Annual Report 2017 | AFS Intercultural Programs India

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once an

AFSer always an AFSer Annual report 2017

Sep, 2016 - Aug, 2017

contents Message from Daniel Obst, President & CEO of AFS Intercultural Programs --- 1 Message from Angela Roye, Board Chair, AFS Intercultural Programs India --- 2 Message from Divya Arora, National Director of AFS Intercultural Programs India --- 3 AFS India in 2016 --- 4 Words from our Partners --- 5 Programs Trip to Kerala --- 6 Regional Class Exchange Program --- 7 PEACE Project | Peace in Europe and Asia through global Citizenship Education --- 8 AFS Short-Term Programs --- 9 Sponsored Programs --- 10 Sentio | 18 Plus Programs --- 11 #AFSeffect | Impact Stories - 12 Education Principals’ Meet 2017 --- 14 New Zealand Teacher Exchange Program --- 14 3rd Annual AFS Asia-Pacific International Global Citizenship Education Forum --- 15 Summer Institute for Intercultural Communication --- 15 AFS-AAI ICL & OD Responsible Regional Meeting --- 16 AFS-AAI Leadership Development Program --- 16 Orientations & Training --- 17

Volunteer 11th Annual Volunteer Meet --- 18 Global Youth Service Day --- 19 AFS India Day Celebrations ---- 19 Alumni Engagement --- 20 Regional Volunteer Exchange Program --- 21 AFS India Cricket League ---- 21 International Volunteer Exchange Program --- 22 Facing Forward | Presidents’ Meet 2017 --- 23 A World of Opportunities | AFS Meet 2017 --- 23 Our Leaders in Chapters --- 24 Advocacy AFS-AAI Regional Partner Meeting --- 25 Association with YES Foundation --- 25


Dear volunteers, The year behind us marks 70 years since AFS started providing intercultural learning opportunities around the world. This year has also been important because we launched the Network-wide Strategy to guide our work in the years to come and ensure that we seize the full potential of our mission in developing active global citizens, empowering schools and institutions and expanding access to intercultural education. Your work has made it possible for us to get this far, and you remain crucial for the future of AFS. The world needs more active global citizens like you, if we want to solve the accumulating present day challenges and advance as societies. Learning to live together is the central idea expressed in our mission and embodied by AFS volunteers everywhere. That is why what you do to support communities, foster intercultural competence in others and develop your own active citizenship creates more cohesive, inclusive and empowered societies. With about 40% of India’s youth below the age of 20, and India having the world’s largest youth population, AFS India has an enormous opportunity, and also responsibility, to expand access to our intercultural learning opportunities and extend our impact. You have the power to define the future by meeting the educational needs and aspirations of these young people. AFS was created more than 100 years ago as a humanitarian volunteer organization in response to a devastating war. With their willingness to take action and their affinity for innovation, AFS volunteers carved out a role for AFS in peacetime, creating the organization as we know it today that perpetuates peace and understanding among new generations. More than 500,000 young people from around the world, their families and communities have experienced the transformational power of the AFS effect to date. This shows just how much volunteerism matters. Thank you to all the volunteers and active global citizens of all ages in India who continue to take action in your communities and the world. I am proud to be a part of this joint effort to provide more people with the intercultural skills and understanding to actively contribute to society and create change. Sincerely, Daniel Obst President & CEO AFS Intercultural Programs 11

WHY VOLUNTEER? Because it is good for the soul. The “Feel Good” factor cannot be measured. It’s value is tremendous and varies from volunteer to volunteer. One can volunteer in a million different ways - Visiting a sick friend and spending time chatting with him is volunteering. Helping an old lady cross the street is volunteering. Carrying a young child’s heavy school bag is volunteering. Buying medicine for your neighbor who has fractured her leg is volunteering. Gone are the days when volunteering only meant helping those who are Differently Abled - reading to the visually challenged, teaching the hearing challenged to dance, or playing board games with the physically challenged. Today volunteering is exciting and invigorating. We in AFS are truly lucky and blessed. We volunteer with an organisation that has stood the test of time - more than 102 years old. We are changing lives - the lives of the young people whom we recruit and send on programs giving them a life-changing experience, the lives of host families who have been touched by a child from way across the globe, the lives of schools, who are becoming truly international because of AFS. We, the AFS volunteers do all this and more, ably supported by efficient and hard working staff, who, like volunteers work round the clock to keep the wheels of AFS turning. While we volunteer, we also have fun, we learn a lot, we acquire new skills, and we make friends around the world, Let us keep in mind that we are only a drop in the ocean but we are a very significant drop. A drop that is contributing to world understanding and global peace and harmony. So, let’s walk tall, feel proud, and continue to have fun as we change peoples’ lives. Happy Volunteering and Thank You for what you do for AFS and for the world. Angela Roye Board Chair AFS Intercultural Programs India 2

One among the biggest entrepreneurs of the world, Walt Disney, was a struggling cartoonist in California, USA, and lived in a small rented room, which was frequented by a quiet and shy mouse! Over time, he developed a liking for it and started cartooning “comics” around it for a church for which he was paid 10 cents per cartoon! With his imagination, vision and passion he kept at it over the decades. He became an iconic figure of the world through his creating Disneyland, (1955) in Anaheim, California; Disney Movies and allied products around the Mickey Mouse (1928). Today the brand name “Micky Mouse” gives his company $7 billion a year in royalties alone. It is reported that when he was surveying the huge piece of land from a hill top he started talking to himself: there I will do this; there I will do this and so on! His VP finance remarked, “…Walt where the money will come from…” Walt angrily cut him down to size: “…look, when I am “dreaming”, let me do so because I firmly believe that what the mind of man conceives, it can achieve!” Since AFS India restarted its operations in India, we started dreaming, and slowly from 4 chapters in 2005 we are now present in 25+ cities. From doing 1 program, we have more than 10 programs being executed in our organization. We worked with our schools and started various programs. We worked with our volunteers and made sure that we focus on their overall development which in turn helped made the organization grow – in terms of numbers, programs and finance. In all this years of our growth we have maintained our quality. The dream was simple – Growth with Quality. With the set strategy, we are sure which way we are headed. The team of AFS – volunteers, board and staff had clear vision and compatibility to work towards the common dream. With the help of our volunteers pan-India, we divided our work. By and by, our action brought positive difference in the community. With constant enthusiasm and motivation, we have kept going and together we hope to keep on creating impact in the society. Yes, we faced, and we will face challenges along the way, but thanks to our volunteers who are brave enough to face the challenges with us, together. Together, their determination and commitment shows the journey of last 12 years.

