Are you interested in experiencing new cultures and making new global relationships?
WTCI designs and implements professional and cultural programming for over 700 visitors annually on behalf of organizations like the U.S Department of State, USAID, and others. As a volunteer at WTCI, there are multiple ways you can engage with our international guests and contribute to helping us achieve the diplomatic goals of this program. Our community is the heart of these programs and drives their success. Person-to-person exchanges are one of the most effective tools of American diplomacy – breaking down barriers and stereotypes, and showing the world all the great things our region has to offer.
We are looking for community members who are interested in engaging with emerging leaders to serve as ‘Cultural Ambassadors’ for our city, state, and country. The experience not only helps show the world all that Baltimore, Maryland and the rest of our region has to offer, but it also is a fantastic way to learn about other countries, expose your family to new cultures, and make lifelong friends. There are a variety of ways to participate listed below.
Hosting a visitor requires a private bedroom and a private or shared bathroom. Visitors will have breakfast in your home and occasional dinners but will be attending professional meetings during the day 6 days a week. Hosts are not asked to do anything special or make special plans, the goal of the program is to engage the visitors in family activities, so they can experience a typical American lifestyle. Living with your family, regardless of your ethnic background, family type, or occupation, gives participants the opportunity to get acquainted the diversity of culture and experience that defines who we are as a nation.
WTCI works to provide the best possible hosts-visitors match. Each participant is vetting by the U.S. State Department and is handpicked by their respective country to participate in the program. Prior to the group’s arrival in the U.S., each homestay host receives information on their guest, the region they are coming from, and cultural tips on hosting a person from the respective country. Homestay hosts meet their guest and all other hosts at a Welcome Reception in WTC-Baltimore. The program ends with a Farewell Reception where all hosts receive recognition for participating, and all visitors receive a Certificate of Achievement for the successful completion of their program. WTCI arranges all transportation and logistics, and any issues that may arise will be handled promptly by an assigned visitor liaison. The first step in learning more about this exciting opportunity is to fill out an application below, or if you have questions contact Leslie@wtci.org.
During most visits, WTCI arranges opportunities for the visitors to get together to share a meal at a community member’s home. This allows the group to come to together in an informal setting to reflect on their experiences while getting another perspective on a typical American household.
To participate you simply need to cook a meal for a group of between 1-15 (depending on group size) people and open you home for an evening to a group of visiting foreign professionals.
Every group that comes to Maryland meets with their professional counterparts in our community. Our ability to deliver this programs is predicated upon our vast network of professional partners. These visits enable visitors to discover the dimensions and context of their professions in Maryland, make lasting contacts with their colleagues here, and share insight about their activities at home.
Most meetings last 90 minutes and take place at your office or at WTCI’s office in the World Trade Center in Baltimore. All we ask is that you explain the work you do, share your expertise and open yourself to a cultural exchange. WTCI arranges for all logistics including any necessary transportation or translation services.
Please fill out the online form below to provide us with more information about your background and interests in engaging with our local program. One of our staff members will be in touch soon to follow up with you about your application.