Naples Council On World Affairs Broadens Horizons

Naples Council 3The Naples Council on World Affairs has been in business since 1981. It’s grown to an organization of more than 2400 members. The purpose is to bring the news and issues of world affairs to its membership, whose interest in world affairs foster their membership. The Council offers ten lectures each season every other Monday.The organization always has a sellout crowd of about 1500 people. The speakers travel here on Sundays and speak twice on Monday at 3:45 and 7:30. The organization is a membership only mission.

“There are some 94 of these organizations throughout the country but we are the only large volunteer organization throughout the country,” says Daniel Bumstead, who is former past president and currently the chairman of the outreach committee. “The Board members devote a great deal of their time to the Council ensuring great programming. This is only one of several unique qualities.”

He says Naples being a retirement community gives the membership time to read and discuss issues concerning international affairs.

In addition to the ten major lectures, secondary lectures are organized on a regular basis. Other activities include the Great Decisions program, which accommodates hundreds of members who attend these discussion groups to discuss the important issues of the world.

“This is a very enthusiastic group of people because they devote time to both,” says Bumstead.

The Naples Council for World Affairs has several superstar programs that benefit area students. One is a Model United Nations event that takes place every March for two days. Teams from all over Collier and Lee counties participate, pretending they are delegates to the United Nations and representing various countries. Scholarship funds are awarded to the outstanding performers. This is only the beginning,naples council 2 though.

“We are currently fielding scholarship applications from area high school students for the Experiment in International Living program that sends students for five to seven weeks in a foreign country,” says Bumstead. “And for the Governor’s Institute in Vermont, which is for two weeks of political, cultural and social mixing between American and foreign students in Brattleboro, Vt. Then there are scholarships to the summer school at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C. These are for one-week of intensive lecturing and study on either international relations or national security affairs on the Georgetown campus.”

The Outreach Committee is currently organizing the Academic World Quest at both the middle school and high school levels. This is a contest in which teams from a multitude of schools manage questions posed to the entire group. The Middle School Academic World Quest will be held on February 15 at Community School beginning at 9 am. Attendance is free to the public. The high school Academic World Quest will be held on March 15, same time and place. The public is invited to attend both these events. The winning high school team receives a trip to Washington to compete in a national contest. Last year the team from Community School came in second in the nation.

“We’re in the schools working with kids and they are just amazing,” Bumstead says. Every year the Council also sends three to four teachers for specialized training on how to teach foreignrelated matters. For membership or more information on the Naples Council on World Affairs visit or call 239.649.3942.Naples council

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