Divya Arora National Director AFS Intercultural Programs India

Today the organisation is at position where we’re selfreliant, motivated and ready to give opportunity to others to be a changemaker, a global citizen with the focus on creating positive impact in the world. Our whole office takes pride in having such a great AFS India family who are always determined to create a better tomorrow.


AFS India in 2016



participants hosted in India on yearlong program from

Indian participants went abroad on AFS yearlong Exchange Programs to



AFS partner countries

AFS partner countries



Indian participants went abroad on short-term programs to


AFS partner countries

participants hosted in India on short-term program from


AFS partner countries





AFS Sentio Participants hosted in India on 18 plus programs from

AFS partner countries

registered volunteers present in


Indian participants went abroad on sponsored yearlong programs to


AFS partner countries


volunteers trained on Level W Intercultural Learning Training


volunteer became National Qualified Trainers in the field of Intercultural Learning

AFS cities or chapters


Numbers from 2016-17

Words from our Partners We have to recognize ICL helps us to understand systems, frictions and actually help us learn about different cultures. We need to work hard. Cultures are more than language, dress, and food customs. It is not only learning how to use chopsticks but creating deeper understanding which is equally very important. Vishakha N. Desai, Ph.D. (AFS ’67) Chair, Board of Trustees Being able to interact with others who embraces collaboration and understanding, developing empathy is a clue and keyword for today’s lack of understanding. Cultural awareness and sensibility must be a goal for diversity and inclusiveness. Rosario Gutierrez Becquet, Partner Director of AFS Colombia It is equally important that we clearly make the connections between our efforts to provide people with intercultural learning opportunities and the 21st century skills that all educational systems around the world are aiming to deliver. Intercultural learning is not a nice-to-have privilege but a core competency that all learners need in our world today. Ebbe Skovdal, Corporate Secretary, AFS International The teacher should have the intercultural awareness him/herself that will enable him/her to encourage students to be aware of the differences, making them responsive to them and teaching them to adopt their own context, always with reference to their culture.

Nonna Kovrizhnykh, Partner Director of AFS Russia

Intercultural Learning is a great example of non-formal education which our program participants, be that students or host families, are exposed to everyday. This is a reason why reflection upon intercultural learning among the participants is so important. I strongly believe that by placing intercultural learning into a formal educational framework we have the possibility to make an impact on many more people than we do today. Ulrik Wehner, Partner Director of AFS Denmark Education is a societal effort and a considerable part of this happens in schools, but it is not fair to expect them to do it all alone. So, my view is that schools need partners and supporters to help them deliver all that society expects and certainly, intercultural competence is such an area where organizations like AFS can be of great support to schools. Ann’Andreza Martins, Partner Director of AFS Intercultura Brazil We strongly believe that we cannot promote a more just and peaceful world if we are not able to achieve that in our “backyard”. [We need to] encourage our students to become global leaders that act locally. How? Basically, combining intercultural competencies with social entrepreneurship skills. And we found this combination quite exciting and relevant. In summary, we see international education as a mean to encourage people to engage in improving our world, our societies, but especially our local communities. Juan Medici, Partner Director of AFS Argentina A German philosopher of the 18th century said that people become educated by welcoming the world within themselves. AFS translates this aspiration into a concrete educational project. [Students] benefit from being taken out of their environment and from looking at their reality/country/history from the outside, through the eyes of people who have grown up in a different system. They also benefit from being placed in a “minority situation” in a new country, where they have to learn new ways to make themselves accepted by the host society. It is an exercise in humbleness and flexibility. Simone Caporali, Executive Director of Intercultura (Italy) 5


Posing with Elephants

Trip to Kerala There were 48 hosted students along with 4 staff members on the optional trip facilitated by AFS India, from 3rd to 9th April. AFS India initiated the grant of scholarship to participants who undertook in applying for a 1 minute video on creating awareness on World Autism Day. There were 6 scholarship winners, who were selected by an NGO’s expert who work exclusively in the area of Autism awareness. The places visited were Munnar, Thekkady, Alleppey, Kovalam, Trivandrum and Kanyakumari. This road trip has been poised with variety of sightseeing from the hills of Munnar to the beaches of Kovalam. This also had the opportunity to know the cultural aspect of Kerala, where they witnessed the ancient martial arts and classical dance, Kathakali, apart from eating Dosas and drinking Coconut water.

En route to Munnar, Cheeyappara Waterfalls

The students enjoyed the fun part with elephant safari, being on the houseboat of Alleppey and further viewing the sunsets of Kanyakumari. The entire trip was poised with mixed feelings of reunions and to recognize the world-view of entirely different culture.

At the beach



AFS India Inter-State Regional Class Exchange Program

Activity during Exchange

AFS India started Interstate Regional Exchange Program to give regional cultural learning to the students of schools within India. The program facilitates exchanges between different schools, giving them an opportunity to learn about different cultures, languages, lifestyles that exist in the country by engaging the students into various extracurricular activities and other learning process such as art, craft, music, dance, calligraphy etc. Since its inception in 2015, AFS Regional Class Exchange has gained a lot of appreciation amongst the School Fraternity. With 7 successful exchanges in 2015-16, AFS Regional Class Exchange Program is one of the sought after program by new and existing partner schools. The program facilitates Short Term Exchanges between different schools of India, altogether giving an opportunity to the students to experience the different and diverse cultures, languages, lifestyles that exist in our country.

Students during Exchange

Chettinad Public School, Karaikudi and Amity International School, Gurgaon - 13th-19th November, 2016- Hosting by Amity International School, Gurgaon - 25th-31st March, 2017- Hosting by Chettinad Public School

So far, we have had 6 successful exchanges between 7 AFS partner schools, from September, 2016 to August, 2017.

