Street Poet Heads to Durban, S. Africa as a Global Xchange Participant

Last week I blogged about Global Xchange’s first-ever multi-lateral volunteer project, including five U.S. volunteers. Starting today, and continuing through the end of winter, Andres Rivera — one of the L.A.-based U.S. volunteers taking part in the Global Xchange project — will be writing about his experiences in Durban, South Africa, and later on in Belfast, Northern Ireland.

Hi everyone!

My name is Andres Rivera. I was born and raised in South Central Los Angeles, California.

With the National Conference for Community and Justice, at the age of 16 years old I began my journey into the working world of social justice. I dedicated myself to social activism and youth development so that generations after me could live with less oppression.

I am a poet and recording/performing artist under the nom de plume of RHIPS (restin’ humbly in poetry and song, a story for another time). Something inside me, like a new born, cried out to be acknowledged, and loved by the world. I started writing as a way to get to know myself better, and the world around me. I began performing as a way to give voice to my words, my upbringing, and my stories of trials and tribulations and triumph.

I began working with Street Poets, Inc. a non-profit poetry-based peace-making organization dedicated to the creative process Continue reading

The UK’s Global Xchange Service Corps Announces its First U.S. Volunteers

The United Kingdom-based Global Xchange recently announced the selection of its first-ever U.S. participants for a volunteer project.

Global Xchange is an innovative, intercultural service exchange opportunity for young people to work together with people of other countries and to develop shared experiences, skill sets, and values.

A partnership between the British Council and the Volunteer Service Organisation (VSO), Global Xchange teams up groups of 18 young people, ages 18-25, usually from the United Kingdom and a partner country — and volunteers split their time during the service term between the United Kingdom and the partner country.

The U.S. participants will be part of the first multilateral group of volunters, with participants from the United Kingdom, Continue reading

British Council Hosts Global Service and Active Citizenship Event Tonight

Jody Olsen, Acting Peace Corps Director

Jody Olsen, Acting Peace Corps Director Photo by Kate Anderson

The British Council will host an event in Washington, D.C., tonight that convenes advocates of citizen service.

Tonight’s event celebrates volunteerism and global citizenship. It will features speakers Rep. Sam Farr (D-CA) — lead sponsor of the Peace Corps Expansion Act of 2009 which is now in the House Foreign Relations Committee. (Read more.) Other featured speakers include Acting Peace Corps Director Jody Olsen, and Professor Mike Hardy, the British Council’s Head of Intercultural Dialogue Programming.

The British Council, which also partners to run Global Xchange, has recently launched the U.S. publication of its book Volunteering: Global Citizenship in Action by Aurelie Brockerhoff and Nick Wadham-Smith which was inspired by the
volunteers’ experiences.

The goal of the event is to bring together pre-eminent U.S. volunteerism and service advocates and to expand the conversation about global action and citizenship.

The British Council is the United Kingdom’s international organization for educational opportunities and cultural relations. Read more about the British Council.

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Citizens Cross Borders to Serve in Diverse Teams with Global Xchange

Global Xchange participantsA partnership between the British Council and the Volunteer Service Organisation (VSO), Global Xchange brings together teams that cross cultures and borders to serve together.

Global Xchange is an innovative, intercultural service exchange opportunity for young people to work together with people of other countries and to develop shared experiences, skill sets, and values.

Every six months, Global Xchange teams up groups of 18 young people, ages 18-25. Nine are from the same overseas partner Continue reading