Open World program hosting

Short-Term Professional Program Hosting

Build connections with professional program hosting

Annually, Global Ties KC welcomes 20–50 professional leaders to Kansas City, seeking homestay placements during their program to provide an enriching cultural immersion. The two primary programs are Open World and Community Connections.

In 1999, Congress authorized the creation of Open World as a Legislative Branch agency. Open World offers bipartisan support to members of Congress in creating cultural exchanges for Eurasian leaders to witness democracy building in action. This is best shown by the emphasis on homestays, where local citizens welcome these visitors into their home for typically 7–9 days.

Community Connections Belarus participants establish professional connections, learn about the advantages and disadvantages of a democratic, free-market economy, and examine practices and experiences that may be adapted back home to address local challenges. This 3 week program fully immerses participants in site visits, hands-on workshops, and host family cultural interactions.

How it Works

How professional program hosting works

Professional programs provide opportunities for leaders to meet their U.S. counterparts through 9am-5pm weekday activities, facilitated by Global Ties KC. This leaves family time open on evenings and weekends. What you do with the open family time is up to you. Whether you choose to cook dinner together, visit your neighbors, or take a walk in the park – we hope you show them your American life.

We ask that hosts provide their guest their own room with a bed bed, breakfast, dinner, and lunch on weekends. 

Fill Out the Get Involved Form Here

Steps to Become a Host:

1. Fill out the interest form, then Global Ties KC will follow-up via email.

2. Household members over 18 fill out a background check form.

3. A Global Ties KC staff member visit you at your home for an in-person meet-and-greet.

4. Hosts attend orientation session and complete a host family profile for Global Ties KC to send to your visitors.

5. Once everything is complete and acceptance has been issued, you receive program & visitor information closer to the start date!

Upcoming Events and Programs


Featured Stories

Global Ties KC reminds me how much I love sharing Kansas City with the world and how many incredible people there are around the globe.  Each time I host or attend a Global Ties KC event I meet new friends and can feel the bias I didn’t even know I had melt away.  It is the same feeling I get when I travel except I get to sleep in my own bed at night. We are incredibly lucky to have Global Ties KC to connect the middle of the map to the rest of the world.

Tracy Hull

Manager Teen Recruitment and Engagement, Girl Scouts of NE Kansas & MW Missiouri

Featured Stories

Hosting students and adult mentors from around the globe has enriched our lives beyond measure. We are so grateful to Global Ties, KC for expanding our world of friendships!

Robin Villa

Homestay host

Featured Stories

Being a youth diplomat with Global Ties KC has been one of the greatest experiences of my life. I’ve met so many encouraging, supportive people who have helped me improve my community and myself. From networking dinners to being taught origami, to meeting students from El Salvador, Global Ties KC has provided me with eye-opening opportunities I would have never had without the Youth Diplomats program. This organization is truly devoted to helping people and teaching them about this world.

Andrew Shelton

Youth Diplomat 2021-2022

Featured Stories

Through my experience with Global Ties KC as a member of the Board of Directors, I’ve been able to see first-hand the incredible impact that the wide range of GTKC programs have, whether facilitating high-level government and industry leaders or working with KC youth to meet their peers across continents . By connecting visitors from around the globe to Kansas Citians, GTKC has made itself a vital part of the citizen-diplomacy effort, allowing our community to proudly represent the best of what our community and country has to offer.

Sujal Shah

Global Ties KC Board Member

Featured Stories

Through my experience as a Global Ties KC Youth Diplomat, I was able to establish meaningful connections and friendships through incredible experiences. I learned so much about leadership and communication that I know I will be able to apply in the future. Thank you Global Ties KC!!

Riley Martin

Youth Diplomat 2020- 2021

Featured Stories

Through my experience as a Global Ties KC Youth Diplomat I was able to retain and learn new cultural experiences, interact with peers that have the same interests, and gain lots of experience.

Yoselyn Banuelos

Youth Diplomat 2021-2022

Featured Stories

Through my experience as a Global Ties KC Youth Diplomat Facilitator, I got to grow my knowledge on what I wanted to find in my career post college. I was trusted in a facilitator role for the Kansas YD program where I found my passion for helping others learn about careers, community building, and find what they are most passionate about. GTKC provided me the space to grow and learn the value community strength can create.