Anand Vidya Vihar, Vadodara and Choithram School, North Campus, Indore - 26th August-2nd September, 2017 - Hosting by Anand Vidya Vihar, Vadodara

Anand Niketan School, Ahmedabad & Yadavindra Public School Patiala - 7th-12th November, 2016 - Hosting by YPS, Patiala Choithram School North campus (CSNC) and Birla International School, Kishangarh(BIS) - 16th-25th October, 2016- Hosting by Birla International School - 18th-26th January, 2017- Hosting by Choithram School, Indore


PROGRAMS PEACE Project | Peace in Europe and Asia through global Citizenship Education PEACE stands for “Peace in Europe and Asia through global Citizenship Education”. The EFIL AAI project is sponsored by the European Commission’s Erasmus+ programme. The overall aim of the project is to develop a new sustainable 3 month secondary school exchange program between Asia & Europe which recognises nonformal learning. In the PEACE programme trimester exchanges will take place between Asia and Europe, with end-of-stay camps on global citizenship in Europe (Brussels) and in Asia (Kuala Lumpur). The target group will be secondary school students between 15-18 years old. The programme will be open to all EFIL and AAI Partners. The PEACE project participants are staff and key volunteers of 8 European AFS organisations (EFIL members) and 7 Asian AFS partners (AAI members). Throughout the two years of the EU sponsored project, they will play a relevant role in the development of the future PEACE programme. The PEACE Project Seminar (18-24 June, New Delhi) brought together 16 European and Asian project participants from 14 countries. The European

participants had previously been on a one week study visit in different Asian countries where they explored the local realities of the Asian partner by visiting local schools and NGO and engaging with the local AFS volunteers. The Seminar in New Delhi aimed at sharing and discussing the experiences of the study visits, exploring the concept of Global Citizenship and most importantly designing the outline and content of the future PEACE trimester programme. For the discussion on Global Citizenship an external speaker, Dr. Sumer Singh, former school Principal and member of the Board of AFS India, gave an inspiring talk on education and Global Citizenship. Right after the closing of the seminar, the PEACE Steering Group met for its second project meeting. Members of the PEACE Steering Group are: Divya Arora (AFS India), Armieyah (Mae) Ayob (AFS Philippines), Katharina Schulze-Herking (AFS Germany), Inga Menke (EFIL) and Paul Claes (EFIL). Focus was on sharing the outcomes of the seminar and assessment of the follow-up work, including communication with the Partners.

Group photo



AFS Short-Term Programs Germany Intercultural Green Summer Session The program focuses on imparting learning related to Ecology education in Germany

AFS Short-term programs provides fantastic opportunity to live and study in another country with a minimum interruption to students’ education. With different durations of 2 to 8 weeks, students get to follow the journey of improving language skills, gain understanding of AFS Educational Goals, become global, embrace the local lifestyle by being exposed to intercultural learning.

UK Intercultural Summer Camp A two-week summer camp with the purpose of improving the English language skills in UK school Spain Intercultural Summer Camp The summer camp focuses on the Spanish language along with intercultural learning in Spain

Last year, AFS India provided opportunities to many students from all over India to be part of short-term programs.

USA Global Prep Program in Maryland A Global prep program to gain an intercultural exposure in Maryland, USA

Sending Programs Hungary Home-stay Program A home-stay program interspersed with intercultural learning and ten-day tour in Hungary

France School and Home-stay Program A school as well as home-stay based program for the participants to gain French language knowhow and attain exposure of French culture

Italy Home-stay Program A home-stay program bearing the component of intercultural learning by being hosted by an Italian family

Hosting Programs

Italy Art and Culture Program Italy being noted for its art; this program captures the various art forms practiced and the cultural nuances of Italy

BP Stem Program A six-week program focused on STEM subject as well as Intercultural learning. The program was sponsored by British Petroleum, Apart from the curriculum classes, the participants are offered a glimpse of Indian cultural and tradition introduced through Yoga, Classical Dance lessons.

Germany Reciprocal Program A reciprocal program focusing on the intercultural learning of two countries

English Language Summer Program with Japan & Italy A six-week program focusing on English language learning along with Intercultural learning. Apart from English language learning, this program also brings cultural exposure to participants through activities such as Yoga, Dance etc.

Germany Stem Summer Session A two-week program focused on learning the STEM subject as well as Intercultural learning in Germany

The most important lesson that I have learnt in this short while is that a lot of us may look very different and have different cultures; we’re all the same from the inside. I’ve also learnt to appreciate the small things in life. I’ve realized that a thing as simple as having dinner together as a family, without a television, can really make your day better.

Program gave me a break from reality. It gave me some good free time away from my busy schedule. I could just be me for a while, with no filters on to impress anybody. It gave me a broader perspective about everything around but the one thing that I cherish the most out of all the things is the bonding, the relationship that we created with the people we stayed with during this one month.

- Participant

- Participant 9


Sponsored Programs

The Kennedy-Lugar Youth Exchange and Study (YES) program, funded by the U.S. Department of State, provides scholarships for secondary school students (age 15-17) from countries with significant Muslim populations to spend one academic year in the United States. 40 students went from India to USA on YES Programs in 2016-17. Marching J Scholarship to Japan:

YES Abroad The YES Abroad program is a U.S. State Department Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs sponsored cultural exchange program between the U.S. and India. Participants live with a host family, attend a local school, promoting mutual understanding between the United States and India by forming lasting relationships with their host family and friends. 05 students came from USA to India for the YES Abroad program in 2016-17.

Johnny & Associates, Inc. and its group companies have established “Marching J Scholarship” Program. This Program is aiming to invite high school students from countries devastated by an Earthquake or a Tsunami and to extend approximately one year for study in Japan. This Program has been founded immediately after the Great East Japan Earthquake. 1 student went from India to Japan on Marching J Scholarship in 2016-17. Italy Scholarship


The scholarship is granted by Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The National Security Language Initiative for Youth (NSLI-Y) aims to provide American youth linguistic skills and cultural knowledge that will spark a lifetime interest in foreign languages and cultures. Sponsored by the U.S. State Department Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, students come to India under this scholarship to learn Hindi under an academic year and summer program.

