IOCC History and Timeline

Browse IOCC’s history, mission, and milestones

IOCC through the Years

In 1992, International Orthodox Christian Charities (IOCC) was formed by the Standing Conference of the Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas (SCOBA), the predecessor to the modern-day Assembly, along with lay leaders Mr. Charles R. Ajalat, Mr. Andrew A. Athens, and Mr. John G. Rangos Sr. In addition, the faithful support of honorary board members Mr. George M. Marcus and the late Dr. George J. Farha, has ensured IOCC’s growth and continued service over the last 25 years. IOCC united the efforts of Orthodox Christians in response to the historic upheaval caused by the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the wars in the former Yugoslavia, which displaced 2.5 million people. The organization’s first initiative was two airlifts in February 1992: US military cargo planes carried $4.8 million of food items and medical supplies, flying from Pittsburgh to Moscow.

Throughout the years, IOCC has continued to address the needs of the world’s most vulnerable people and communities in the midst of historic upheaval—from the dissolution of the Soviet Union and wars in the former Yugoslavia, to the current civil war in Syria and ongoing economic crisis gripping Greece. As the official humanitarian aid agency of the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the United States of America, IOCC has provided $600 million in humanitarian assistance to vulnerable people in more than 60 countries.

Read the full story of IOCC’s first airlift to Moscow in 1992 here.