We need more young people to solve world problems

“There is a real urgency to provide opportunities to all young people to engage with the unfamiliar, appreciate and respect differences, and use the knowledge gained from understanding cultural differences to find and act on solutions for the problems in the world.”

Dr. Vishakha Desai, AFS Board Chair, speaking at the WISE Innovation Summit (Qatar, 2017)

Explore our innovative offerings


AFS Global Competence Certificate

AFS Global Competence Certificate is a blended learning program that develops tangible global skills essential to live, work, and make a real social impact around the world. It is a scalable, flexible, global, easy-to-use, and research-based tool. Explore our suite of products.

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AFS Effect+ Program

AFS Effect+ Program are customizable, interactive workshops that introduce young people to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and how they can work together to help advance these goals in their communities.

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AFS Global Conference

The virtual AFS Global Conference hosted the worldwide launch of the results of the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) Global Competence Assessment and explored their implications for students, educators, policymakers and other education stakeholders (22-23 October 2020).

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AFS Alliances & Partnerships

“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 has official recognition by Ministries of Education in 24 countries


As of 2015, AFS is proud to have entered into a “consultative status” partnership with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). This status enables both organizations to collaborate on initiatives of mutual interest and social good.

AFS works closely and creatively with schools, universities, humanitarian and peace groups, governments and other NGOs on the issues that reflect our mission.

Go to UNESCO's Global Citizenship Education site

AFS Global Citizenship Education Agenda supports

UN Sustainable Development Goal #4

Ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning  

Specifically, Goal #4 focuses on the knowledge and skills needed to promote “sustainable development” and “sustainable lifestyles,” human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contribution to sustainable development.

Learn more about Goal #4

Intercultural education reinforces 21st century education goals

We educate global citizens and the world leaders of tomorrow, and help them to:

Broaden perspectives

about themselves and the world around them

Learn and respect differences

and believe a diverse world is a stronger and more interesting place

Communicate and collaborate across cultures

in a sensitive and mindful way

Appreciate other cultures

and encourage others to be open to new ideas, attitudes and traditions

Build skills to use in STEM and other key areas

by using critical thinking and problem solving activities

Become part of the AFS global community

to build bridges across cultures and bring diverse communities together

Latest education blogs and articles

  1. Screen Shot 2020-11-10 at 4.51.48 PM

    Adapting Cultural Learning to a Virtual Setting

    As colleges and universities around the globe work to adapt to their institution’s needs, the Covid-19 crisis has illuminated some new opportunities. Augsburg University, a renowned cultural and social justice…
  2. Opening-Closing Screens 2

    PISA shows Teacher Attitudes, Activities In- and Outside Classrooms Impact Student Global-mindedness

    In upending education systems worldwide, the COVID-19 pandemic shines a stark light on how necessary it is for young people to be able to navigate interconnected, interdependent realities. The newest…
  3. you-x-ventures-LR5CYw3AQNo-unsplash

    New Suite of AFS Global Competence Programs to Support Higher Ed Institutions, Companies and Students

    At a time when understanding others is more important than ever but social distancing measures remain in place worldwide, AFS Intercultural Programs (AFS) is launching a new suite of programs…
  1. Screen Shot 2020-07-07 at 10.21.37 AM

    Education New Zealand Endorses the AFS Global Competence Certificate

    AFS Intercultural Programs is proud to partner with Education New Zealand (ENZ) to deliver a customized version of the AFS Global Competence Certificate (GCC): an award-winning program that develops tangible…
  2. Síntesis Semana Iberoamericana de la Educación Global

    AFS Holds a Successful Ibero-American Week of Global Education

    Under the theme of: Globalize, Connect, Transform, 6,000 participants from Latin America and Europe met last week to debate the present and future of education.    From June 1 to…
  3. 24623569980_0dc82bfae9_o

    Leveraging Tech for Intercultural Learning

    It’s clear that the pandemic has accelerated the use of technology and online learning for those of us in (international) education far beyond what most had prepared or planned for.…

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