How did we Design the Volunteer Engagement System?


Study Tour in AFS Italy

In October 2018 we took partners from the network to Italy to conduct an in-depth study of the Animatori system. We learned about the details of their structure while talking to staff, volunteers, visiting chapters and schools


Co-Creation Team

We developed a team comprised of staff and volunteers from around the network (also attended study tour) to begin designing a system to better engage our volunteers modeled after the Animatori System. The team has spent 12+ months designing the system.


The 2019 Pilot Partners

We identified 11 partners to pilot the implementation of the system based on the initial proposal from the Co-creation team. Throughout 11 months, the partners were supported monthly while also providing us feedback as to how we could continue improving the Volunteer Engagement System.

The Animatori System

  • What is the Animatori Model – A Volunteer Engagement System
  • The Role of the Animatori – Assigned to develop local chapters of Intercultura without dealing with programs directly. Italy has divided into 10 geographic areas with 1 Animatori overseeing each.

Why adopt this system?

Modeled after the Animatori, a system with 23 years of development, the numbers speak for themselves: In 1995, there were 78 chapters with a total of 952 participants. Today there are 157 chapters and 2,928 participants. That’s a 200% growth in exchange participant numbers.

During the study tour in AFS Italy we examine the inner-workings of the Animatori System to develop a network-wide Volunteer Engagement System – paying close attention to how different structural components (school relations and public events) come together.

Minimum Requirements to Implement the System

Ready to begin adopting the Volunteer Engagement System? Find out the minimum requirements in this list.

Discover more about the System:

  1. System Proposal

  2. Volunteer Development Department

  3. Tools to Implement the System