Host Families Needed for Exhange Students
- HOST FAMILIES URGENTLY NEEDED FOR
INTERNATIONAL EXCHANGE STUDENTS!
To Whom It May Concern:
I am writing to you from an international non-profit student
exchange organization called Youth for Understanding (YFU).
More specifically, I am writing you in an effort to reach
out to community groups who might have an interest in international student
exchange, volunteerism, and cross-cultural understanding. YFU is one of
the nation�s oldest and most respected student exchange organizations,
and we partner with over 50 countries around the world.
This coming August, we have many students coming to the
Sacramento/Northern California area who are still in need of host
families. I am wondering if you would be willing to forward this e-mail
to your list of RPCV�s.
Here are some of the students who need host families:
Host families are needed urgently as our students arrive
throughout the month of August. I have attached some answers to
frequently asked questions about hosting below. Also, I have attached
some profiles of some of the students who will be coming to the area.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
Please let me know if you would be willing to pass this
information along to your members.
Interim Field Director
for North Central California & West Nevada
600 First Avenue Suite 410
206.262.0762 Toll Free: 866.493.8872
206.262.0768 Toll Free: 877.516.9481
YFU Answers your
Questions About Hosting An Exchange Student
How will our family benefit by hosting an international student through
Youth For Understanding USA
(YFU USA )?
There are many
reasons why hosting is a wonderful experience for the whole family. You�ll
learn about another culture and language�without leaving home. You�ll
start a life-long relationship with your new �son� or �daughter,�
and when your student returns home you�ll have a special friend in
another country. Members of your family will feel closer to each other through
sharing your daily lives with a YFU student. If you have children, they�ll
gain a broader perspective on the world, learning more about geography,
communication and international cultures. If your children are young, they�ll
probably love having a big brother or sister from another country. Most of all,
you�ll all have a lot of fun!
What do other families think about the YFU experience?
who have hosted an exchange student think very highly of the positive impact
the experience had on their lives and their own children�s lives. Perhaps
the opinion of YFU host families at the end of their hosting year can better
describe it for you: � 93 percent enjoyed learning about another culture
and sharing their culture with their international student. � 90 percent
say they increased their understanding of the differences and similarities
between their exchange student�s culture and their own culture. �
86 percent recommend hosting an exchange student to their friends and
relatives. Many go on to host another student and many others become YFU
volunteers. Whether you host one student or welcome many more into your home,
hosting a YFU student is a great educational experience for the entire family.
Why should we host through YFU
As a member of
the YFU international network, YFU
USA is able to draw on more than 50
years of experience in the exchange field. We�re dedicated to preparing
young people for their responsibilities and opportunities in a changing,
interdependent world. We accomplish this mission through exchange programs for
high school students. Since our program began in 1951, our hallmark has been
the extraordinary support we�ve provided to 200,000 students and their
host families. One of more than 1,000 professionally-trained volunteers works
with each student and family, providing support and guidance every step of the
way. Professional counselors and language tutors also are available when
needed. As one host mother put it, �YFU was there for us whenever we
needed them, 24 hours a day.�
How many international students come to the
US each year? What countries are
they from? How old are they?
More than 2,000
YFU students come to the US
each year from about 50 countries in Europe, Asia, Latin America,
Africa , and the Pacific. Also, more than 1,000 American
students live abroad with host families each year through YFU. All YFU
students are 15 to 18 years old.
How long do YFU international students live in the
US ? Would our student live with us
that whole time?
international students live in the
US for one academic year�about
11 months�from approximately mid-August through early July. Some
six-month hosting opportunities are available for semester students arriving in
either January or August, and occasionally even shorter stays. With the
exception of possible YFU-arranged field trips, your international student will
be part of your family during his or her entire exchange experience.
What are the requirements for being a host family?
are as different and diverse as Americans themselves. They come from all
ethnic, racial, economic, and religious backgrounds. They live in cities, small
towns, and rural communities. You don�t need to have teenagers to host.
