At the end of World War II, Americans Arthur Ringland and Dr. Lincoln Clark wanted to help families in Europe who were facing hunger and displacement because of the war. On November 27, 1945, 22 charities incorporated to establish the Cooperative for American Remittances to Europe (CARE) in New York. CARE began distributing U.S. Army surplus “10-in-1″ food rations, and the CARE Package™ was born.  

CARE delivered the first CARE Package™ in Le Havre, France, in May 1946. In 1948, with Soviet troops surrounding Berlin, CARE airlifted 200,000 CARE Packages™ to Berliners in need of food, around 60 percent of all private aid to the city. Over time, the contents of the CARE Package™ expanded from the initial military food rations to include baby food, blankets, clothes, books, school supplies and more. CARE gradually expanded aid outside of Europe to include countries in Asia and Latin America, and subsequently changed the “E” in its name to stand for “Everywhere.” In 1955, CARE closed most of its European missions as war recovery efforts reached an end. 

In 1993, CARE USA moved its headquarters from New York to Atlanta. The same year, CARE International begins focusing on women and girls as key agents of change to fight poverty. 

In 2005, CARE USA develops the CARE Action Network, which gathers advocates to encourage the U.S. Government to fulfill commitments to the Sustainable Development Goals and support foreign aid.  

In 2019, CARE International introduced poverty-fighting initiatives in the United States for the first time in the form of cash assistance and food.  

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, CARE USA revived the CARE Packages™ in the form of donations sent to global communities and gift cards sent to workers on the frontlines. CARE USA also distributed more than 6 million CARE Packages™ containing meals to food-insecure populations in six metros areas in the United States, including Atlanta, Houston, Louisville, Akron, Los Angeles, and the San Francisco Bay Area.  

Beyond its work within the United States, CARE USA works in countries across Asia, Africa, and Latin America and the Caribbean.  

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