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International Student Ministry

International Student Ministry

Did you know…More than 75% of all international students at VCU never enter an American home during their stay in Richmond?

Did you know…That there are many ways that YOU can volunteer to show hospitality to these students?

YOU can make a difference in the world right here in Richmond, Virginia! Richmond’s First Baptist Church is seeking to be a good neighbor in a great neighborhood. Just a few blocks away from our church is Virginia Commonwealth University. Students attend VCU from all over the world.

The Global Education Office at Virginia Commonwealth University offers our church and the larger community the chance to befriend international students studying at VCU. Coming to the United States can be a difficult and lonely time for international students as they adjust to a new culture and language while being away from family and friends. Hospitality and kindness from people like you can help international students have a positive experience away from home.

If you would like information on how to be placed in a program or how to volunteer with international students at VCU, please contact Pam Haney at (804) 828-0808 or visit the office at 817 W. Franklin St.

Become an American Volunteer!

Open to individuals and families, the volunteer program provides several options to suit the needs of the student and the host. For more information about our ministry to international students at First Baptist Church, contact Ralph Starling at (804) 358-5458, x134.

Internationals at River Baptism

Ways to Volunteer

Conversation Partner ~ For one semester, an international student meets for one hour each week with an American volunteer to practice his/her English speaking skills. No foreign language or tutoring skills are required.

Friendship Families ~ A student and single individual/family are matched for the school year. Frequency of contact may vary, but in most cases the student will visit the individual/family once a month. This is a casual time and may include dinner in the volunteer’s home or an outing together. Phone contact between visits is encouraged.

Host Family ~ The student lives with the host family for 8 to 16 weeks, while acclimating to this new environment. Expenses for room and board will be paid by the student and they will provide their own transportation. Entry points for new students in the English Language Program are in January, March, June, August and October. Academic students begin their studies in either August or January.

Holiday Visit ~ A student is invited into a home in order to experience a typical American holiday such as Thanksgiving, Christmas or July 4th. This activity is more comfortable if two students join the festivities together.

International Coffee Hour ~ Students, staff and community visitors gather weekly for a time of socializing and refreshments. It is a time for students to meet and develop friendships with classmates and Americans in a casual setting. Everyone is welcome at this weekly event.

Social Gatherings for International Students Hosted by Richmond’s First Baptist Church

  • Karaoke Night/p>

  • IIce Cream at Sweet Frog

  • Shopping at Short Pump Town Centero:p>

  • Virginia Museum

  • Dinner & Movie Night

  • Flying Squirrels Baseball

  • Picnic at Maymont Park

  • Richmond Zoo

  • Dinner in an American home

  • Monument Avenue Easter Parade

  • Backyard Cookouts

  • Tubing down the James River

  • LLewis Ginter Botanical Gardens

Adventure Trips

  • Washington, D.C.
  • Virginia Beach
  • Monticello
  • Busch Gardens
  • San Francisco
  • New York City

 

 
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