Some of our host families are 2 people related by blood or marriage, or in a
committed relationship. Some are single people who live alone. Whether you have
young children, adult children, or no children at all, if you are interested in
sharing your home with a young person from overseas, YFU
USA will consider your application
to host. All you need to do is open your home and hearts to your student and
provide room, board, love, guidance, and the experience of what everyday life
is like in America .
It�s enriching�and fun!
Will our YFU student speak English?
international students who come to the
US have studied spoken and written
English. Most of them have studied our language for five years or more,
and international students from a number of countries must pass an English
proficiency test before being accepted onto the program. Undoubtedly, you will
find that your student�s English ability will improve remarkably during
your months together�something host families often find both exciting and
gratifying. YFU USA
provides paid tutoring for students who need additional assistance.
Will our YFU student attend school?
student will attend your local high school, will take courses typical of an
American his or her age, and will participate in extracurricular activities.
What other kinds of activities will our student participate in while in
the US ?
behind hosting is to have your YFU student be part of any activities your
family is involved in�from household chores to family outings. YFU
students come to the US
expecting a family living experience, not a travel program. However, many
families enjoy showing their student what makes our country special�everything
from historical places to natural wonders, from sporting events to the arts. As
one host father said, �We see things through new eyes when we�re
showing off our country to our YFU student. We�ve developed a new
appreciation for things we took for granted before.� No doubt your YFU
student also will make friends in school and in the community, and will be
involved in activities through these networks. Sometimes YFU also arranges
optional field trips to other parts of the country for international students.
How much does it cost to host a YFU student?
There is no
charge. The only expenses for your family will be the costs of including
another person in your regular ctivities, including three meals a day. You will
be eligible for a $50 per month federal tax deduction for hosting a YFU
Will our family be paid for hosting a YFU student?
No. A YFU host
family is not paid, as our goal is to encourage family members to accept their
international student just like a brother or sister, son or daughter. This way,
hosting becomes an enriching volunteer experience for the whole family.
Are we responsible for our student�s medical bills or spending money?
international students have their own medical insurance and bring their own
Does YFU require that we have a separate bedroom for our international
No, you don�t
need to have a separate room for your YFU student. He or she may share a
bedroom with a same-sex child. All you need to provide is a bed and a quiet
How are YFU students and host families matched up?
The first step
is for your family to complete an application and be interviewed by a YFU
volunteer. Then, your YFU volunteer will help you choose your international
student, taking into consideration a number of factors to help make the best
possible match. Variables include your family�s values, the kind of
activities you�re involved in (sports, arts, intellectual pursuits,
etc.), your religious preferences, whether you�d prefer a student who is
quiet or outgoing, what area of the world you�d prefer your student to be
from, and so forth. Hosting does require a period of adjustment for all
and for your student in the beginning. Common interests and values make that
How will YFU USA
prepare us to be a host family?
receive a copy of the YFU Host Family Handbook, which will be your reference
guide throughout the exchange year. Also, before your student arrives, you�ll
be invited to an orientation program for host families. Here you�ll get
the answers to any last-minute questions, meet other host families (including
some who have hosted before and can share their experiences with you), and
learn how to support your new family member through normal adjustments such as
culture shock and speaking a new language. You�ll also be invited to a
second orientation, shortly after your student arrives. Finally, keep in mind
that your most important resource, your volunteer YFU area representative, will
be there to answer questions and help you out in every way, all year long.
What will happen if we have problems while hosting?
Members of the
YFU USA support network, including professional counselors, will do their best
to help you resolve any difficult situations that arise during the year. Often,
the only thing that�s needed is a chance to talk things over with a third
party. YFU volunteers are trained to provide an opportunity for students and
family members to feel safe to discuss what�s troubling them.
Occasionally, YFU USA
will find another home for the student, although this usually isn�t
necessary. As you know if you�re a parent, getting to the other side of a
rough time with a child can be a very rewarding experience. It�s that way
with hosting, too.
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