Pen friendship – A fun way to practice your language and make the world a friendlier place

Malcolm was a student who took one of our Spanish courses in Valencia, Spain. Malcolm is part of the International Friendship League (IFL) which is a voluntary organisation that encourages people from around the world to get to know one another through a range of activities including pen-friendship, email, travel, hospitality and social activities.

The IFL is an international group of people who are keen to make the world a friendlier place through encouraging friendships and understanding between people of all cultures. They believe that through cross-cultural communication and understanding we can promote peace and international friendship, whatever your country of origin or race.

The idea of international penfriendship matched perfectly the ideals of IFL and soon hundreds of people from many different countries have got to know each other through IFL: ‘Initially people start by writing letters to each other but often the friendship leads to e-mail exchange, telephone calls and visits. Some pen friends have even got married!’

We think it’s a wonderful idea, not only for its potential to promote peace and cross-cultural communication but as a fun way to help you improve your language skills and learn more about the culture behind the language. There are IFL groups in Britain, France, Sweden, Portugal, Uganda, Zambia, Kenya, Senegal and the Seychelles and new groups are starting up in several other countries. In many other countries worldwide there are individual IFL members.

To learn more about the International Friendship League and how you can get involved, please visit their website.

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