FAQs

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

  • What is the mission of Friendship Force International?

  • ANSWER: To promote global understanding across the barriers that separate people. Our slogan is “Experience different views. Discover common ground.” We explore countries and cultures through home visits, called Journeys. Participants who are traveling are called "Journey" Ambassadors. Read all about FFI at their website: thefriendshipforce.org.

  • How do I go about traveling with FFGO?

  • ANSWER: If you are a member of FFGO, you have the opportunity to apply to travel on any of our domestic or international journeys. We typically have one international outgoing and one incoming journey assigned to us each year by Friendship Force International, our non-profit parent organization based in Atlanta, Georgia. In addition, you can apply to join any of the journeys with openings offered by many other clubs throughout the world. Openings are listed in the “World of Friends” catalog emailed to members every month. There are over 360 chapters in 60 countries. So there are many opportunities to travel.

  • Do you plan visits to clubs in the United States?

  • ANSWER: Most formal journeys assigned to FFGO are with clubs in other countries. However, clubs can arrange “Domestic Journeys” with other clubs in the United States. There are over 100 clubs in the U.S. You will find a list of all our previous domestic and international journeys on this website.

  • Do you travel to the host country as a group?

  • ANSWER: Yes and no. The group usually consists of 20 to 25 individuals, known as “Ambassadors.” Travel arrangements vary with some members making their own airline reservations and some people traveling together. We usually meet in the airport or at a specific location in the host city at a definite time. We are often met at the airport by our hosts who transport us to their home. Some ambassadors may arrange private travel tours before or after the journey. And many times, the Journey Director puts together a private tour of the host country to be enjoyed after the journey.

  • What are my responsibilities when I travel as an ambassador with FFGO?

  • ANSWER: You will be a guest in someone’s home for the duration of the journey. So you should be sensitive to other standards of living and tolerant of religious, political or cultural differences.   If you are traveling to another country, it is likely that someone in the household will speak English. If there are no English speakers, the host club provides translators for your excursions and dinners out. You are expected to participate in all the group activities planned by the host club. If you want to see local attractions that are not on the itinerary, then it is best for you to arrange to do those things on your own either before or after the journey.

  • 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 many ways. When we have an Incoming Journey, you might consider being a home host, a day host, a driver, or a small group dinner host. Throughout the year, you can simply attend social activities to build friendships with fellow club members who have an interest in the goals of Friendship Force International.

  • What do you mean by the term “home host?

  • ANSWER: Home hosts are able to learn about another culture without ever having to travel. You agree to house one or more ambassadors in your home for the week. You will arrange for your guests to participate in all the pre-arranged activities for the journey. You do not have to plan these activities. They are coordinated by the Journey Director. These visits typically last around 7 days. There is usually a free day to share your special interests and places with your guest.

  • 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 journey is in session. Involve your guest in the activities of your family. Participate in all official functions that are planned and attend all scheduled pre-journey workshops. If you have an obligation during the journey, inform the Journey Director and a “driver” will be appointed to accompany/entertain your guest on your busy day.

  • 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 beds available play a part in matching hosts and ambassadors (guests) as do interests, occupations, and ages.

  • 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 email access. It is important to contact your host/ambassador by email, letter, or phone as soon as possible. For many, friendships, communications, and private visits continue for years and even a lifetime.

  • What would be expected of me if I volunteer to be a “small group dinner host?”

  • ANSWER: You would have the opportunity to host one or more of the visiting ambassadors, along with their local home hosts, at an informal dinner in your home. The idea is to share the culture of your guests and give them the opportunity to visit another home in the Orlando area. This also gives the home host a rest from cooking and entertaining. The evening will be specified by the Journey Committee. You may invite additional guests to join in the fun.

  • How do I find out what is happening in the club?

  • ANSWER: Attend our general meetings every other month. A schedule is on our website on the Calendar and the News/Events pages. You will also receive periodic newsletters and frequent emails about activities, new member orientations, and journeys. For FFI news, check their website at thefriendshipforce.org.

  • What types of Social Activities does the club have?

  • ANSWER: Many of our activities revolve around the journeys. You are invited to attend any of them. You can participate by attending or bringing a dish to the Welcome Party or Farewell Party. You can come to one of the Pre-Exchange workshops in which the Journey Director prepares our members in the protocols for that particular country or culture. Our club schedules orientations and new-member coffees.  The “Taste Travelers” dining group meets several times a year at different ethnic restaurants. “Getting to Know You” dinners are held in members’ homes. We arrange visits to cultural centers to learn about people in our community with different backgrounds. Every January, we host a party to celebrate how much fun we have had during the previous year.

 

  • What is involved in becoming a member of the Friendship Force of Greater Orlando?

  • ANSWER:  Join FFGO! 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 cultures and ways of life. Download, print, fill out and submit the Member Application form on the Membership page of this website, or contact our membership chair at: ffgomail@gmail.com.