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About us



Cecilia O'Dwyer IBVM, Present director of the IBVM NGO office

Cecilia O’Dwyer IBVM, Present director of the IBVM NGO office

The Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Loreto Generalate) is an international congregation of Catholic Women Religious. It opened its NGO office in New York in September 2003, having received Associate Status with the Department of Public Information of the United Nations. In 2015 it was granted special consultative status with ECOSOC. The worldwide IBVM Network is present at the United Nations where the voice of civil society is of increasing importance in multilateral decisions on vision and goals aimed at encouraging the human community to peaceful and respectful collaboration in a way that benefits all people and our planet.                                                                                                                                                                                   

The IBVM plays an active role as part of civil society working with the United Nations in New York. As associates of the Department of Public Information we attend the Briefings held by the Department of Public Information (DPI) and take part in the Annual DPI Conferences. We conduct workshops during DPI Conferences where we bring together members, colleagues and persons with experience and expertise on specific areas of Social and Sustainable Development. In the same way, the voice and experience of persons living in marginalized situations contribute to our work for a just and sustainable world. We are in contact with the Mission of a number of Member States at the United Nations. Communication with our networks to promote the values and activities of the United Nations is a central part of our work as associates of the Department of Public Information.

Our focus is mainly on Women and Children within the context of 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda.

Transforming our World: The 2030 Sustainable Development Agenda with its 17 goals mobilizes our energies in education, awareness raising and advocacy. Specific areas of involvement are: The Eradication of Poverty, Education for Global Citizenship,Trafficking in Persons, Gender Equality,Financing for Development.

Read more about the history of the IBVM, its representatives and the impact they have made 10 years being at the United Nations HERE

IBVM Corporate Stance on Human Trafficking

At the General Congregation held in September 2014 at Loyola, Spain, the following statement was adopted:

“As members of the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary, an international and multicultural congregation of women religious, we pledge to work for the eradication of all forms of human trafficking and its causes, particularly among women and children, wherever we live and minister”.


The IBVM also has a great history of offering interning opportunities to those who are interested in working in the NGO sphere. If you want to apply for an internship at the IBVM at the United Nations in New York, send an email of interest to ibvmunngo@gmail.com. Watch HERE for an insight into the interning experience.