Rose Priebe

Youth Diplomats Institute Facilitator 2021-2022

Featured Stories

Going into the Youth Diplomats Program, I did not fully understand what I was getting myself into. As I progressed in the program, I was equipped with skills and resources not available at school, peers in my age group driven and motivated to make and see change, and leaders who really care. This program increased my interest in global matters, and build my confidence in myself and in my abilities.

Faith Obiesie

Youth Diplomat 2021-2022

Featured Stories

Through my experience as a Global Ties KC Board Member the pain of witnessing environmental  decimation, warring nations, political divisions, and mass murders is lessened when involved in the work GLobal Ties does. Our Youth Diplomat Institute is a rich, rich resource for KC area high school students.  As well, the foreign diplomats, students, educators and other guests who visit KC through the Global Ties International Visitor Leadership Program leave stimulated by new ideas and energies. During these visits, GTKC pours unparalleled resources into the development toolkit of countries’ future leaders. Because the world is smaller and more interconnected than ever, I believe that understanding and respecting cultural, religious or ethnic/racial differences can be the  catalyst for removing obstacles to achieving world peace. Global Ties KC, by being a champion of citizen diplomacy, practices spreading understanding and respect for all.


Shelley McThomas

Global Ties KC Board Member

Featured Stories

Through my time as a Global Ties KC Board Member, I have been able to connect with people across the globe. From hosting for a short stay to having international visitors over for dinner to online exchange programs, I have been able to learn how to be a better world citizen.

Darin Challacombe

Global Ties KC Board Member

Interested in professional program hosting?

Get in touch with us today! Email Sarah with questions or submit an application!


All Programs

Home Hospitality

We provide opportunities for you to host international visitors and entertain global leaders in your home.

Learn more about Global Ties KC Impact

Citizen Exchange Circle

Citizen Exchange Circles are a way to strengthen relationships between international visitors and Americans they encounter while on their exchange program.

Learn more about Global Ties KC Impact

Custom Exchanges

Global Ties KC is uniquely positioned to provide custom international exchanges in the Heartland, through speakers and cultural experiences.

Learn more about Global Ties KC Impact

Student Exchanges

We facilitate multiple youth programs per year that ask for a 1–3 week hosting commitment.

Learn more about Global Ties KC Impact

Professional Exchanges

Learn about the advantages and disadvantages of a democratic, free-market economy, and examine practices and experiences that may be adapted back home to address local challenges.

Learn more about Global Ties KC Impact

Youth Diplomats Institute

The Youth Diplomats Institute is a nine-month (September to May) real world program that equips teens in Kansas and Missouri with the tools necessary for success in a global society.

Learn more about Global Ties KC Impact

Student Explorers

Student Explorers is the at-large group of youth who want first word on cultural opportunities.

Learn more about Global Ties KC Impact


Successful applicants will be invited to work with Global Ties KC and will be expected to take on a significant role with the organization

Learn more about Global Ties KC Impact

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About our Open World Program

Frequently Asked Questions

What are you doing during weekday hours?

Global Ties KC creates an individualized agenda for each program to provide insight into participant professional best practices, based on program content objectives. Through meetings and site visits, participants are obtaining knowledge on how to better serve their communities back home.

Are hosts responsible for medical emergencies?

A Global Ties KC staff member will be on call 24/7 during program. All exchange participants have medical insurance during the program. Hosts are not responsible for co-pay costs. Any non-emergency medical issues will be handled by Global Ties KC, typically during work hours. For evening/weekend emergencies, we will be your first point of contact and work with you to ensure appropriate care.

What are hosts supposed to do with visitors when they aren’t with Global Ties KC?

Whatever you would like! A critical part of this program is that the participants get to immerse themselves in everyday American life. Whether you are a family on the go and take them with you, or you’re a family that stays in for movie nights – we hope visitors walk away feeling like a member of your household. There is no pressure to go above and beyond to keep them entertained 24/7; oftentimes, they appreciate some relaxing after a long program day.

How many visitors can I host?

Each family can take up to two visitors in their household. It has been noted that oftentimes (when possible) hosts have a more impactful and easier host experience when they host two visitors together. It helps everyone feel more comfortable quicker. We recognize that it isn’t an option for everyone though, since it requires two separate beds.