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THE FRIENDSHIP FORCE OF OTTAWA On being a good ambassador…. .
“If you reject the food, ignore the customs, fear the religion and avoid the people, you might better stay at home. - James A. Michener
Prepare for your visit • Some Do’s • Some Don’ts • What to do if things go wrong
A Good Ambassador • Is flexible and sensitive • Understands the other point of view • Listens as well as talks • Accepts another culture • Is gracious and appreciative • Remembers to leave a ‘thank you’ note when leaving. “Be yourself – but your best self”
PREPARE FOR YOUR VISIT • Buy nice gifts for your hosts – remember that they will take care of you for a week! • Also take along a variety of gifts for day hosts, dinner hosts and children etc. • Do some homework – learn something of the culture and language of your host’s country. • Prepare a small photograph album so that you can show your hosts something of your life and family.
DO’S • Fit in with the program and your host’s plans. • Show interest in everything you do and see • Be punctual • Be sensitive to any of your host’s cultural or religious observances. • Remember that at all times you represent your country, Ottawa and Friendship Force. • Be willing to try the cuisine and experience the customs
MORE DO’S • Make sure you are educated about Canada • Be sensitive to your host’s financial situation • Take your host out to a meal at least once • Offer to fill the fuel tank if you have been driven around extensively. • Be a good guest – help where possible. • Above all, maintain a healthy sense of humour!!!
DON’Ts • As always, don’t argue religion or politics • Don’t ask to be driven around for your own convenience – take public transport • Don’t travel with your own ‘agenda’ • Don’t be a “loud mouth” • Don’t make constant comparisons – comment only in positive terms • Don’t use the telephone without arrangement with your host. • Don’t take advantage of your host’s hospitality
WHAT TO DO IF THINGS GO WRONG!! Illness: communicate with your host & Journey Coordinator who will help, or arrange for you to see a doctor. Don’t wait till problem escalates. Problem Hosting Situation: discuss with host anything which can be solved by minor adjustments. Otherwise discreetly and quietly bring situation to attention of your Journey Coordinator. There are few problems that cannot be resolved with a little diplomacy. Above all, don’t let your actions cause irreparable harm to Friendship Force. “Today’s crisis may be tomorrow’s anecdote” MOST THINGS ARE WORKABLE FOR ONE WEEK
Important Contacts • Travel. gc. ca (register your travel, obtain immunization info, embassy/consulate locations, travel advisories) • [email protected] gc. ca or call collect (1 -613 -996 -8885) to locate family at home or abroad in an emergency
REMEMBER……. Faces, not places
Adapted from FF Adelaide, Australia 2014