Our first international visitor program of the year brought six delegates from Iraq on the International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP). The World Affairs Council has been hosting international delegates through the Department of State’s IVLP program since 1985 and consistently hosts hundreds of visitors to Kentucky and Southern Indiana every year! 2018 saw a wonderful start with an active, engaged, and incredibly friendly delegation.

The Iraqi delegates started their time in Louisville on Martin Luther King Jr. Day by meeting with Marcia Roth of The Mary Byron Project and Yung Nguyen, co-founder of VINE (Victim Information and Notification Everyday), to discuss how the murder of Mary Byron was the catalyst for the launch of the nation’s first victim notification system.

After that, delegates visited the Volunteers of America Mid-States Family Housing Services to volunteer their time sanitizing toys and playing with children. This was one of their favorite memories in Louisville! A visit to the Jefferson County Domestic Violence Intake Center allowed visitors to meet with victim’s advocates to learn about the court process, emergency protective orders, and resources for victims.

The day ended with a Home Hospitality Dinner hosted by WAC Board Member, Roberta Hershberg!

Day two began with a presentation by Chris Owens of the Louisville Metro Office for Women, where she shared details on the Child Visitation & Exchange program and Trauma Informed Support, a new partnership between OFW, LMPD, and JCPS Schools.

Delegates then traveled to Frankfort, KY to meet with Kentucky State Police to learn about the Missing Children’s Unit. Visitors were able to learn about the KY State Police’s efforts in locating and returning missing children to their homes.

From there, the visitors traveled to the Kentucky Correctional Institute for Women, where they were led on a tour by Deputy Warden Kevin Hayes. They receive an upfront look at the state’s only women’s prison, observed inmates train assistance dogs, viewed living conditions and educational/vocational training programs for inmates, and had lots of questions answered!

If you’re interested in hosting an international delegation at your place of work or home, contact our Visitor Program Manager, Laura Duncan at [email protected]!

Visit the group’s Facebook Photo Album!