Programs - Volunteers

All new volunteers must complete a Volunteer Application Form (VAF) prior to participating in our programs. This is a one-time only requirement which will apply to all future participation.  If you are not currently an MFIS volunteer, please complete the online application.

Madison Friends of International Students (MFIS) affirms that ALL international students, scholars, and their families, regardless of
religion, nationality, or any other identity, are welcome here in Madison. We are dedicated to making the Madison community one that is
safe and welcoming for all. MFIS cannot do its work without volunteers who are an integral part of the MFIS mission. Because safety,
well-being and positive experience of students are our paramount priority, being an MFIS volunteer is a privilege. MFIS has a right to
dismiss volunteers, for reasons such as lack of sharing MFIS values, not following assigned duties or expectations, being disruptive,
and/or becoming a cause of negative impact on the students’ experience or the program in general.

Update your contact information here.

Following is a summary of the programs MFIS provides to international students and scholars, and how volunteers can participate.

Capitol Reception
Capitol Reception is held in January or February at the State Capitol to welcome new students arriving for the spring semester.  Students enjoy meeting other students and community members, snacks, an address by a state legislator and a tour of the Capitol building.  Learn more…

Global Friends
The Global Friends program pairs a local resident with an international student or scholar for a semester. The interaction is informal and guided by the participants.  Learn more…

English Classes
We offer classes to international students, scholars and their families that emphasize conversation and include practical help for everyday life in Madison. Volunteers who have an ESL or teaching background lead the classes.  Learn more…

Temporary Homestay
Temporary Homestay is a program where international students stay in the homes of local volunteers for up to three nights when they first arrive in Madison. It’s a wonderful opportunity to welcome students and to help them get started here.  Learn more…

We collect, store, and distribute gently used furniture to visiting international students when they arrive in Madison to help make their residence feel more like a home. Our volunteers work with students selecting furniture or pick up and deliver furniture.  Learn more…

Thanksgiving Hospitality
Set an extra place or two at your Thanksgiving table and share your holiday food, family and traditions with one or more international students.  Learn more…

Office/Administrative Opportunities
Volunteer opportunities include responding to student and volunteer requests, data entry and various support of MFIS programs and events. You may work remotely or in person at the Red Gym.

Welcome Picnic
We host a picnic in a Madison park shelter in late August or early September to welcome incoming students and scholars. In addition to typical Wisconsin food, students enjoy interaction with local residents and other students, stories about Madison, and UW cheer with Bucky Badger.  Learn more…

Leadership Opportunities
MFIS needs capable and dedicated people who are interested in coordinating/planning the above-listed programs.  If you wish to contribute your talents to MFIS in a program leadership role please contact our volunteers coordinator.  Thanks.

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