THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL
AAFSW’s longstanding Yahoo group,
, has nearly
5,000 members who use the listserv to discuss family and
children’s issues. AAFSW also has Facebook groups for parents
of special needs children and for parents of children attending
boarding school. The organization has published several books
that include helpful tips on raising children abroad, including
the popular “Realities of Foreign Service Life” series.
AAFSW has a Washington, D.C.-area playgroup for young
children that meets weekly on weekday mornings at parks or
homes of members in the Falls Church/Vienna, Virginia, area.
It offers three annual scholarships for Foreign Service youth,
including current college students. The annual AAFSW Art and
Book Fair at Main State includes a section of children’s books.
For more information, visitwww.aafsw.org.
Dues are $40 per
Foreign Service Institute
Since 1977, the
Foreign Service Institute’s Overseas Brief-
ing Center has compiled information on
foreign and domestic postings for U.S.
government employees and their family members. That effort
includes a growing library of “Kid Vids” depicting life at post
from a child’s perspective; these are submitted by youth age 10
to 18 via an annual contest conducted by OBC in collaboration
with the Foreign Service Youth Foundation.
In 2000, OBC merged with the Career Transition Center
under the umbrella of the Transition Center. FSI/TC offers a
variety of short courses focusing on unique aspects of life in
the Foreign Service. In addition to courses geared toward the
concerns of spouses and partners, it offers three that are open
to children from grades two to 12. Ranging from a half-day to
two days in length, they are: “Going Overseas for Families,”
“Going Overseas: Logistics for Children” and “Young Diplomats
Overseas Preparation.” FSI/TC also has two kid-focused courses
for adults: “Encouraging Resilience in the Foreign Service Child”
and “Raising Bilingual Children.”
For more information, visitwww.state.gov/m/fsi/tc/index.
htm or emailFSITCTraining@state.gov
FLO–Family Liaison Office.
Since 1978, the Family Liaison Office has
worked to improve the quality of life of direct-
hire U.S. government employees and their
families serving overseas by providing advo-
cacy, programs, service and support.
FLO’s Education and Youth Office gives
guidance and makes referrals to assist families in making
informed decisions about their children’s education. They
have information on boarding schools, Washington, D.C.-area
schools, special needs, homeschooling and college prepared-
ness. They also assist Foreign Service families dealing with child
care, gifted and talented resources, allowances, adult education,
summer camps, and transition and re-entry planning.
The Unaccompanied Tours program provides resources to
assist the families of employees serving on an unaccompanied
tour. The program sponsors events—such as a “Stress Resilience
for Kids” webinar—that are open to employees and families at
FLO’s 32-page booklet,
(posted on FLO’s web-
site), contains guidance on transition and re-entry planning for
parents of Foreign Service youth.
For more information, visitwww.state.gov/m/dghr/flo/
the Foreign Service Youth Founda-
tion has helped our young people
embrace the adventure of an internationally mobile childhood
by encouraging resilience and fostering camaraderie. Partici-
pants in FSYF activities make new friends who have also experi-
enced changing environments as they transitioned from post to
post. Adult volunteers, including young adults who grew up in
the Foreign Service, who organize FSYF activities keep alive this
important social safety net.
FSYF’s worldwide programs include: a Foreign Service youth-
Here, There & Everywhere
; a parent newsletter,
Around The World
; four annual contests (art, essay, community
service and KidVid); and two academic merit scholarships for
The foundation has published four books to help Foreign Ser-
vice youth deal with the opportunities and challenges of growing
up overseas (including
The Kids’ Guide to Living Abroad
addition, FSYF’s website links to a variety of resources. See, for
FSYF also organizes numerous events in the Washington,
In addition to courses geared
toward the concerns of
spouses and partners, the
Transition Center offers three
that are open to children.