1 students went from India to Italy on Italy Scholarship.

05 students came from USA to India for the NSLI-Y Academic Year program in 2016-17 and 18 students came under the NSLI-Y Summer Program in 2017.

Yesterday something exciting happened in my language learning. One of my friends asked me, “What are you doing?” I quickly replied, “Psych project,” which was what I was working on. She then started giggling and looked at another friend, asking, “Do you think she realizes?” I was really confused and kept asking what had happened. She finally told me that she had asked me what I was doing in Hindi, “Aap kya kar rahi hai?” I hadn’t noticed at all, it completely felt like she had spoken to me in English. I love learning Hindi, from trying to understand when others are talking, to forming new sentences, to writing stories in the lovely Hindi script (Devanagari). I hope to be completely confident in my understanding and speaking of Hindi by the end of my exchange!

BP Scholarship The BP Global Citizens of Tomorrow scholarship program provides financially-challenged students the opportunity to study abroad and gain the intercultural skills needed to succeed in a global economy. The goal of the program is to increase students’ intercultural awareness and secondlanguage skills. 02 students came from USA to India and 03 student from India went to USA for the BP Scholarship program in 2016-17.

10 10

- Hosted Student


Sentio | 18 Plus Programs

Sentio Inc. is a not-for-profit global education network that was created in 2014 as a subsidiary of AFS Intercultural Programs Inc. to develop a global network of member organizations to further promote the AFS mission and provide intercultural learning opportunities for adults above 18 years.

Bert during workshop

Experiences of 18 plus Participants AFS Intercultural Programs India offers an array of Sentio Programs. These programs provide individuals, young adults and professionals above the age of 18 years with the opportunity to expand their skills, knowledge and experience on the intellectual, professional, personal, social, cultural and global front, leaving them with the opportunity to choose from Academic, Internships, Volunteering, and Teaching programs. Here are the experiences of participants on Sentio Programs:


Global Competency - Guiding the Way into the 21st Century

I am having a wonderful experience on my program. Every month here is better than the last month. In March, it started with our AFS seminar. The theme of the Seminar was politics and we were to talk for a week and that was all we were going to talk about. I was pretty excited to see my batch mates again and also to see new groups there from different organizations. And it turned out to be more than what I expected. People I met there were simply amazing, we discussed about our countries, our politics, security, education, corruption and people. Those topics were very intense but interesting.

Bert Vercamer, Chief Program Innovation Officer of AFS Intercultural Programs and Sentio General Manager came to India on 27th August, 17. During his time here, he facilitated two whole-day AFS and Sentio Workshop, Global Competency - Guiding the Way into the 21st Century, on 29th and 30th August, 17 for Corporates & Universities. The aim of the workshop was to introduce the participants about various components of culture, share knowledge of Global Competency with focus on creating awareness about Sentio & its programs.


During his visit, he also interacted with staffers of AFS India where he discussed Network Strategy while staffers from various department gave departmental updates respectively. Staffers also discussed various AFS India Strategic Documents related to each of their departments showcasing various new developments. Bert also gave an information session on Sentio and enlightened the staffers about various new updates.

- Sentio Participant from India to Germany

I stayed at the center and they provided me with Indian Food which I liked very much. I learned the authentic traditional way of Yog practice and also Ayurved. I really enjoyed these experiences as it helped me to grow as a person, to be in balance, and I got to make new friends, know another culture, and to gain confidence to conduct Yoga classes in Guatemala. Everything was perfect, and for those who are interested in Yoga, I encourage you to come to this center. - Sentio Participant from Guatemala to India



Also to go with AFS, an organization that gave me the chance to experience this, was a great decision, because they did not only help and support me in my stay, also before they prepared me on meetings and tried to make me understand what problems I could face in my stay and how to solve them

Everywhere I went, there were instances of people welcoming me, blessing me, and loving me. People were so proud of their country and excited to welcome people from other places. Their faces lit up when I spoke in broken Hindi. Many times, I was interacting with people who did not speak English, looked different from me, were of different religions, and lived on an opposite side of the globe, but I learned that we shared a common humanity communicated with a smile, “namaste”, dance, or song. - Hosted Student in India

- Hosted Student in India

Going into this exchange, I expected a homogenous India, where people only ate curry and naan and spoke in pure Hindi. Instead, I learned that India is a land of unity and diversity, where Muslims, Hindus, Jains, Punjabis, Zoroastrians, and other people of faith learn and pray together in school - speaking Marathi, Gujarati, Hindi, English, Bengali, or the other official languages of India. When I had to solo the opening lines to “Chaiyya Chaiyya” in front of ten Indian teachers, I learned to laugh at myself, and when I forgot the word for fan on multiple occasions, I learned that it is okay to make mistakes. This exchange has changed the way I see India, the rest of the world, and myself, and for that, I am forever grateful. - Hosted Student in India

My host family was always with me in every moment that I spent here [host country]. Here in India my mom always did our laundry. The situation was different there. I learned to do my own laundry. That was another big accomplishment for me. Talking about my accomplishments, it’s not necessary that all the accomplishments are supposed to be huge, right? I learned how to be independent; to keep my room clean; to speak when the correct time to speak; punctuality, and much more. One of the most important thing I learned is that not all the faces of the life will be same.

