American Councils prides itself on its comprehensive support of students throughout their program, from the application stage through pre-program preparation and the duration of their stay. While staff take great care preparing for all program contingencies, occasionally issues arise in the course of the program that are outside of our control. American Councils takes several steps to mitigate risk and respond when emergencies arise by:
Maintaining a 24/7 emergency phone that is available to all program participants and family members
Registering Americans traveling overseas with embassies
Closely monitoring State Department travel advisories and maintaining supplemental local organizational resources to assess safety risks
Preparing students to diminish local risks that are inherent in the host country environment
Maintaining knowledgeable overseas staff who support and guide participants
Adhering to internal protocols for decision-making and information sharing to deal with program and individual participant emergencies
Given the nature of the countries that we serve, unforeseeable emergencies are unavoidable. American Councils has on several occasions sheltered in place or evacuated groups, depending on the nature of the emergency. We work closely with U.S. embassies, U.S. State Department, local partners and institutions, travel experts, and insurance companies to move students safely away from unstable situations.
Safety is no less important for international participants in American Councils programs. We maintain a 24/7 emergency phone so that participants can be in touch with staff, regardless of day or time in case of a health or safety emergency.
American Councils Washington DC business hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Eastern time. During those hours, call our main phone number at 202-833-7522. If you have an urgent situation and need to contact American Councils outside business hours, call 1-800-621-9559.