Over three hundred delegates from 30 countries are expected to land at Manchester Airport for the 40th anniversary World Conference of Friendship Force International (FFI) at the Midland Hotel from August 24 – 28.
Since it began in 1977, FFI has promoted international friendship by setting up home stays around the world to experience how people in other countries live.
Members of the host club, Greater Manchester Friendship Force, have visited Japan, South America, Australia, Turkey, New Zealand, the United States of America and other European countries. So, a highlight of the event will be the reuniting of people from other countries who have met before in their homes.
A Seventies themed welcome party on August 24 will be attended by Suzy Smith Bennett, a former international President, whose father, Dr Wayne Smith with President Jimmy Carter, founded the organisation.
The following day, August 25, TV Presenter and Global Explorer, Benedict Allen who has dwelt with remote tribes, will give a key note speech.
The rest of the time will be spent on interactive workshops and visits to places of interest until the close at 12 noon on August 28.
Hollywood actress, Stefanie Powers, famous for her role in Hart to Hart and a committed wild life protectionist, will speak on the closing day.
On Saturday August 26, there will be a gala dinner under the wings of Concorde followed by music, dancing and an awards ceremony.
Phil Holt, an Air Traffic Controller for 40 years will entertain delegates over coffee with an amusing talk entitled Keep Calm! I’m an Air Traffic Controller.
Jeremi Snook, President and Chief Executive Officer of Friendship Force international in Atlanta, Georgia, said: “Friendship Force’s core home exchange programme has expanded the world view of millions of people. It has helped to overcome the prejudiced, racial and discriminating barriers that separate people, helping to create a more understanding and friendly future.”