#AFSeffect Impact Stories

- Indian Student Abroad

Participating in Sports Festivals, grooming my music skills in the Choir club and meeting new AFSers has shown me the immense potential of learning through interaction. - Indian Student Abroad

Every single day is different from another and that’s an AFS experience. I look forward to all kind of experience as AFS taught us ‘Nothing is good or bad, it is just different.’ And I’m very glad to feel the differences. I’m discovering new unexpected things everyday, and it’s a learning experience. At times it is hard to express in words, but I enjoy going through the experience and feel the differences or similarities between cultures overall. - Indian Student Abroad



I experienced a lot of new things here. I met new people and made new friendships I know will last forever. Most of all, I gained a second family who loves me and cares about me. One of my favorite things for me here was my host school. I loved walking down those packed hallways and using those cool American handshakes with the friends in the hallways. I’ll always remember being completely lost on the first day of school and asking a lot of questions because I had no idea where I was supposed to be. All my teachers were so supportive and were always willing to help me. This exchange program helped me know my true self and my abilities. I have a different point of view to everything now. - Indian Student Abroad

We had a past hosting experience, but hosting for the second time also taught us new things and that there’s always something to learn and know from a new member of the family like the way to absorb our culture, daily routine and our house habits. - Host Family

I have been here in India now for more than four months but still I am not able to put in words what I am experiencing over here every day. It is a long trip of learning, whether from the Indians nature, the warmth they share with every person they meet or the strength of the belief and how they celebrate it with all their different festivals and traditions. - Hosted Student in India

I met many people who changed me and situations that made me grow, a lot. A personal growth made of mistakes, efforts, tears, loneliness, pages of diary but also holding, winks, group hugs, photos, shared food and an unconditioned happiness that is always with me.

It is a good initiative taken to exchange cultures, we experienced how to live with an unknown person from a foreign country. Through this, we also came to know about the cultural heritage of the hosted country and learnt a lot about our culture also. It leads is to exchange views on the global scenario. - Host Family

Traveling to another country is great, but living there and becoming a part of a family is truly amazing. My host family was not the wealthiest in the small town of Carrara, but the amount of love I received from them was truly priceless. My time in Italy was like a double chocolate cake, where you cherish every moment and never want it to end. If given the opportunity, I would definitely go again to Italy, the place where I learnt to appreciate life. - Indian Student Abroad

AFS was a good medium which helped me in experiencing the sense of a responsible global citizen. Another wonderful addition to our family. My family members including me learnt the sense of adaptation, patience and courage to learn something new from him. For me, it was a life changing experience at home. I always cherish those memories spend with him and always share with my near and dear ones. Most of my friends are familiar with Paul because of my sharing. - Host Family

- Hosted Student in India 13


Principals’ Meet Mumbai | 18th February 2017 Principals and heads from top education institutions of Mumbai attended the meet hosted by VG. Vaze College of Arts, Science and Commerce on 18th February 2017. This was an initiative by Mumbai chapter who put in their heart and soul to make it a huge success. In total 24 representatives attended the meet from 18 different schools and colleges and NGO’s. We thank Dr. B.B Sharma, Principal of V.G Vaze college for his constant support in organizing the event. Dr. Sumer at Principal’s Meet, Chandigarh

Vizag | 1st April 2017

Chandigarh | 19th August 2017

Vizag is a new chapter for AFS India. With support from our new volunteer Mrs. Geeta Krishnan and guidance of Mrs. Angela Roye, AFS India Board chair, this principal’s meet was organized with four school participating in the event. Along with sharing information of AFS, we also conducted a short ICL training for the participants. Ms. Sarita Badhwar facilitated the same. The meet was hosted by DPS, Vizag. To share their experiences, we had Mr. Venkat Suresh Lolla, Principal of Global City International School and Mr. Janardhan Roye, senior volunteer of AFS India.

Under guidance of Dr. Sumer Singh, Board Member of AFS India , the meet was hosted by Strawberry Fields High School, Chandigarh and facilitated by AFS India Staff along with Dr. Sumer Singh. The successful event had 21 principals/heads and representatives from 15 schools. AFS Think Tank was also introduced during the meet.

New Zealand Teacher Exchange Program In September, 2016, Sarita Badhwar from The Daly College, Indore went on New Zealand Teacher Exchange Program. She says, “The students were very cheerful, motivated and well informed. The pedagogy is very different from India. The teachers here are highly professional and conscientious. It is worth emulating them. I was in a wonderful country where there was lots to learn in the field of education. My heartfelt gratitude and thanks to AFS for choosing Christ Church South Intermediate as school for the teacher exchange.” 14


New Delhi Office United Nations

Cluster Office for Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal and Sri Lanka






Group photo

3rd Annual AFS Asia-Pacific International Global Citizenship Education Forum

time to advance the Global Citizenship Education Movement. With the aim of generating awareness on the challenges of Global Competence and Intercultural Learning, the Forum saw the participations of organizations such as the World Bank Group, UNESCO, British Petroleum, Reliance Industries Limited, and the Australian High Commission, and many more.

AFS Intercultural Programs and the AFS Asia-Pacific Initiative (AAI) with the support of UNESCO New Delhi Office organized 3rd Annual AFS Asia-Pacific International Global Citizenship Education Forum in New Delhi India from 20-23 April 2017. AFS International President, Daniel Obst; AAI President, Rahiema Bagis-Guerra; and AFS India Board Chair, Angela Roye inaugrated the event.

With the participation from 9 countries, 15 cities in India, AFS India volunteers, AFS partners, Educators from AFS India Partner Schools, hosted students from India and participants from other organizations, the Forum had a wonderful group diversity where sharing of ideas & thoughts provided a greater understanding of Global competence and intercultural learning. The Forum was organized in partnership with the Education World, World Bank Group and The Statesman.

The third GCEd Forum connected educators, intercultural learning practitioners and researchers with employers and corporations plus governments, institutions, policy-makers and others in Asia-Pacific who have a stake in the future of the region and its most precious commodity: its people. It gave them platform to share the learning to live together philosophy while addressing the issues of today’s

Summer Institute for Intercultural Communication SIIC is an opportunity characterize by the intensity of learning experience, relevance to one’s professional development with an emphasis on knowledge & skill. The atmosphere is supportive and respectful in which collaborative learning takes place. It is a global inclusive village where cultural differences are appreciated. Sarita Badhwar, Volunteer of AFS Indore chapter attended SIIC in Portland. She says, “I was fortunate to attend five day concurrent workshop in July, 2017. The workshop was on Training Design for Intercultural Learning facilitated by Dr. Janet Bennett and Dr. Michael Paige. The workshop focused on designing teaching across cultures as well as teaching about cultures. It was comprehensive overview of intercultural training design with an emphasis on using developmental approaches to reduce learner’s resistance and enhance learning.”

