Counterpart International (Counterpart) is a non-profit organization headquartered in Arlington, Virginia. According to the organization's mission statement, "Counterpart partners with local organizations - formal and informal - to build inclusive, sustainable communities in which their people thrive."Counterpart International was originally established to assist those in the South Pacific after World War II. It has since established programs and activities in nearly 60 countries on six continents.
The organization was established in 1965 as the Foundation of the People of the South Pacific (FSP) by an Australian Marist missionary priest, Stanley Hosie, and actress Elizabeth "Betty" Bryant Silverstein. Silverstein and Hosie focused on providing those in the post-World War II South Pacific region with resources to ease the post-war devastation, operating out of a New York City thrift shop.The United States Agency for International Development (USAID), with the encouragement of Congressman Ted Kupferman, registered FSP in 1968 as a Private Voluntary Organization, also known as a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO). During the 1970s, FSP obtained more grants in order to expand the foundation's staff and to transition field offices into indigenous, independent NGOs that were locally staffed. The first program to transition to a local NGO was FSP Fiji in 1981.
FSP provided institutions in the South Pacific with skills to rebuild infrastructure and sustainable solutions to poverty, improved local organizations, improved on the model of international aid, and facilitated local economic growth. In Samoa, for example, FSP offered tools to expand the fishing industry to increase sustainability and profit for the local fishermen and their communities.The organization expanded their programs globally when the Soviet Union fell in early 1991.In 1992, Hosie changed the organization's name to Counterpart International to better reflect their mission.