UNESCO recognizes AFS as an official partner

“There is a clear relevance of AFS’ work to the current programs and activities of UNESCO, particularly in the fields of education, youth, and intercultural dialogue. Indeed, cooperation between UNESCO and AFS has a solid foundation based on many areas of common interest, synergies and previous collaborations.”  

—Irina Bokova, Director General, UNESCO

AFS achieved a major milestone in April 2015 when the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) announced its official partnership with the 100-year-old nonprofit organization.

Specifically, AFS was granted “consultative status,” which enables both organizations to collaborate on initiatives of mutual interest and social good.

In 2015, three AFS Network Organizations sponsored events under UNESCO’s patronage:

AFS Costa Rica hosted the Regional Forum for Intercultural Learning and Global Citizenship in June 2015. Participants of the event concluded that intercultural learning is a transformative tool to increase global citizenship in Latin American communities. AFS organizations from the Caribbean region cooperated with the Costa Rican Ministry of Public Education and Ministry of Culture and Youth, and the Inter-American Institute for Human Rights to organize the Forum.

AFS Belgium French conducted a seminar, Bouge ta Culture, in October 2015 in Namur, Belgium to help educators facilitate intercultural learning in schools. The seminar was also supported by Fédération Wallonie-Bruxelles (FWB), the Confederation of Youth (COJ) and the European Federation for Intercultural Learning (EFIL), the umbrella organization for AFS Network Organizations in Europe.

Participants in the AFS Philippines YES Alumni Assembly 2015 attended a workshop in August on Global Citizenship Education given by the UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines.