Networking Organisations

Getting to know expats on a social level Staff

Written by Staff Published on 15.08.2005 12:46:23 (updated on 15.08.2005) Reading time: 5 minutes

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Written by David Creighton

Are you new to the <?xml:namespace prefix = st1 />Czech Republic? Do you want to get to know other ex-pats at a social level?  Interested in networking opportunities to help you develop your business? There are numerous organisations for foreigners and plenty of ways for ex-pats to meet and develop business contacts.<?xml:namespace prefix = o /> 

The Czech economy has become much more developed since the first flood of ex-pats in the early 1990s, with many posts previously being held by foreigners now being filled by Czechs. Despite this, new foreign investors and their representatives continue to move into the country, and so there is still a steady flow of international business people coming to the Czech Republic – the new DHL office in Prague is a good example of this. This obviously creates demands for networks, whether business or social, catering for foreign residents. So one of the most common ways of expand your contacts and broaden your circle is to join an international club or association.   

There is a wide variety of such organisations, which range from the International Women´s Association of Prague to the Prague Cricket Club, and you´ll probably find a group which interests you.   You may want to join an organisation just for social purposes and to get to know new people, but given that many people from the business world are members of clubs and associations, joining an organisation can also be a very useful networking opportunity. Some of the most significant clubs and associations are listed below.   



Long-established international organisations such as the Rotary Club or Lions Club, have been set up in the CzechRepublic. The Rotary Club has a number of branches in the country, in Prague and smaller towns and cities. For more information see

. The Lions Club International also has representation throughout the CzechRepublic, and it can be contacted at

. Both are basically Czech-speaking organisations, but members may be able to give you useful contacts.



IWAP (International Women´s Association of Prague)


This is one of the most well known international organisations in the city. Founded in 1991, it is a non-profit organisation that is open to all women, who can join as members. The aim is to foster friendships among them and to develop awareness of Czech culture, by means of various activities. Fundraising is one of the most important activities of the IWAP.


The organisation holds regular meetings, including lunches, and an AGM is held each year. IWAP publishes a magazine, ”The Bridge”, on a regular basis, and it organises various activities based on particular interests. IWAP is also a good focus for mothers to meet and share experiences, and it has produced a book, “Prague For Kids”, which is a comprehensive guide to children´s activities in the city.


For further information about the book and IWAP see or phone 222 252 220.

Cultural Centers

Cultural Institutions can also serve as great networking organizations. Often they hold special events, exhibitions, and give language courses, creating an atmosphere of natives to a culture and those who wish to learn the language or learn more about a culture.

French Institute:

Scandinavian House:
Cervantes Institute:




If you are looking to broaden your circles in Prague through playing then you have several options available, as there are several international sports clubs in Prague. There is also an international sports league.


ISL (International Sports League)


Although not a sports club in the traditional sense, because the ISL is aimed at corporations, many ex-pats in Prague will have contact with this organisation in some way, mainly through work or friends and colleagues. The ISL is therefore a way to play competitively but at the same time get to know people and meet potential clients.

The ISL was founded by an American ex-pat to give employees a chance to play sport, develop as a team and socialise. ISL runs leagues in sports in basketball, football and volleyball, and new sports have been added to the portfolio recently, such as shooting. Teams play over three seasons of the year, and consist of players who mainly come from major companies. Team membership is organised at a corporate basis and is on a first come first served arrangement. If interested, your company should apply as soon as possible, as places fill up fast. Further information about ISL can be found at the organisation´s website at

or by phoning 222 510 701.

There are also several sports clubs which focus on particular games. The Prague Cricket Club welcomes ex-pats as well as Czechs. Their website is

.  Homesick Brits and Irish may wish to contact Prague Barbarians RFC, a rugby club set up by a group of ex-pats. For more information about the club see

CANZA The Czech, Australian, New Zealand Association (CANZA) was formed in June 2005 to bring together Czechs, Australians and New Zealanders in a social setting that fosters the promotion of Australian and New Zealand culture. The aim is to provide a social networking platform for Australians and New Zealanders living in the Czech Republic, while at the same time providing an avenue for Czechs and others, with an interest in Australian and New Zealand culture to become acquainted with it without the need to travel. See for more information CHARITY EVENTS

It is not just clubs and associations that can provide networking and social opportunities. The Prague Post newspaper for example is also a focus for ex-pat activities in the CzechRepublic. The Post, together with its Endowment Fund, organises annual fundraising sports activities such as The Heavy Hitters Tournament, a softball tournament that brings together international teams from the business sector. This event has become something of an institution. The Endowment Fund promotes other sports events, such as rugby and golf tournaments. At the same time these competitions help a number of projects, whether they be educational or environmental. For further information about these activities contact The Prague Post office (Tel. 296 334 400) or send an email to


These are just some of the organisations that meet, and obviously space does not permit a detailed list of all the clubs and associations catering for foreign residents in the CzechRepublic. If you are working independently it´s obviously also worthwhile contacting your chamber of commerce or commercial section of your embassy, as they will be focal points for information about what´s going on. If you are working for a multi-national firm your colleagues will probably able to advise you of organisations to join. But however you decide to approach it, making new contacts and new friends among foreign nationals in the CzechRepublic is not difficult.

David can be reached at

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