AFS Theory of Change
Provide young people with immersive international or intercultural experiences.
Support them with structured and facilitated intercultural learning journeys that lead to global competence.
Give them real-world social impact and changemaking exposure through training, activities and projects.
= Active Global Citizen
Have the essential global skills they need to live, learn, work and volunteer to contribute to society and change the world.
CREATE A MORE JUST AND PEACEFUL WORLD
What we do
AFS prepares and activates future leaders, global citizens and changemakers with essential 21stcentury intercultural skills to engage, lead and collaborate effectively in different cultural settings. Our international exchange, study abroad and volunteer programs are supported by research-based intercultural learning journeys facilitated by trained AFS volunteers and staff.
From High School Study Abroad, Language Learning, Volunteer Abroad, Gap Year Opportunities, Adult Study Abroad, Internships Abroad, Teacher Exchanges and Summer/ Short-term Study Abroad we are a pioneer on Intercultural Education.
Hosting an AFS student is a rewarding and meaningful intercultural learning adventure for the entire family—sharing cultures, traditions and gaining new perspectives.
AFS local volunteers are the driving force of AFS programs and active at all levels—supporting students and families through their AFS intercultural journeys, participating in governance and policy development and leading social impact projects with local schools and communities.
Intercultural Learning and Global Citizenship Education
We help people of all ages and backgrounds develop leadership, problem-solving, language and intercultural skills needed to succeed in a global economy and make a positive difference in the world.
What we believe in
By linking our “learning to live together” philosophy to the defining global issues facing humanity, AFS fosters intercultural understanding as a powerful and productive tool for building a more just and peaceful world. The AFS global community embraces differences and believes our world is stronger and more interesting because of them.
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 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.
Keeping our AFS Participants Safe
AFS around the world is committed to protecting the safety of AFS participants. AFS believes that it is always unacceptable for any person to experience abuse of any kind and makes all reasonable efforts to safeguard the welfare and minimize the risk of abuse of all people participating in AFS programs. Staff and volunteers of AFS around the world who become aware of an actual or potential situation of abuse or harm have a duty to promptly address the situation according to AFS policy. They also have a duty report the situation to the local authorities in accordance with local law requirements and any applicable national or local policies and procedures.
AFS Intercultural Programs began as the American Ambulance Field Service, a volunteer ambulance corps created in April 1915 by A. Piatt Andrew. Learn about how AFS was transformed from a wartime humanitarian aid organization into a groundbreaking international secondary school exchange, volunteer, and intercultural learning organization in our timeline!
Partners and Sponsors