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The NCUC Buddy Program is an onboarding and knowledge sharing method used to orient new community members. It involves assigning him or her to a NCUC buddy.

The buddy is an existing NCUC member, who guides the newcomer through 6 months in ICANN community. It would include a formal documented process that outlines the buddies’ responsibilities as well as what items they should cover over the first few weeks or months of joining. The buddy system would also encourage the newcomer to share tips, tools, knowledge, and techniques they learned from work/volunteer experiences, where applicable. The knowledge sharing goal is to incorporate new ideas and technologies that enhance the NCUC and ICANN community. Finally, a buddy would give the newcomer an opportunity to offer confidential feedback about how the onboarding process is going.

If you are interested in becoming a buddy, please send an email to

Deck of Cards
idBuddy Program
labelOutline of the Buddy Program

The Buddy Program matches newcomers with NCUC members who have been with the Community for some time (typically 6 - 18 months), for a period of six months, with two goals:

To provide the newcomer with a point of contact for general queries regarding structure and process of ICANN/NCSG/NCUC and

To help the newcomer integrate with the community by providing access to someone who is familiar with the processes, culture, attitude and expectations.

The program is coordinated by NCUC Chair, and supported by the ExCom and ICANN Staff.

labelBuddy Responsibilities

Learning matters. Current members who act as buddies must want newcomers to succeed and be committed to helping them.

Buddies should have the skills and knowledge to perform the following types of tasks:

  • Explaining how NCSG/NCUC and ICANN is structured
  • Teaching/or tutoring, such as explaining unfamiliar ICANN terms
  • Explaining the Policy Development Process
  • Creating a dialogue on ICANN's guidelines, norms, culture, and unwritten practices
  • Sharing insights on how things are done in the NCUC/ICANN community

Arranging informal meetings with newcomer, such as lunch, coffee, and others during ICANN/other meetings

labelCharacteristics of the NCUC Buddy
  • Has a willingness and ability to help acquaint others;
  • Has demonstrated strong level of engagement;
  • Has the time to be accessible to the newcomers;
  • Where possible have characteristics for collaboration with the newcomer e.g. Regional, Professional, or other similar aspects;
  • Has excellent communications and interpersonal skills;
  • Is well known by current members;
  • Is able to be involved for an expected 6 months period
labelWhat the NCUC Buddy is not

A buddy is not a substitute for the mentor or coach. They are available to answer relatively straightforward questions about NCUC/ICANN issues. 

labelTips for the NCUC Buddy
  • You are not expected to be an expert on everything, so don't worry about living up to this ideal;
  • Focus attention on the newcomer and what he or she needs to be comfortable and productive in the community;
  • Remain patient—it takes time to accomplish meaningful learning.
  • Don't try to cover everything right away. Remember, the newcomer more than likely feels overwhelmed during the first couple of weeks and will need time to digest all the information they are taking in;
  • Stay positive. Newcomers will learn in time with appropriate support;
  • Adjust learning rhythm accordingly. Be available, but give the newcomer time to adjust to you and feel comfortable with using you as a trusted source;
  • Try to identify the newcomer’s personality and communication style and adapt accordingly
  • Keep an open mind and don't be judgmental. The newcomer is relying on you to be a safe place to get answers to their many questions;
  • Maintain a positive, teaching attitude.
labelLength of Training Experience

The buddy system experience between you and the newcomer will be expected to finish if either:

six months expires, or either party requests it.

The buddy system is an informal training experience. This means that if either the buddy or the newcomer wishes so, they may not be involved in this experience anymore. It could also occur that the newcomer is allocated another buddy, and the buddy may also be allocated to a different newcomer. 

Contact the program coordinator if you have any questions.


This is an NCUC ONLY program for NCUC members. It is not affiliated with ICANN fellowship or any other coaching programs. If members have previously been a part of any other program, they can still enroll in which ever role/program (Buddy/Mentor) they desire.

This program will connect you to someone who will increase engagement in NCUC. When you receive your assigned counterpart, you have 48 hours to accept or reject your pairing with an email to the program coordinator. The Program Coordinator will do their best to pair you with someone else.

labelEvaluation Forms:


This is an NCUC ONLY program for NCUC members. It is not affiliated with ICANN fellowship or any other coaching programs. If members have previously been a part of any other program, they can still enroll in which ever role/program (Buddy/Mentor) they desire.

Current List of BuddiesHanan KhatibThato MfikweGangadhar PandayHoussem KaabiVrikson Iván Acosta VelásquezFarell FollyMelaku GirmaYazid AKANHO