UConn Students Host International Family Day with NCFR Grant Award

Members of NCFR's state, regional, and student chapters, known as affiliates have the opportunity to apply for several annual NCFR awards. The 2020 deadline to apply is Monday, June 1. Learn more.


Below is a report from NCFR member Lindsay M. Westberg, a doctoral student studying human development and family studies at the University of Connecticut. Their student affiliate group was the 2017 recipient of the Affiliate Grant Award. Here's the story of how they used their grant to hold a community event:

On October 20, 2018, the University of Connecticut Council on Family Relations (UCCFR), a student affiliate of NCFR, hosted an International Family Day event at the Mansfield Public Library. Ahead of the event, we contacted all of University of Connecticut’s cultural organizations and invited them to participate in the event and share their culture through a children’s activity of their choosing. We also went into several undergraduate classes in our human development and family studies department and encouraged individuals to participate.

UConn Family Day 1

In the end, we had 14 countries/regions represented, including: Afghanistan, Botswana, China, Egypt, Greece, Iran, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Kurdistan, Palestine, Poland, Portugal, and Tibet. The children were able to participate in many crafts and hands-on activities such as making Chinese fans, making Botswanan ankle shakers, and learning how to write their names in Kurdish. A few of the stations also had traditional snacks for the children to try.

UConn Family Day 2

All of the children who came to the event seemed to have a great time with the activities, while older children and parents enjoyed talking to the student representatives about the uniqueness of their cultures and regions. The event was a wonderful opportunity to engage with and educate children and families about different cultures, as well as raising awareness of our local community’s diversity. Overall, our UCCFR representatives had a great time and we are grateful for having been able to host such a fun and educational event for the Mansfield community.

UConn Family Day 3

We used some of the funds from the affiliate grant to purchase general supplies and decorations for the International Family Day event. This included tablecloths of the colors of each region’s flag, paper “passports” for the children to bring around to each station, stickers featuring each region’s name and flag, balloons, lemonade, and water. We also gave each station the option to be reimbursed for up to $15 of supplies for their activities.

UConn Family Day 4

We hope this story gives you ideas for how to use a grant for your affiliate. The deadline to apply for 2019 affiliate awards is Saturday, June 1. Learn more.

You can also read about Gizem Erdem's experiences upon receiving the Affiliate Councils 2018 President-for-a-Day Award, the deadline for this award is also June 1.