Youth Exchange-Host Family Expectations
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Rotary Youth Exchange - Host Family Expectations
Any caring and responsible family with an interest in hosting a young person from another land can be a tremendous host family! The best host families are really just normal families and they don't fall into any one, easy-to-define category.
Rotary differs from many international exchange programs in that our students generally live with at least two and up to four families during their exchange year. This gives the student a more well-rounded experience in a culture, having experienced family life from multiple perspectives. It is also less of a commitment for host families; the typical length of stay is about three to four months instead of a full year.
Rotary's host families run the full spectrum of possibilities.
  • Families do not need to be affiliated with Rotary to host Rotary Exchange Students.
  • Families with small children make great host families because young children get the experience of having a big brother or sister and the exchange students often enjoy the relaxed atmosphere of practicing their language skills with a younger child.
  • "Empty Nesters" or retired couples are good too because they can have more time to spend with their student than younger parents do and they often enjoy having a young person around the house.
  • Families with high school age children are ideal because host brothers and sisters can quickly get the student involved in school and community activities.
As a host family, you will be responsible for room and board for the student, supporting and guiding the child through the cultural adjustment and overseeing schoolwork. Generally, you'll treat this child just as you would your own. Families have to be vetted to US State Department standards, just like we would like to have happen with our own kids. This includes an application and background check for anyone over the age of 17 who lives in the household.
Host families are not reimbursed or paid for their efforts. Nor is there any charge to become a host family. Tax credits may be available to you as a host. Check with your tax consultant for more information.
The Rotary club provides support to the host family and the students through the services of a Youth Exchange Officer and a Counselor.  The student is invited and encouraged to take part in Rotary meetings and activities, and club members will often participate by extending invitations to the student for special activities or gatherings.   
If you are interested in becoming a host family or would like more information, please contact the Rotary Club’s Youth Exchange Officer, by clicking on the link on the website home page.