What is expected of a host family?
Hosting a student through the Rotary District 7640 Youth Exchange program can be an extremely rewarding experience for everyone in the family, yet it is a role that requires a lot of responsibility. Host families are to meet the following expectations:
- Before the student arrives establish communication with the student.
- Understand the program rules the student must follow.
- Know how to contact key Rotarians involved in Youth Exchange in case of an emergency.
- During the exchange provide a safe and welcoming environment for trust and friendship to develop between the student and your family.
- Support and make the student feel like a part of the family, with the same privileges and obligations.
- Gently encourage the student to learn and adopt most of the ways of your household.
- Provide room and board for the student. All students must have their own bed. If the student must share a room, it must be with a child of the same gender and similar age.
- Provide a place in the home where the student may study in private.
- Recognize the student’s birthday and other special occasions.
- Ensure the student knows how to contact family members, friends, and other support networks.
- In case of an emergency, know how to access and use the student’s travel insurance policy.
- Voice any concerns and questions regarding the student to the Rotarian host counselor, including serious homesickness, difficulty adapting to family life or school, or illness.
- Maintain close contact with the host club and address problems and concerns quickly.
- Exercise supervisory and parental responsibility to ensure the student’s wellbeing.
- Encourage involvement in community life by introducing the student to neighbors, friends, and local groups.
- Teach the student about the local culture and learn about the student’s culture.
- Advise the student about matters related to school, family, community functions, and friendship. What’s in it for your family?
- A great way to expose your family to another culture. It’s amazing what you learn from having someone from a different country stay with you.
- Assist someone learning your language and customs and see your own town and country through their eyes.
- Often you will build up a friendship with the student you’re hosting that will last a lifetime… A place to visit when on holidays.
Frequently Asked Questions
- How long will the student be living with my family?
Most long-term exchange students live with two or three host families during their exchange. This means the student may live with you for anywhere between 3 ½ to 6 months.
- Is it expensive to host a student?
You will see a rise in your grocery bills, there are no other costs to your family. The student receives $100 pocket money from the club. The club has made arrangements with the school; therefore there are no educational expenses, and the student is insured for any medical expenses.
- How will I communicate with the student?
Most students do not speak English as their native language. Most have a reasonable command of English, you will undoubtedly have the chance to help them improve their language skills.
Some anxiety is to be expected if you have never hosted an exchange student. If you have questions, please contact your Rotary Club Counselor to discuss it with them.
- They’re always looking for host families and will be delighted to talk to you.
Rotary District 7640
Re: Rotary Youth Exchange
470 North Delsea Drive
Vineland, New Jersey 08360