World Affairs Council Celebrates Kitchen Table Diplomacy
In honor of the 15th anniversary of the International Visitors Program in NH, Council launches cookbook featuring recipes from around the world; NH Food Bank chefs will demonstrate recipes at special event on Tuesday, December 12 in Manchester
MANCHESTER- After 15 years as part of the U.S. State Department’s premiere professional exchange program, the World Affairs Council of New Hampshire has hosted more than 2,200 emerging international leaders from 175 different countries. Now, the Council is launching an international cookbook to celebrate the volunteers who host the visitors for dinner in the Granite State and encourage new citizen diplomats to join the cross-cultural dialogue.
“’Food Diplomacy’ is one of the best ways for people to learn about other cultures,” said Tim Horgan, World Affairs Council Associate Director, who has managed the International Visitors Leadership Program in Manchester for the past 8 years. “From the spicy chilies of Central America to the flavorful Masalas of Southern Asia, food can provide an entryway to experience new countries and cultures.”
“Sharing a meal provides even more opportunities to connect with people from around the world and opens the door to true cultural exchanges. The World Affairs Council of New Hampshire, through this cookbook, hopes to continue to open these pathways for local families to learn about the diversity of the world, from the comfort of their own home.”
The Council will hold a launch party for the “Kitchen Table Diplomacy” cookbook on Tuesday, December 12 at the NH Food Bank. Chefs from the food bank’s culinary job training program will demonstrate a few of the international recipes and tickets include a copy of the cookbook. For more information, visit www.wacnh.org/eventcalendar or call 603.314.79070.
“The support of our many volunteer dinner hosts is changing minds from around the world and has a direct impact on building relationships between countries,” Horgan said. “Without a doubt, their efforts are helping make the world smaller and friendlier and we look forward to bringing new volunteers into the program!”
The World Affairs Council of New Hampshire is one of more than 90 community organizations around the country that host visitors through the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs International Visitors Leadership Program- the department's premier professional exchange program.
This program brings approximately 4,000 foreign leaders and specialists to the United States for short-term (one to three week) professional programs. Participants in the national program, who are leaders and decision-makers in their home countries; travel as individuals or as part of pre-arranged groups.
Some of the groups are fully funded by the U.S. Congress through its appropriation to the U.S. Department of State, while others receive little or no financial support from U.S. government. The national program constitutes a major component of this country's public diplomacy efforts to foster mutual understanding and cooperation between the United States and other countries.
Through a long-standing public-private sector partnership, the U.S. Government works with national private, nonprofit organizations and a network of volunteer-based organizations that are members of Global Ties U.S., a nonprofit organization established in 1961. Together, these organizations design and implement quality, experiential programs for distinguished International Visitors. Through its grassroots network, the National program involves over 80,000 volunteers each year as citizen diplomats who develop enduring international linkages.