Host families provide a unique experience and are invaluable to our schools to provide housing to our English students. A stay with a host family is more than just a study abroad experience, an English student becomes part of a local family during their studies. Homestays can help students continue to improve their English outside of the classroom and develop lifelong friendships with their host family.
Thank you to Tara in Canterbury, UK for sharing her perspective as host family:
My family and I starting hosting international students in 2014 and since then we have had lots of different nationalities: Italian, French, Spanish, Austrian, Chinese, Brazilian, German, Russian and Saudi Arabian. We have hosted a variety of different ages over the years and love experiencing how different every student is as an individual. We learn something new about ourselves and our guests each time we have a new student live with us.
We enjoy having students with us in our home living along side our own children. As a family we like to learn about different cultures and get to see our children experience meeting people and making friends from all over the world.
We encourage our student guests to become part of our family and learn what it is like living in an English home. We cook traditional British dishes for them, so they enjoy the full cultural experience. We always try to eat together to encourage them to interact with the whole family.
Here in our home we are always having conversations with our students and encouraging them to broaden their English language skills. We love to learn a little about our student’s language too!
One of our favourite memories of hosting is when we had two Saudi Arabian students (Odai and Mohammed), they were a delightful pair. They were both under 18 and stayed with us for 10 months. In that time they became a part of our lives as much as we did theirs. My two daughters loved spending time with the boys, we even went out all together for meals and trips. It is one of my fondest memories, the time they spent with us. We were very sad to see them leave, but from time to time we still talk to them both as they are studying here in the UK, which is a lovely feeling as you get a real sense of achievement knowing that we were able to make a positive difference to their stay at Stafford House.
I have so many great memories of hosting it would take me days to write them all down!
Thank you Tara for sharing! We look forward to reading about more memories in the future.