WHO WE ARE
Network of Nations (NofN) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization that links NIU (Northern Illinois University) and community internationals with each other, and with volunteers from churches in the DeKalb Co., Illinois area.
Many internationals face the challenges of cultural adjustment, language difficulties, isolation and loneliness. Approximately 1300 international scholars and students along with their families are enrolled at NIU every year. NofN is committed to extending hospitality and practical assistance, and offering them a caring community for friendship and cross-cultural understanding.
Network of Nations serves internationals from over 120 countries, many of whom return to places of influence within their communities and countries. Many continue the personal relationships which began here.
WHAT WE DO
The mission of Network of Nations is to care for the internationals that come to the DeKalb, Illinois area and to offer them a community of friends where they feel welcomed and appreciated. As world citizens, we appreciate the diverse cultures that internationals represent and look forward to learning about them. We want to help internationals work through the many challenges they face in adjusting to American culture. As Americans, we want those who come here from other countries to receive a more complete picture of what we value as a nation and as a community. And as Christians, we take seriously God’s word drawn from the Bible: We believe God wants us to show his love to people of every nation.
If you are an international in DeKalb County, our hope is that we will be able to help you have an enjoyable and meaningful stay in our community. We hope we will be able to include you in a community of friends.
“You should act toward the stranger who lives among you as you would toward one born among you. Love him as you love yourself.” — The Bible
Network of Nations grew out of an international student ministry started in the late 1990s. By 2000, it became clear that many more students could be helped by involving a broad group of churches. The international student outreach at Portland State University, in Portland, Oregon, provided a successful model that inspired Network of Nations to form in January 2001 in DeKalb.
The first project of Network of Nations was to continue the Friends Program, which had been begun by First Baptist Church of DeKalb, to coordinate friendships between international students and American friends in the community.
Intercultural Cafe, a weekly time of friendship and food, was launched with great success in August 2003. The Café continues to meet on Fridays during the academic year
Currently more than 10 churches and hundreds of individuals from the local community are involved in various ways in interacting with internationals.