Corvallis, Oregon | Uzhhorod, Ukraine
P.O. Box 176, Corvallis, Oregon 97339
Connect with Uzhhorod, Host a High School Exchange Student!
Here is an excellent way for you and your family to experience the culture of our Sister City of Uzhhorod Ukraine in a very personal way and yet never leave Corvallis. Have you ever considered serving as a host family for an exchange student from Uzhhorod for an academic year? It is a truly rewarding experience and a unique way for your family to become intimately involved in the culture of our sister city and a great chance to share our community and your family’s history and culture as well.
Exchanges for visiting high school students are a special and unique way to learn about the United States in general, American culture and our local community. Critical to a successful exchange is a welcoming host family who provides the same supportive and nurturing environment they provide for their own children. For many host families the student continues as an active member of the family long after the actual exchange is over. Given the war in Ukraine an exchange opportunity also gives the student a chance to experience a bit of normalcy and to again feel safe and secure, something every young person deserves.
“Julianna,” who is a fifteen-year-old exchange student from Uzhhorod, is participating in a program called Youth for Understanding (YFU). CSCA–Uzhhorod is assisting YFU in securing a host family for Julianna. Here is a brief description of Julianna supplied by YFU, “A dual citizen of Ukraine and Hungary, talented and athletic Julianna is coming to the U.S. from Uzhhorod, Ukraine. She plays both violin and piano and has five years’ experience horseback riding, several years in a dance team, as well as swimming team and tennis experience, but now she reports mostly working out at the gym. With her family, she enjoys swimming, cycling, hiking, skiing, visiting museums and attending concerts, or staying home to cook, watch movies or TV, and play board games, somewhat depending on the season. With friends, she’s likely to be found walking in the city, picnicking at the lake, hanging out at a café, catching the latest at a cinema, or planning birthday and holiday parties together. During her exchange year, she looks forward to new experiences such as cheerleading, drama, or joining an environmental club. Having learned kindness and politeness from her mom and confidence and courage from her dad and possessing her own interest in English, Julianna is ready for and excited about her exchange year in an American family.”
What are the responsibilities of the host family, you might ask? The host family agrees to provide housing and three meals a day as well as ensuring the student has reliable transportation to school. Health insurance is provided by YFU, and students arrive with their own spending money. Of course, the most important requirement is to provide a welcoming home environment that will support the student’s success while they are in our community. For the child’s safety host families are vetted to ensure a good fit and a background check is required. Ideally, the family would have a child of similar age, but that is not required.
School attendance will be based on the public school boundaries associated with the host family’s residence in Corvallis. If the host family’s child is attending CHS and lives in the Crescent Valley area or vice versa there is an opportunity to request a variance. CHS and Crecent Valley have agreed to hold a tentative spot for Julianna, however they would like us to secure a family as soon as possible, so the unused slot can be used for another exchange student.
Coincidently, Julianna is the daughter of a long-time friend of CUSCA who is active in several joint projects between Corvallis and Uzhhorod. Her father has visited Corvallis in the past and given his relationship with Corvallis feels strongly that our community is the absolute best place for his daughter to spend a school year learning about the U.S.A!
We are confident given our special relationship with Uzhhorod and the current challenges facing Ukraine that there will be several families interested in hosting Julianna and encourage you to act promptly if you are interested. To find out more about hosting with YFU please go to their website. To learn more about this specific hosting opportunity contact CSCA-Uzhhorod Council Vice-Chair, Pete Bober at (541) 760-8490 or firstname.lastname@example.org.