Since the early 1980’s International House’s Citizen Diplomacy Program has brought thousands of international leaders to Charlotte. With varying areas of professional expertise including banking and finance, energy, healthcare, small business development, arts and culture, entrepreneurship and government, these individuals have aided the expansion of Charlotte’s cultural, educational and economic diversity. Our community has grown and transformed into an internationally diverse region. Through our Citizen Diplomacy Program, community members have become “Citizen Diplomats” helping to shape U.S. foreign relations one handshake at a time. Through our U.S. State Department sponsored international exchanges, our programs have helped local businesses learn how to better compete in a global marketplace and connected local government members to their overseas counterparts, sharing best practices and finding solutions to common challenges.

Global Perspectives

The Citizen Diplomacy Program at International House is pleased to host local and international leaders for a discussion on “Minority Participation in the Democratic Process”. The Panel will include Local Leaders - Matt Comer, MeckPAC Board Chair; Dimple Ajmera, City of Charlotte Councilwoman At-Large; Wendy Mateo-Pascual, principal of Crossways Consulting and Immigrant rights activist and government leaders from Latin America for a comprehensive discussion on a global issue affecting communities all around the world.

For over 30 years International House has brought delegations from around the globe to Charlotte for professional networking and exchange of knowledge. This prestigious US Department of State-run exchange program now boasts over 500 current and former heads of State as alumni. Join us as we examine Minority Participation in the Democratic Process around the world and discuss how communities can empower minorities to be engaged in the electoral process and legislation. Our esteemed panel will include Government Leaders and Activists from both the Charlotte area and Latin American Countries.

RSVP here for what ought to be an engaging and unique panel!

Upcoming Groups

  • January 30-February 5 – RP – NGO Management

    NGO management This project will highlight the role of the non profit sector in U.S. society and the ways that non governmental organizations (NGOs) promote an educated, engaged civil society as a cornerstone of democracy. The project supports the Department's strategic goal of strengthening democratic institutions. Through visits to non profit organizations, professional associations, federal agencies, foundations, and public service organizations, participants will examine the role of NGO management in the United States in such fields as health, education, human rights, the environment, at risk youth, and the arts. Participants will explore innovative non profit management strategies, including strategic planning, use of social media and new technologies, fundraising, board development, and the effective use of volunteers. They will also explore the prevalence of public private partnerships.
  • February 8-12 – RP Africa – Rule of Law and U.S. Judicial System

    Rule of Law and U.S. Judicial System This project examines the U.S. commitment to the promotion of transparency, ethics, and judicial independence in a democracy. Meetings and site visits will highlight the judiciary’s role in preserving democratic practices such as due process, trial by jury, the right to representation and a fair trial, the role of the public defender, the appeals process, judicial appointments/ elections, and governmental accountability. Participants will learn about federal and state judicial systems under the U.S. model of federalism. In examining the workings of an independent judiciary in criminal and civil proceedings, the participants will observe trials and court procedures and assess new technologies in court administration.
  • February 8-12 – MRP – NGO Management

    NGO Management Examine innovative NGO, non profit, public service, and advocacy organization management strategies in the United States; -Explore the diversity of the non profit sector in the United States and the dynamic relationships among business, government, and non governmental organizations; and Review NGO strategies for strengthening leadership, engaging volunteers, using technology and social media, fundraising, and furthering the organization's mission.
  • February 15-20 – RP Europe – Interfaith Dialogue and Religious Freedom

    Interfaith Dialogue and Religious Freedom Religious tolerance, interfaith dialogue, and interfaith action enrich societies and play a significant role in promoting human rights, peace, and understanding. This project will survey the U.S. experience of religious pluralism and efforts to protect the rights of religious minorities. Meetings, site visits, and activities will explore interfaith cooperation in addressing community and social issues, and examine how U.S. religious organizations and academic institutions teach tolerance and cooperation among faith groups. The project will also illustrate challenges to interfaith relations, and demonstrate how religious groups work with state supported programs yet respect the U.S. tradition of separation of religion and state.
  • February 19-27- RP Western Hemisphere- Minority Participation in the Democratic Process

    Minority Participation in the Democratic Process This project will examine locally based initiatives and public private partnerships that engage minority communities and promote inclusive political participation and coalition building in the democratic process. Participants will explore how citizen groups, community and political organizations, and social entrepreneurs across minority groups organize local and regional partnerships and mobilize volunteers for engagement. Participants will also examine examples of collaboration and coalition building among groups that represent the multi cultural roots of American society and other organizations working to combat discrimination. Participants will observe the role of advocacy and inter sectional alliances in promoting inclusive social, educational, civic, and economic advancement. The project will explore how local communities and the media influence the public agenda, including through new technologies that intersect across gender, race, ethnicity, religion, and language. Discussions and site visits will examine resources such as social media and new technologies for advocacy and youth civic engagement, as well as day to day management practices in successful non governmental organizations.

Check out last year's visitors Here

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"Let us think of the International House as the means of developing our abilities. Cause in every participant there's a strong potential and will enough to make positive changes into the world that he belongs to."

- Judge Dany Zeeny Deputy Military Prosecutor Deputy State Commissionaire to the Military Tribunal, Ministry of Defense - Lebanon