Staff Member Spotlight: Chelsea Frisbee

Title
VFP International Placement Coordinator

Photos

Tell us a little about VFP and your role at the company.

This year VFP is celebrating its 30th anniversary! We place American volunteers overseas in short-term and long-term volunteer projects around the world and also host international volunteers in the US every summer. Our projects build leadership skills, teach effective communication strategies and allow volunteers and communities to expand their global perspective and cultural understanding.

I’ve worked here since December 2010 as the International Placement Coordinator, helping American volunteers plan their overseas experience.

How did you get involved in the volunteer industry?

I’ve always loved traveling and feel my experiences abroad have helped shape who I am today. I wanted to be involved in making those life-changing opportunities available for others!

What makes VFP unique?

VFP is a small organization with a large scope. To start the process, you’ll get a personal interaction and experience with VFP office staff. Internationally, you’ll work with our partner organizations based in each country who know the language, culture and regions where you’ll be volunteering. We try to keep our projects affordable because we know the value of volunteerism and want volunteers of all income levels to be able to participate!

In your experience, what characteristics make a good international volunteer?

Having an open mind, taking personal responsibility for one’s experience, being flexible and caring.

How do you ensure your programs are sustainable and mutually beneficial for you, the community, and the volunteers?

We are part of three different international networks of similar organizations – the Coordinating Committee for International Voluntary Service (CCIVS) at UNESCO, Service Civil International, and the Alliance European Voluntary Service Organizations. These networks have protocol in place that ensure all organizations are monitoring programs to be sustainable and have a positive effect for all involved.