Group photo



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AFS-AAI ICL & OD Responsible Regional Meeting A regional meeting titled AFS-AAI ICL & OD Responsibles Regional was organized in India from 23rd-24th April 2017 where trainers from AFS International, Hazar Yildirim and Marika Strauss, trained 9 participants from various countries. During the 2-days retreat, these topics were covered such as Volunteer Journey, Building Collaborative Relationship Session on

World CafĂŠ, Student and Host Family Journey etc. The Retreat aimed to provide insights to the participants as to how these methodologies can be applied in their own organization which would lead to improvement and enhancement of both Organizational Development and Intercultural Learning areas.

AFS-AAI Leadership Development Program AFS-AAI Leadership Development Program was facilitated by Lucas Welter from AFS International. The training took place in Delhi from 22nd to 24th April, 2017. Prior to the program, each participant had to attend a preparatory online course which became the base for the training. The leadership program focused on creating leaders to address the challenges faced among volunteers while taking the leadership roles during their time with AFS. During the program, various approaches to local leadership was discussed with creation of solid and sustainable framework


I want to say thank you from the bottom of my heart to AFS India for giving this such a wonderful opportunity of learning. In that training I learnt the main four aspects of leadership. I also leant how leadership can impact any organization. It has helped me to identify my inner hidden leadership skills. - Indian Participant, Leadership Development Program

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Orientations & Training AFS orientation sessions (before, during and after AFS program) helps AFS participants navigate personal and cultural growth opportunities while you’re abroad. Throughout the year, AFS India facilitated various orientations for AFS participants going abroad from India & AFS Hosted Participants from various parts of the world.


AFS is committed to providing intercultural learning experiences that help people become agents of positive change in the world. In support of this mission, AFS has created 16 educational objectives, each focused on different aspects of personal, interpersonal and community development. These goals serve as the backbone for AFS exchange programs, and help participants develop the knowledge and skills that are necessary to succeed in an increasingly globalized workforce. AFS Volunteers help participants to achieve the educational goals of AFS through mandatory orientation that take place during key points in the exchange experience. Throughout the year of 2016-17, AFS India conducted various orientations as mentioned below: Pre-Departure Orientation

During pre-departure orientation, Indian participants share their concerns about the challenges they may be facing while adjusting to their new surroundings, and to hear the stories of other exchange students going through similar experiences.

Gateway Orientation

Gateway orientation begins with the overview of the Pre-Departure Orientation, preparing the participants finally before departure to the host country.

Re-Entry Orientation

Re-Entry orientation sessions mainly focused on reverse cultural shock and the tips for re- adjustment in the school and society after Indian participants come back to India.

Activity during orientation

National Arrival Orientation

This orientation provides participants a chance to meet with others from around the world who are hosted in India while providing an introduction to essential program information, tips of adjustment and knowledge about intercultural learning.

Mid-Stay Orientation

Orientation is intended to be both a look back at the students’ exchange so far and to think about how to grab the maximum benefit from the remainder of the exchange.

End-of-Stay Orientation

This orientation provides participants a chance to reflect on the experiences of being on exchange program. During the orientation, they focus on reverse cultural shock, re-adjustment and getting back to their country.

Host Family Orientation at Local Level

The Host Family Orientation is an important step to prepare a family for the experience of hosting an AFS participant in their home. They are told about process of hosting, rules, adjustment process & introduced to intercultural learning world.

Level W Intercultural Learning Training | What Every AFSer Should Know about Intercultural Learning

Level W offers participants the opportunity to share an intercultural encounter that they have experienced in the past and reflect on ways in which intercultural learning could have helped them in that situation. They will also explore with which cultural groups they identify, including some of the stereotypes and assumptions about those groups. 17


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11th Annual Volunteer Meet 2016 The 11th Annual Volunteers Meet (AVM) 2016 was sparkled with AFS India volunteers from different backgrounds of the cultural states of India from Sep 23rd to 26th, 2016 with more than 100 volunteers from 20 plus chapters. For the first time, it was also marked with the presence of one member of host families from various chapters, who are currently hosting yearlong program participants. The 11th AVM 2016 was unique as it gave the presence of International participants from Honduras and Hungary. Throughout the 4 days of AVM, different track sessions were facilitated and conducted such as ICL Level W Training for Host Families, Volunteer Development Training & AFS Educational Goals for Educators on the initial 1st day of the AVM. The 2nd following day was also bifurcated into parallel tracks with sessions such as Leadership Training, EFIL – Peace Education, NonTraditional Destinations & Programs, Understanding AFS Brand, Educational Session by USIEF and EFIL – Peace Education. The last day of the AVM was glittered with stalls from all the different chapters displaying the various cultures in relevance to the context of their city and state. Finishing on a smile note, the closing ceremony was ended with awards ceremony, which was done to recognize the volunteers for the exemplary work that they have been doing with the organization. It was divided in various categories ranging from school association to volunteer to alumni to AFS students to chapter development.

During Session

The closing day was marked with the presence of J.P Das. Country Exchanges Advisor, Public Affairs Office, US Embassy & Seema Jerath, Principal DLF Public school, Delhi. We’re thankful to them for being the wonderful judges for the AFS Award Ceremony. Altogether, AVM has become an AFS get-together for all the AFS India volunteers’ Pan-India. It was a reason to rejoice the ownership of volunteers taking a step forward in peace building initiative and also a stepping up in unison for accommodating the International host participant into their family membership.

It is quite educative and the arrangements were creative and interactive which kept all our hours active. Learned many things. Take my sincere appreciation.


- Volunteer at Annual Volunteer Meet



AFS gives us the platform to come together and do great things. Working together with volunteers of different mind-set is a learning experience for me. - Volunteer

Global Youth Service Day This year for Global Youth Service Day, the new theme was Ecology: Caring For the Planet, where volunteers were asked to strategize plans to work towards saving the planet.

AFS India Day Celebrations

Tree Plantation done by Ahmedabad, Anand, Chennai & Bangalore

After the grand community service which all the chapters participated in April on the occasion of Global Youth Service Day 2016, AFS India volunteers & hosted students planned and participated in AFS India Day Celebrations from November 5th till 13th, 2016 to commemorate the birthday of AFS India.

