Exchange Program

Program Introduction

The FIAT-IFTA International Funeral Exchange Program is the outcome of the cooperation between FIAT-IFTA and OFSA – Ontario Funeral Service Association. Past President of OFSA launched his idea of an exchange program for mortuary students and funeral professionals in 2014.
Only FIAT-IFTA and OFSA Members may participate in this Funeral Exchange Program as Program Partners.
Program Partners are a Home Organization or Institution and a Host Organization or Institution.
By signing an agreement on behalf of the applying students or staff members the Program Partners guarantee that the correct implementation and execution of a Program Session according to the regulatory requirements.
Professional staff members or students (employed or enrolled by one of the Program Partners) who participate in the Exchange Program will have the title: Funerary Observer Abroad: FOA. This title underlines that they are not paid and not employed workers during the three weeks’ session.
The number of participants is limited to a maximum of 10 per Program Session during the month of June or the month of October of each year. There are two exchange sessions per year.
The Funeral Exchange Program shall be managed by the FIAT-IFTA secretariat on the basis of a data base comprising the participating Program Partners. FIAT-IFTA website : FUNERAL EXCHANGE PROGRAM provides the Program regulations and definitions and the Online Program Documents. FIAT-IFTA and OFSA can terminate this agreement unilaterally by serving a six months’ notice.


Declaration of Non Liability

The provisions of this Agreement provided in writing or on the websites of FIAT-IFTA and OFSA are subject to a non-liability clause stating that FIAT-IFTA and OFSA shall not be liable for any personal or financial direct or indirect consequences or effects, resulting damage, loss of profit or any other damage of any other nature caused by and/or related to the execution of this program agreement and/or information on the websites.


Program Partners

A. Home Organization
Funeral Homes approved by FIAT-IFTA National Members or by OFSA.
Funeral Education Institutions selected by FIAT-IFTA National Members or by OFSA.
B. Host Organization
Funeral Homes approved by FIAT-IFTA National Members or by OFSA.
The comprehensive database of Program Partners shall be available on this website.



Funeral Exchange Program

Worldwide program developed by FIAT-IFTA and OFSA to enable funeral home staff members and mortuary students to stay during three weeks overseas in a professional environment to broaden their mortuary education and culture.

Home Organization (Program Partner)

Selected Funeral Home employing a staff member or Funeral Service Education Institute where the participating student is enrolled during at least one year. The Home organization shall incorporate the written and signed report of the exchange session in the curriculum of the staff member of the participating student.

Host Organization (Program Partner)

Funeral Home that provides to the staff member or the participating student the professional environment that enables to broaden his/her mortuary culture. The Funeral Home issues a written and signed report: Notification of results of the exchange session to the Home Organization and a copy to FIAT-IFTA and OFSA.
Exchange Program Council
The Exchange Council oversees all activities of the FIAT-IFTA Funeral Exchange Program and operates on behalf of the FIAT-IFTA Federation.

Exchange Session

Three weeks stay overseas of the staff member or the student defined by the Exchange Agreement of the FIAT-IFTA Exchange Program.

Home – Host Agreement between the Program Partners

Exchange contract concluded between the participating Home Organization and the Host Organization for each exchange session.

Funeral Exchange Program Final Report

The Host Organization issues a written and signed report: Notification of results of the exchange session to the Home Organization and a copy to FIAT-IFTA.
FOA - Funerary Observer Abroad
Participating professional staff member or mortuary student are called: Funerary Observer Abroad: FOA.

FIAT-IFTA Exchange Program Council

The FIAT-IFTA Exchange Program Council oversees the selection and advising process for applicants for exchange. The Council also provides input into strategic direction and planning. The Funeral Exchange Council is comprised of two persons: 1. FIAT-IFTA Board Member, 2. Advisor.

The Council receives before April 1 and August 1 of each year the completed FOA Application Form and the Home – Host Agreement required to start the exchange. The April1 forms are the application forms for the three weeks’ exchange in June. The August1 forms are the application forms for the three weeks’ exchange in October. The Council members review the forms, verify FIAT-IFTA membership within two weeks. After approval by the two Council members the FIAT-IFTA secretariat authorizes the exchange and informs the participants.
At the starting date of the exchange session the FIAT-IFTA secretariat contacts the Host Organization.
The FIAT-IFTA secretariat holds a survey of all listed Home and Host organizations or institutes and shall share this information with OFSA.


Terms and Conditions of the Exchange Program

General information and duration

The duration of the Exchange program is three weeks. Either in the month of June or in the month of October.

Agreement provisions

Home and Host Organization and FIAT-IFTA and OFSA agree that the provisions are clearly set before the internship starts in an agreement. (Home -Host Agreement Form)


Applicants must be enrolled/employed at the Home institute. Student Applicants must have completed at least one year of mortuary studies. Candidates must submit the completed documents and a letter of motivation outlining their motivation, career goals and eligibility to participate in the program.
A recommendation letter issued by the Home organization’s principle is required.

How to apply

Application form, as provided by the program, are to be submitted to the members of the FIAT-IFTA Exchange Program Council in due time: 2 months before the start of the exchange session: (FOA Application Form)

Funerary Observer Abroad (FOA) Responsibility

The FOA agrees to submit - with the FOA Application Form - all required documents 2 months prior to the start of the program.
The FOA agrees to fully and constructively participate in the study program.
It is highly recommended during their stay abroad that the FOA presents a lecture to the host about the funeral tradition in their country. This is beneficial for the mutual exchange of information and understanding of the international funeral community;
The FOA agrees to respect the laws and customs of the host’s country. Additionally, the student will respect the funeral traditions of the host country;
Upon return the FOA submits to the home institution (cc FIAT-IFTA secretariat) report outlining their experiences abroad;

The FOA has sufficient English proficiency or is willing to undergo a TOEFL test.

Home Organization’s Responsibility

Home institution agrees to accept the host’s program content onto the FOA’s transcript;
Home institution monitors the academic and professional progress as well as well-being of the FOA during the internship.

Host Organization’s Responsibility

Host institution is responsible to fully provide the curriculum to the FOA, as described in the agreement;
Host institution agrees to support and offer valuable guidance in support of a fruitful and beneficial internship;
Host institution monitors the academic and professional progress as well as well-being of the student during the internship;
Host institution is responsible to help and/or to arrange housing for the full extent of the three weeks’ program.


The FOA submits a completed declaration of financial support form with a current and official bank statement or a letter on bank stationary.

Visa, Insurances

Visa application is the responsibility of the FOA. The host institution is responsible to provide up-to-date information with respect to the visa application requirements;
The FOA submits all required visa documentation in due time to the host institution;
Visa and all travel insurances must be arranged by the FOA at least three months in advance of arrival to ensure that travel arrangements can be made in due time.


Forms to be completed by the program partners and the applicants:
Home -Host Agreement
FOA Application Form

(Please submit with the FOA Application Form: Financial Declaration, Visa (if required), Travel Insurance and Health Declaration).
All FIAT-IFTA Funeral Exchange Program documents serve to implement the contractual provisions of the FIAT-IFTA International Funeral Exchange Program and shall fully comply with the agreement provisions in accordance with the terms set out therein. The undersigned of any Agreement document confirm the correctness of all the provisions of this agreement and agree to all points of assumption and articles in it.


It is a free downloadable document.
Fill in all the document details.
Print the FIAT-IFTA document and add the official documents and signature.
Scan the forms and official documents.
Mail the scanned forms and official documents to:
No need to send originals by post, we accept scanned application form and documents

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