The founding idea that now serves as the root of the mission at People to People International was imagined by, then, General Dwight D. Eisenhower’s heart as he liberated Concentration Camps after World War II. After becoming President Eisenhower, with nations on the break of another war, he decided to take the bold step of founding People to People on September 11th, 1956.

President Eisenhower believed that everyday citizens wanted a more peaceful world and could achieve it more effectively without government interference. However, in order for People to People to truly succeed, President Eisenhower knew that this organization could not be run by the government and instead needed to be run by the people themselves. 

President Eisenhower recognized that this would be a monumental undertaking and asked his good friend, Joyce C. Hall, founder of Hallmark Cards, Inc for help. Together, they brought “People to People” into the private sector as a not-for-profit organization in the State of Missouri on October 31st, 1961 and moved the World Headquarters from Washington D.C. to Kansas City, Missouri.



Today, People to People International continues this legacy through three main pillars: humanitarian work, cultural exchange and global education. The organization is responsible for the immersive cultural travel, the education of all age groups in global enrichment and the relevant humanitarian assistance for thousands of people every year.


People to People International members are the lifeblood of the organization. Members, whether part of a chapter or at-large members, help PTPI promote our mission of peace through understanding. Without dedicated members around the world, we would not have the reach that we need to help invigorate change. 

If you would like to become a People to People International Member please fill out the form below and we can assist you or purchase a membership below. 


We have thousands of members around the world, and each has a story to tell. From the youngest to oldest members and from the most poverty stricken corners of the world to our own backyards, we strive daily to change lives and break down barriers to peace and understanding.