Focused on Educating on Environmental Values by Jodhpur & Vadodara and Water Conservation by Mumbai,

For this celebrations, chapters participated in themebased community service: Support Your Elders. Each chapter came up with their own way of celebrating the AFS India Day by engaging with elderly people. They sang songs; played music; taught them Yoga & meditation; donated blankets & food; took them on city tour; organized workshop to teach them about technology etc.

Cleaning Initiative by Jamshedpur, Varanasi & Nashik

We’re thankful to all the volunteers & hosted students to participate in the celebrations. Special shout-out to hosted students and their families for joining the celebrations. Thanks to all the NGO & institutions for associating with the chapters and giving us the opportunity to work on the wonderful cause.

Delhi donated flower pots

Srinagar took initiative on Paper Recycling


VOLUNTEER selected for this opportunity. Swetabh is placed in Bangalore while Akash is doing his fellowship in Delhi.

Alumni Engagement YES Regional Advocacy Workshop AFS USA conducted YES Regional Advocacy Workshop in Manila, Philippines from 22-26 August 2016. The workshop equipped the participants with the necessary skills needed to initiate advocacy campaigns in their own countries. The workshop was attended by 40 YES alumni from nine countries, including Indonesia, Pakistan, Kenya, Mozambique, Thailand, Malaysia, Tanzania, Philippines, and India (Manshi Gala from YES’12 batch).

YES Alumni Social Entrepreneur Leadership Workshop YES Alumni Social Entrepreneur Leadership workshop was conducted in Washington DC from 20-26 March 2017. The alumna, Dhruv Thakkar (YES’13) from Gandhinagar represented AFS IND in this changemaker workshop. The aim of the workshop was to provide alumni with social entrepreneur project development and leadership skills to support them as changemakers in their local communities and the world.

Convocation, Bengaluru Cohort

YES FOUNDATION celebrated the incredible passion of youth Changemakers at the YES! i am the CHANGE Awards at Nehru Centre Auditorium, Worli, Mumbai on 09 February 2017.

This Awards Ceremony was organized to felicitate the national winners selected from 1.3 million youth, across 2,500 cities and towns pan-India. Chief Guests, Shaina NC, National Spokesperson, BJP, Piyush Pandey, Executive Chairman and Creative Director, Ogilvy & Mather India and G.M. Rao, Founder Chairman, GMR Group felicitated top films across 4 categories – Student, NGO, Corporate and Open. Our alumni has been awarded under various categories.

YES Alumni Small Grants Under 2017 YES Alumni Small Grants, few YES Alumni submitted their projects. It is great to share that the projects of Chintan Mehta (YES’13) and Akash Kumar (YES’14) have been approved for the grant. Chintan has been selected under individual category for The EduSol Project and Akash under group category for Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) Society. Akash Kumar: Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) (Delhi)

YES FOUNDATION Media for Social Change Fellowship & YES! I am the Change

Akash as the group leader will lead the group to design, develop and carry out training modules and workshops on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for the school children in Delhi which would focus on incorporating sustainable practices in day-to-day lives.

YES Foundation in association with ISDI-WPP School of Communication has introduced this high impact YES FOUNDATION Media for Social Change fellowship program in 3 different cities: Bangalore, Delhi and Mumbai from May-July 2017. The aim is to develop socially conscious youth leadership. High potential youth will be trained by industry leaders followed by an intensive 7-week placement in NGOs. The Fellows will lead well-defined projects to strengthen communication efforts of Non-Profits to maximize their social impact. Swetabh Kumar and Akash Kumar (YES’14) have been

Chintan Mehta: The EduSol Project (Rajkotbased alumni, studying in Bangalore) The EduSol project is designed to educate the middle school students about the emerging field of Renewable Energy with focus on the Solar Energy. The unfamiliarity of Renewable Energy among the school students is the primary target.



Regional Volunteer Exchange Program

Regional Volunteer Exchange Program gives an opportunity to the volunteers to learn about various cultures and traditions of our diverse National Heritage. They get a glimpse of the common lifestyle of people outside their states and also get a chance to be immersed in the traditions and customs of a new place.

India has lot to offer. Thanks to AFS, our youth are learning about diversity of India by having first-hand experiences of different cultures & traditions through regional volunteer exchange programs. - Volunteer

In 2016-17, 3 volunteers went from Gandhinagar to Pune, 2 volunteers from Delhi & Chennai to Vadodara & 1 Volunteer from Vadodara to Chennai.

AFS India Cricket League AFS Cricket League was kick started on National Level Cricket Tournament with the playoff matchers on 11th12th Feb, in all four Host Ports, namely Gandhinagar, Varanasi, Chennai & Mumbai. Across pan India, there were 13 teams’ representations from 14 chapters, which led to six winners from all the 4 Host Ports. The Semi-Final & Final match was hosted by Vadodara on 26th March, 2017, and the winner of AFS India Cricket League is Rajkot team with added players from Kadi and Mumbai, while Anand was the runner-up. The AFS Cricket League playoffs were successful because of the ownership of the responsibilities chosen voluntarily to promote the basic idea of togetherness through this National event. Special thanks to all the chapters for hosting the event matches.

Winning Team

We’d like to thank the five member Cricket Core Committee members namely, Sonal Mehta, Preeti Gohel & Parth Patel from Vadodara; Yashodhan Shende from Pune & Shalin Dave from Anand, for their hard work and dedication.

