Volunteers make the AFS world go 'round! They are fundamental to the delivery of our AFS programs in our communities. Our network of dedicated volunteers makes AFS unique and enables us to provide a quality program experience. Volunteers ensure that our AFS participants and their families are supported on their programs and in their communities throughout their AFS journey.
AFS-USA believes that appreciating volunteer efforts is important. Volunteer recognition celebrates and acknowledges the important contributions that volunteers make to the organization, and AFS encourages recognizing our volunteers locally, nationally, and internationally.
Along with promoting local volunteer recognition, AFS International and AFS-USA have several different volunteer recognition awards. Here is an overview of our AFS International and AFS-USA National Volunteer Awards.
Established in 1983, the Galatti Award for Outstanding Volunteer Service honors AFS Volunteers whose commitment and dedication to the organization have advanced the mission and goals of AFS. Stephen Galatti was an idealist, a visionary, a trail blazer, and a pragmatist who built and transformed AFS from an organization that transported wounded soldiers into one that now provides cross-cultural experiences in the name of peace.
Stephen Galatti served as the Director General of AFS for more than 28 years, from its beginnings in 1936 until his death in 1964. He built and transformed AFS from a volunteer ambulance service into a worldwide organization that promotes peace and global awareness through intercultural learning experiences. In keeping with Galatti’s vision, AFS places the highest value on its volunteers and recognizes them as the drivers of all AFS programs.
This award honors AFS volunteers whose commitment and exceptional dedication have advanced the mission and goals of AFS at the grass-roots level. It is the most prestigious commendation granted by the AFS International Board of Trustees for our volunteers.
Throughout AFS, volunteerism is key in carrying out the mission of making it possible for individuals to become responsible global citizens as well as active participants in the creation of a more tolerant and peaceful world.
The nomination period for the 2019 Galatti Award was May 15 - June 30, 2019. Look for nominations to open for the 2020 Galatti Award in May 2020. Questions can be directed to email@example.com.
The Volunteer Recognition Committee received several nominations of incredibly qualified volunteers for the 2018 Galatti Award, and Susan Rowley from the One World Area Team was selected by a rigorous, anonymous judging process. Susan's nomination was submitted to AFS International for consideration, and we are proud to announce that Susan was named one of two winners of the 2018 Galatti International Award, bestowed by AFS International. Congratulations, Susan!
Peggy and Art Howe Award
Families are at the heart of AFS. We often see multiple members of a family actively volunteering for the organization and sharing the #AFSeffect. This award, introduced in 2016, honors the outstanding service of AFS volunteer families. Art and Peggy Howe volunteered for AFS for more than six decades, and this award honors them.
Art Howe, a long-time champion of AFS, began as an ambulance driver and later served as AFS President (1965-1972) and as a Life Trustee until his passing in 2014. Peggy Howe served as a local chapter volunteer and as the volunteer coordinator at the AFS headquarters, and she was also a key support and behind-the-scenes facilitator during Art’s tenure as AFS President. Art and Peggy supported and collaborated with each other in their effort to foster diversity and inclusion on numerous occasions.
With this award, we want to honor the families of our volunteers while remembering Peggy and Art Howe, an exceptional couple who remarkably advanced the mission and goals of AFS both within the organization and in society at large.
Though there are many examples of ways that the Howes supported diversity and inclusion, there are many different ways of interpreting diversity and inclusion. Tell us about how your favorite family of AFS Volunteers promotes diversity, inclusion, and the AFS mission.
The nomination period for the 2019 Howe Family Award was May 15 - June 30, 2019. Look for nominations to open for the 2020 Howe Award in May 2020. Questions can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Flight Chaperone Awards
Each year AFS-USA offers volunteers the opportunity to chaperone program participants on international flights to and from the United States. The primary responsibility of the Flight Chaperone is to ensure the safety and wellbeing of participants traveling on international and domestic flights. In addition, Flight Chaperones have the opportunity to travel abroad and to interact with participants and AFS partners while learning about a new country and culture.
The application period for 2020 Flight Chaperone Awards has now closed. Click here to learn more about applying for this award.
Belo Tours Chaperone Awards
Belo Tours is an American travel operator based in Chicago specializing in cultural, educational, and tourist trips for international exchange students. Belo USA Travel has contracted with AFS-USA and other exchange organizations for more than 15 years. Belo USA Travel has designed trips specifically for AFS-USA students that will incorporate our mission and the idea of intercultural education. Belo USA Travel has a great appreciation for the AFS-USA mission and the desire for our students to participate in activities that follow these values. All trips will be chaperoned by AFS-USA volunteers/staff and Belo USA Travel staff.
The application period for 2020 Belo Tours Chaperone Awards has now closed. Click here to learn more about applying for this award.
Emerging Leader Award
The Emerging Leader Award recognizes an individual who shows potential as a future leader within the AFS volunteer structure of chapters or teams. This award is intended to recognize emerging leaders regardless of their age.
The nomination period for the Emerging Leader Award has recently been moved to March 1-April 15, 2020.
Click here to learn more about nominating a volunteer for this award.
Dream Team Award
The Dream Team Award (formerly known as the Tribute Award) recognizes AFS-USA teams for exceptional and outstanding service that benefits AFS-USA volunteers in more than one area of volunteer development and recognition. This year's award will highlight best practices in these areas. Teams will be considered for this award based on their achievements in the areas of local volunteer recognition and appreciation, volunteer inclusion of both experienced and newer volunteers, and team work during the 2018 calendar year. Teams of all sizes are encouraged to apply.
The nomination period for the Dream Team Award has recently been moved to March 1-April 15, 2020.
Click here to learn more about nominating a team for this award.
The Mission Award recognizes an individual who holds, or has held, a leadership role at the chapter, team, regional, or national level and has made a significant impact in that role while advancing the AFS mission.
The nomination period for the Mission Award has recently been moved to March 1-April 15, 2020. The nomination and reference forms will be available here on March 1, 2020.
Click here to learn more about nominating a volunteer for this award.