Amigo Friendship Volunteers
Our International Friendship Program matches an international student with a local volunteer in the community for friendship and sharing of cultures. Your support can help them in their adjustment to American life, language and culture, as well as enrich your understanding of the world.
Ways to Volunteer:
1. Meet a student for a one time "Coffee-Break." Offer to meet a student for coffee or lunch near their campus.
2. A Short-term Intensive - Some students or scholars come to Atlanta for six-weeks to a semester.
Be their friend while they are here.
3. A Year-Long Friendship - Meet 2-3 times over the academic year for a meal near their campus, invite them to your home, join AMIS events, or plan outings around the city. Keep in touch monthly by text, email or phone. Of course, you may continue your friendship beyond the program and many friendships have lasted for years!
4. Join our Events - Anyone can volunteer as a friend at any AMIS event. Just sign up on our Events page.
About AMIS International Students:
The largest number of our students come from Georgia Tech, followed by Georgia State and Emory, but we also get students from Agnes Scott, Oglethorpe, Beulah Heights, Spelman, KSU, SCAD, and others. Last year, we had 90 countries represented among the 520 students we served, and the largest numbers came from India, Pakistan, China, Nigeria and South Korea. Recently 40% of our students are coming from India. Read this article to learn how diverse they can be.
Amigo Volunteer Process:
Fill out the online volunteer form. We want to get to know a little about you and your interests which will help us to match with an international student friend. You can indicate the types of volunteer opportunities you are interested in through this form. We also ask for 2 references who will be emailed a quick question about your suitability for volunteering.
Agree to a secure background check (the link will be emailed to you). Background checks are required once every 5 years. To read AMIS Atlanta Background Check Policy, click here. The background check helps assure the International Student and Scholar offices at the universities we partner with and the international students that our volunteers have cleared a basic background check.
Read our Volunteer Guide and schedule a 20 minute Zoom interview with Jill Parker, our Amigo Director. Jill will get to know you, explain the Amigo program expectations, answer any questions, and talk about your volunteer interests.
Sign up and join a Amigo Volunteer Orientation via Zoom. This is now mandatory for all new Amigo volunteers. Jill will invite you to the next scheduled virtual orientation.
After you are matched, you will receive an email introducing you to your new Amigo international student friend. Please reach out to.your new friend to arrange your first meeting within a week.
Reach out to Jill Parker at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
Above all, I love getting to know my Amigos. Everyone has different stories, and I've learned so much about different cultures, adjusting to the States, and how to be empathetic. I've appreciated the opportunity to make friends along the way!
The Amigo program is an opportunity for the students to have conversation and shared experiences with an American and the opportunity for we Americans to learn about other people, countries, and cultures.
Susie Davidson, Volunteer