In May of 1981, a new non-profit organization was incorporated as the Community College and International Ministry of Charlotte, Inc. (CCIM) and started implementing programs and activities promoting intercultural interaction, cultural awareness, and English Language Acquisition.
This organization was founded by the Charlotte Area Clergy Association as a unique ecumenical ministry dedicated to meeting the needs of the international community in Charlotte.
CCIM created a central location that would serve as a clearinghouse for international information and resources as well as a meeting place for intercultural activities. In 1983, the congregation at St. John’s Baptist Church provided a Victorian house on their campus as the site for this international center.
On November 23, 1985, the nonprofit opened its doors for the first time at 322 Hawthorne Lane. In 1989, the organization changed its name to International House.
Over the past four decades, International House’s priorities have adjusted to mirror the needs of internationals in Charlotte. Throughout the 90s, International House grew its International Visitors Program, prioritizing citizen diplomacy and showcasing international business and its economic benefits. The organization’s educational English and citizenship classes also developed greatly during this time.
In 2002, the international community faced intensified anti-immigrant attitudes, rhetoric, and policies following 9/11. International House confronted these heightened challenges by shifting gears to immigration assistance and founding an immigration law clinic that has grown from one attorney to six dedicated staff members.
10 years later, the organization moved into the Midwood International and Cultural Center, which housed several other non-profits that shared International House’s passion of building bridges between Charlotteans and immigrants and meeting their needs.
As of May of 2023, International House has returned to the Elizabeth neighborhood.
The organization serves over 5,000 individuals a year through legal assistance, educational programs, diplomacy programs, cultural clubs, cultural sensitivity training, and community resource navigation.
Visit our blog to learn more about International House’s story.