Left Hand Valley Courier - All Local, All The Time

By Debbie Odom
Special to the Courier 

Host families sought for international students

 

April 28, 2017



Students from all over the world are preparing right now to leave their countries to come and study in America for the upcoming school year. These students are leaders in their schools. They exhibit great academic skills as well as a heart for volunteer work. These are the students who will impact their countries when they return home with the experiences they have had while living here in America.

The students are placed with volunteer host families throughout the US. Host families are families with kids or without kids, retired, single, empty nesters. There is no “perfect” host family. All that is needed are people willing to open up their homes to one of these amazing students for a full school year or a semester.

In the process of hosting one of these students you gain so much in return. You gain an understanding of another culture. You increase culture awareness throughout your community by every person that the student comes into contact with. You gain a lifelong relationship with the student. Many host families will end up visiting their host student because of the relationship that has been formed.

By opening your home you are showing the diversity that is America. It doesn’t matter if you live in a rural area, town or a big city. It doesn’t matter if you have a big house or a small house. Diversity is one of the things that make America unique. Being able to host a student and expose them to the real America, not what is depicted on TV, is an amazing opportunity. It is also a great way to get involved with volunteering and giving your time to others.

There are still many students who need a host family. The families have the ability to pick the student that would best fit their family. Families receive support in the process having a local coordinator located in Longmont to walk through the process with them and to provide support to the student while they are here.

If you are interested in learning more about the program please contact me, Debbie Odom, at hostastudentAYA@gmail.com or 303-532-6577. You can also visit http://www.academicyear.org.

 

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