What do you mean by the term “Exchange?”
Answer: An “Exchange” is a visit to or from a club in another part of the world or another state. This involves home hospitality, the heart of a Friendship Force exchange, which provides the opportunity for people of different countries and cultures to connect at a personal level. We refer to it as an “Outbound Exchange” when we visit another club. Often an optional tour of the area follows an exchange. An “Inbound Exchange” occurs when a club visits us. We usually have
one outbound and one inbound exchange per year that are arranged by our
International organization. (Though in 2007 we are hosting three incoming
clubs.) More information is on our Exchanges
Do you travel as a group?
Answer: Yes and no; the group usually consists of 20 to 25 individuals, known as “Ambassadors.” Travel arrangements vary from departing the local airport as a group to some, or all, of the individuals making their own travel arrangements and meeting at the airport in order to depart the U.S. together, or meeting in a specific location in the host city at a definite time. The latter provides the most flexibility, but group travel can contribute to a more rewarding experience. The method of travel is a decision made by the Exchange Director.
What is an “Exchange Director?”
Answer: An Exchange Director” (ED) is an individual who has applied and been approved by the Board of Directors to plan, organize, and lead the Exchange. This is open to anyone who has the desired leadership qualities and can make the commitment of time needed for adequate planning and recruiting of Ambassadors with a 9 to 12 month lead-time. Our club has some great experienced Exchange Directors (ED) who are more than willing to mentor a first time ED. In addition, each year the club conducts a series of Exchange Director Workshops; all interested individuals may participate.
involved in becoming a member of The Friendship Force?
Answer: Join The Friendship Force IF you believe in the goals and mission of the organization; you like the challenge and excitement of new people, places and experiences; you believe that friendship among people of different countries and cultures can make the world more peaceful; and you have a curiosity about the world and enjoy learning about other cultures and ways of life. Contact the Membership Chair; complete the Membership Form and mail with your check
to Brud Kisner.
How do I find out what is happening in the club?
Answer: You will receive a membership packet, and then periodic newsletters and frequent bulletins by mail or e-mail about activities, new members, and exchanges. Check out the local club’s website:
On the international level, go to: www.thefriendshipforce.org
I don’t see myself traveling in the next year or so, should I still join?
Answer: Certainly, Friendship Force is not a travel club; there are many other aspects of involvement. The mission of Friendship Force is building global goodwill through personal friendships. This can be accomplished in other ways. You might consider being a home host, a day host, a small group dinner host, or someone who attends social activities to build friendships with individuals who have an interest in the goals of Friendship Force International.
What do you mean by the term “home host?”
Answer: You agree to share your home for seven days and nights with someone from another country or state. Learn about another culture without leaving home. You will have the opportunity to participate in a number of group/club outings so you won’t have to plan everything for you and your guest. There will still be time to share your special interests and places with your guest. The cost of events, admissions and outside meals
is paid for our visitors by our club, using the fees the visitors have
paid in advance. But as you would host a friend in your home, you
host without compensation for meals at home and transportation in your
Since I am a single woman, would I be matched with another woman?
Answer: Yes, that is usually the situation, while couples normally host another couple. There are exceptions, but it is your decision. Frequently, the number of bedrooms and type of
bed(s) available play a part in matching hosts and ambassadors (guests) as do interests and occupations.
Also, traveling as a single woman is easier when you are with a group
and a family; you are not alone.
Will I have the opportunity to communicate with my host or guest prior to his/her arrival?
Answer: Usually that is the case. It is amazing how many foreign guests and hosts have
Important: As soon as possible, contact your host/ ambassador by
e-mail, letter, or phone. For many, friendships, communications, and private visits continue for years and even a lifetime.
What are the responsibilities of a “home host?”
Answer: A home host invites his/her guest to be a part of the family for the time the exchange is in your community. Involve your guest in the activities of your family. Participate in all official functions that are planned and attend all scheduled workshops. If you have an obligation during the exchange that is of such a nature that you are unable to take your guest, inform the Exchange Director and a “day host” will be arranged to accompany/entertain your guest on your busy day.
Exactly what is a “day host?”
Answer: It is someone who wants to participate in the exchange but, for whatever reason, is unable to home host. This individual volunteers to escort an ambassador for one or more days to a scheduled activity or, if it is a day when no group activity is planned, decides how and where to spend the day with the guest. It would be a good idea to discuss this with the guest so the activity you plan is something of interest to both of you.
What would be expected of me if I volunteer to be a “small group dinner host?”
