KOLPING INTERNATIONAL: Guiding principle and Guidelines

“KOLPING INTERNATIONAL” is the family brand of the following legally independent entities:

  • “Kolpingwerk e.V.”
    (Kolping Society reg. Association) = International Kolping Society
  • “Internationale Adolph-Kolping-Stiftung”
    (International Adolph Kolping Foundation)
  • “Sozial- und Entwicklungshilfe des Kolpingwerkes – SEK e.V.”
    (Social and Development Aid of the Kolping Society reg. Association)

Guiding principle

We are a community of Christians who want to make something of ourselves and our environment. We encourage to social commitment and create a just world. We are borne by the faith in Jesus Christ, the Catholic Social Doctrine and the example of our founder Adolph Kolping


1. We are Christians
a. The IKS is part of the Catholic Church.
b. The work of Kolping International is based upon the Catholic Social Doctrine.
c. As a Catholic organization the Kolping International implements Christian values in society.
d. The IKS permits to experience faith in a personal way.

2. We are one family
a. The IKS is a democratically organized association.
b. Every member of a Kolping Family is member of the IKS.
c. The Kolping Families offer home and orientation for people of any age.
d. By means of networking the IKS forms a worldwide community of solidarity.

3. We defend the human dignity
a. Kolping International supports human dignity from the beginning until the end of life.
b. Kolping International strengthens the development of the personal abilities to live a life in self-responsibility.
c. Kolping International promotes marriage and family as basic prerequisite for the personal development of the individual and as a nucleus of society.
d. Kolping International works towards achieving international social justice.

4. We accompany people in the world of work
a. Kolping International supports a Christian perspective of work.
b. Kolping International contributes to establishing a just world of work.
c. Kolping International offers vocational training and further education.
d. Kolping International promotes professional and economic independence.

5. We contribute to shaping society
a. Kolping International promotes the holistic education of people.
b. Kolping International supports its members in forming an opinion.
c. Kolping International encourages people to act in self-determination.
d. Kolping International motivates and enables members to participate in political parties and socially relevant groups.
e. Kolping International self-responsibly assumes social tasks.
f. Kolping International takes a stand on concrete social developments.
g. The members of Kolping International assume responsibility for themselves and for society.

6. We are an international network of solidarity
a. Kolping International founds Kolping Families all over the world as self-help groups and self-help associations.
b. Kolping International combats all forms of poverty by means of the SEK e.V. and the International Adolph Kolping Foundation.

7. We rely on honorary work
a. Voluntary and full-time workers jointly work towards achieving the association’s goals, thus complementing each other due to the different orientation of their respective tasks and duties.
b. The honorary executives are the essential link to the members.
c. The programmatic foundations and the topical centres of activity are set by the democratically elected bodies.
d. The full-time workers self-responsibly implement the associational resolutions.
e. The full-time workers must support the actions of the voluntary workers.
f. The elected executives of Kolping International represent the requests and interests of the members.

8. We work in public
a. Kolping International attaches importance to a transparent and continuous documentation of its work.
b. Kolping International documents its work for the members and the broad public.
c. Kolping International provides donors and sponsors with relevant information.

Cologne, February 28, 2007

You can download this text as PDF file.