In the Beginning

1969-1970 - In the Beginning

On February 27, 1969, the first organizing meeting was held to make plans for an international volunteer conference that would “encompass all phases of volunteer activities in health, welfare, education, recreation and culture.”

The date of October 18, 1970 was chosen for the opening of the conference.  At the meeting, Ruth Powlison suggested the conference theme of “Volunteering – The Bridge of Understanding.”  The idea was inspired by a ceramic tile wall entitled “Bridge of Understanding,” designed by artist Florinda Leighton in the International Lounge of the Commons at the University of California Riverside.