Answer: You decide how many guests, in addition to the number in your family, you feel comfortable having for dinner on an evening specified by the Exchange Committee. The menu is your choice and generally you provide the main course and arrange for your invited guests to bring a salad, dessert, appetizer, or wine. It is entirely up to you. The evening is for you to plan whether you play a game or just visit. The whole idea is to share the culture of your guest and give them the opportunity to visit another home and meet others. When space allows, members, new and potential members are included as guests. Of course, the guest’s host family accompanies them to your dinner. Sharing, fun, laughter and conversation are the goals for the
Do you plan visits to clubs in the United States?
Answer: Yes, there are 107 clubs in the United States and clubs can arrange what are called “Domestic Exchanges” or “Inter-club Exchanges” with another club where there is a mutual interest in such a visit.
What types of social activities does the club have?
Answer: The club normally meets
once a month all year round on the second Sunday of the month at 5 pm, or brunch
in the winter.
Exceptions are when we are hosting an incoming club; then the social
events associated with that exchange are our meeting for the month. Meetings
feature speakers or parties. (Since most of our
meetings also include a dinner at a restaurant, please let us know you are
coming. Sometimes we need reservations by check in advance.) Topics include places we are visiting or hosting, world
events, cultures of other countries and topics of interest to those who enjoy international culture, travel and friendship.
During the year we typically have a picnic, small group dinners in homes, small group meetings in restaurants, and a holiday party. Other events may be planned as well. We hold business
meetings four times a year and Board meetings once a month.
What should I
expect financially when I go on an Outbound Exchange
On an outbound
exchange, we who are visitors have all or most of our expenses paid by the
host club and their members; we pay for our own transportation to the host
country and a fee to Friendship Force International for the exchange; some
of that fee is paid to the hosting club to entertain us. If there is a
tour following the exchange, you would pay the cost of the tour if you
choose to go. Generally, we take our hosts out to dinner one night while we are their
I required to host or go on Outbound Exchanges if I am a
Answer: There is no requirement by our club for members to host visitors or
go on outbound exchanges. We hope though, that those joining would
want to actively participate in these events, as they are how we can
best learn about people in other cultures. If you cannot host or
travel, you can still day host or participate in other ways.
if I am not able to go or don’t care to go on the Outbound Exchange you
have scheduled? Are there other ways for me to travel with the
Answer: There are a number of other ways to travel. You may travel
with another club from this country if they have room for you. There are
Mission and Discover trips that include people from several countries
where the Ambassadors travel somewhere and stay mostly in hotels but meet
people from that country to interest them in forming Friendship Force
Clubs. Several Festivals are held each year in different parts of the
world where all are welcome to come to stay in a hotel but meet people
from the area; there may or may not be home stays offered after the
Festival. Regional and International Conferences are held each year, and
there are long weekend trips in our area and volunteer opportunities as
well. See the list of exchanges and events on the Exchanges
and Other Clubs
page and the Friendship Force International
much are membership dues?
Dues are for the calendar year. Annual dues are $30 for an individual
member or $35 for a household membership (two or more people at the same
address). Members of other Friendship Force clubs (Secondary Members) may
join the Friendship Force of Dallas for an annual fee of $15. Dues are
payable by December 15th for the following calendar year. Contact the
chairperson for an application form.
the year, dues are prorated for new members:
the club Jan 1
- June 30 shall pay the full amount
the club July 1 - Sept 30 shall pay $15 per individual and $17.50 per household.
the club Oct 1 - Dec 31 shall pay the full amount which will be for the last three months of the
current year and a full membership for the following year.
your club help people in other countries?
Yes. For several years, the Friendship Force of Dallas club has
donated refurbished computers fitted with sound cards to schools for the
blind in Peru, Chile, Romania and Palestine. We call this our
BridgeBuilder Project. The latest computers were donated to Schools
for the Visually Deficient in Brasov, Romania and in Izmir, Turkey. Other supplies for the
blind have been donated in Bogota, Colombia and in Paraguay. The Brasov and Sibiu
clubs visited Dallas in April 2007 and brought back additional computers
to Brasov. See photos on our Computers
to Romania page. Contacts are Bob
Langford or Ed Edgren.
See additional articles about this project and computers for the blind
on our Articles
20. How can I find out more about the international organization?
Information about Friendship Force International is found at the website:
www.friendshipforce.org or www.thefriendshipforce.org.
There is information about the organization, mission, goals, meetings and projects; about the Board
members; about the exchanges available; about how to arrange exchanges, recruit members, and start
or run a club. There is a monthly magazine called Friendship Online available on this website.
For additional information about the Dallas club, contact a board member.
purpose is to be a multi-cultural group that promotes peace and friendship in the world by building global good will through personal friendships and exchanges.
mission is building world understanding through personal friendships.
is to be an outstanding model as a diverse and actively involved Friendship Club representing
Dallas, Texas to the world.