pedagogy used by the movement, based on "revision of life", enables students to become aware of situations, to analyse them critically in the light of the Gospel and the faith, to undertake a commitment to the pursuit of justice and peace, for the comprehensive growth of individuals and for sustainable development. IYCS performs its tasks by cooperating with other organisations in the same field, supporting the establishment of student movements pursuing the same goals, and fostering dialogue, exchange of experiences and mutual assistance between the member movements.
The supreme governing body of the IYCS is the World Council, which meets every four years chaired by a Praesidium, comprising the Secretary General and three delegates of the member or cooperating national movements. The World Council is assisted by the General Secretariat, composed of a permanent team made up of the Secretary General, the Ecclesiastical Assistant, and by a number of other members according to the decision taken by the World Council. The Continental Secretariats operate in Africa, Asia, Europe, Oceania and South America. Members of IYCS can be member movements (associations of Catholic students recognised by their bishops’ conferences) and cooperating movements (associations of Catholic students at the national level, or representing a major ethnic community in a particular country).
90 affiliated movements in 104 countries belong to IYCS, as follows: Africa (39), Asia (18), Europe (19), Middle East (5), North America (2), Oceania (1), and South America (20).
Newsletter, published quarterly in English, French and Spanish.
IYCS International Secretariat
7, Impasse Reille - 75014 Paris - France
Tel. [+33] 1.45481472 - Fax 1.42840453