In 1965, Elizabeth “Betty” Silverstein, concerned with the devastating effects of World War II in the Pacific, launched the Foundation of the Peoples of the South Pacific (FSP) with Father Stan Hosie, a Marist Priest in the Pacific. Father Hosie was also appointed as FSP‟s first Executive Director.
By 1969, FSP had become a major international Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) providing resources for community centres, technical schools, scholarships, agriculture and water supplies.
Metropolitan offices were established to seek funding in the USA, Europe and Australia. Funding from USAID enabled FSP to establish permanent offices in PNG, Fiji, Tonga, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu and Kiribati.
More recently, FSP invited Tuvalu Association of NGOs (TANGO), Ole Siosiomaga (OLSSI), Timor Aid and the Palau Conservation Society to join the network.
As FSP partners evolved into independent NGOs and the organization grew to accommodate other established NGOs in the Pacific, a structure was needed to maintain the organization‟s historical networking strengths. In 1992, the FSP network met in Suva, Fiji and formalized the Foundation of the Peoples of the South Pacific International (FSPI) and their regional secretariat.
Together the FSP network ensures that communities in the Pacific benefit from both the resources and expertise of the developed world, and the extensive grassroots knowledge and experience gained from more that 42 years of working in Pacific Island communities.
FSPI is governed by a Board of Management. Each member organization is represented on the Board of Management which meets annually at its annual general meeting. The Board meets to address regional issues that fall into the ambit of the work of the FSP network.
The Board‟s decisions are made by consensus then outlined in an AGM report, from which policies are developed where necessary and factored in the Executive Director‟s work plan. The Board is also responsible for approving the audited financial accounts each year.