Core Committee Members



International Volunteer Exchange Program

Mexican Volunteers in Gandhinagar

International Volunteer exchange program is a way of proving an opportunity to our volunteer to represent India and AFS at International level. AFS India has been doing volunteer exchanges since many years with partners such as Turkey, Switzerland Egypt etc. AFS believe it is imperative for our volunteers to feel the Internationalism and Global Connect to be AFS volunteer in true meaning. And, through this platform of share your culture and hospitality, somehow, we hope to achieve our goal. From September 2016 to August 2017, the following exchanges have happened. AFS India Hosted 17 volunteers from countries such as Turkey, Mexico and Indonesia and have sent to countries Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia. Under the Exchange, the volunteer visits an AFS Partner Country, stay there and experience the culture of that country. The volunteer lives with a host family, meet the Local Volunteers, the Host Students, , undertake school visits and conduct presentations, understand the differences between and adapt to a new cultural environment. Interestingly, a wonderful Mexican couple who were in India on Volunteer Exchange, Lupita & Oscar completed their 50 years of married life. Since they were in India, they expressed their willingness to re-marry by Hindu Marriage tradition. Oscar, at the age of 81 and Lupita, at the age of 67, were so delighted to pass through all ceremonies, and Ahmedabad volunteers were astonished to see their energy, commitment & love. A Special thanks to our Chapters, Ahmedabad, Baroda, Bangalore & Gandhinagar for welcoming the International Volunteers and to Srinagar Chapter for Sending volunteers on exchange programs.

Indonesian Volunteers in Bangalore

The people are so nice in India. I’m so grateful that I could meet new people, getting new family there and getting new experience. I visited Schools, shared about my country and the cultures, got lots of information about education in India (which is so helpful for me as English instructor), learned many things as volunteer which is good to our chapter. I’ve never imagined before to get new family from other country, but AFS makes it happen and I’m so thankful for that. I hope I can improve what I’ve get there as volunteer and it may help the new generation to explore the world through AFS programs. - Volunteer Exchange Participant to India



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Facing Forward Together | Presidents’ Meet 2017 Presidents’ Meet took place from 24th-26th Feb’17 in which representatives from 22 cities participated. To see the growth of AFS India over the last one year, facilitators reflected on the last year’s achievements, accomplishments & activities while working on the calendar for 2017 where they committed to the future development.

AFS India staffers took the lead in the Presidents’ meeting as facilitator where they made presentations about processes. Also, update was given on the developments and plan of action was prepared for this year. We also had a session on conflict resolution and transformation.

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A World of Opportunities | AFS Meet 2017

played the role of facilitator in the trainings. AFS Hosting Meet and YES Sending Meet was conducted from 18th-20th May wherein AFS Sending, Sentio and Finance Meet was from 19th-21st May, 2017. This was the first time, training on Sentio and Finance was provided to volunteers at National level. On 20th morning, a training on Volunteer Development was also facilitated that brought all the participants together where sessions on Volunteer Journey, Volunteer Strat Plan, World Café, AFS & You Form, Branding etc. were held.

A World of Opportunities | AFS Meet 2017 was held in New Delhi from the 18th - 21st of May’17 with 59 volunteers participating from Pan-India. It was the first time AFS India organized Process Training back-toback for all departments (AFS Sending, YES Sending, Hosting, Finance & Sentio), and it was received well by all the Chapters. The Meet focused on providing exposure to the various departmental processes as well as sharing of knowledge and best practices with the participants. Staffers from respective departments



Our Leaders in Chapters

Bhavna Machhar Ahmedabad

P. Manivel Anand

Priti Gohel Baroda

Vasudha Tavag Bangalore

Ashish Agarwal Bhopal

Zahra Ramish Delhi

Varsha Parekh Gandhinagar

Sumer Singh Indore

Meenu Raisurana Jamshedpur

Neera Singh Jodhpur

G.R. Ramesh Karikudi

Sangeeta Malik Patiala

Sasmita Mohanty Kolhapur

Kshitija Jujam Pune

Sabita Kotenkar Mumbai

Ketan Pandya Rajkot

G.J. Manohar Chennai

Vallabhbhai M Patel Kadi

Shivaji Shinde Nashik

Karthikeyan Ooty

Balasubramanian Murali Srinagar

Aditya Choudhary Varanasi

Chapters in alphabetical order



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AFS-AAI Regional Partner Meeting Annual meeting of AAI was held in Delhi from 23rd to 24th April, 2017. The AAI meetings was attended by dynamic leaders from 10 partner countries. We also had our special guests from USA - Jorge Castor (National Director, AFS USA) and Daniel Obst (President, AFS International) be part of our meetings.

support its members with diversity. The 2nd day started with motivational talk from Frank Gurrea on Leadership Journey where he shared the attributes a leader should have. Besides the usual topics of discussions Elections for AAI secretariat was conducted. The new AAI secretariat members are: Angela Roye, President; Hector Dimacali & Khalilah Mohd Talha, Vice President; Nina Nasution, Secretary; and Heinrich Moser, Treasurer.

The 2 day meeting focused on interaction between the partners in form of P2P meetings on first day and more operations driven on the 2nd day. The atmosphere created in these meetings promotes participation through a wide range of session types designed to

The day concluded with having award ceremony for our Best volunteers from each country.

The association between AFS India and YES FOUNDATION started because of our AFS Alumni (AFS’09), Nishita Mehta. YES FOUNDATION has given great opportunity to our outstanding alumni so that they get a chance to engage in social causes while being a socially conscious youth leader. YES FOUNDATION is the social development arm of YES BANK, India’s fifth largest private sector bank. Under the visionary guidance of its Chief Mentor, Mr. Rana Kapoor, MD & CEO, YES BANK, the Foundation follows a differentiated approach focusing on stimulating entrepreneurship and innovative use of media initiatives, to bridge gaps and act as a force multiplier towards empowered and equitable India.

Association with YES Foundation


AFS Mission AFS Intercultural Programs is an international, voluntary, non-governmental, non-profit organization that provides intercultural learning opportunities to help people develop the knowledge, skills and understanding needed to create a more just and peaceful world. AFS Values AFS enables people to act as responsible global citizens working for peace and understanding in a diverse world. It acknowledge that peace is a dynamic concept threatened by injustice, inequity, and intolerance. AFS seeks to affirm faith in the dignity and worth of every human being and of all nations and cultures. It encourages respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms without distinction as to race, sex, language, religion or social status. AFS activities are based on our core values of dignity, respect for differences, harmony, sensitivity and tolerance.

Learn more about AFS at Be inspired by our history at Connect with us at:

AFS Intercultural Programs India Anand Bhawan, 12, Hailey Road, New Delhi - 110001 Office:+91-11-42512498/41501672/41540827 |

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