International students from all over the world come to Upper Canada to study at the district’s schools each year. Programs that include international students are growing across the country, but especially in places like Upper Canada that offer truly authentic Canadian experiences.
That means a guaranteed, first-hand look at seasons, extraordinary nature, snow, winter sports, and, of course, the little nuances of life in Canada.
“I took this photo yesterday and it made me smile,” says Canada Homestay Network Relationship Manager Eve Campbell referring to a snapshot of three grinning teens, each holding an iconic cup. “How more Canadian (or Ontarian) can a love for Tim Hortons be?”
Eve says one of the best parts of her job connecting local homestay host families with international students is watching the students fall in love with Canada.
The students in the photo—Jana (from Norway), Marcos (from Spain), and Laura (from Switzerland)—recently attended Russell High School in Russel, Ontario and aren’t shy about talking about how much they enjoyed studying and living in Upper Canada.
“They’re torn between the excitement of returning home and, yet, wanting to stay in Canada,” Eve says. “They told me every young person should go abroad at least once to experience meeting new people and doing new things—not simply as a tourist.”
Homestay helps integrate students into the communities they study in—and break the “tourist barrier”—by offering more than just room and board.
Students benefit most when they live with engaged, active families who will help them learn English, include them in their discussions, activities and excursions, and introduce them to the area and Canadian culture.
“The students summed up their feelings about their experience in Upper Canada,” Eve says. “Visiting here wasn’t a year in their lives, but a lifetime in a year.”
Your family can benefit from hosting students
Upper Canada District School Board has partnered with Canada Homestay Network (CHN) to support homestay hosts in Upper Canada communities. CHN is a family-run, non-profit society that for nearly 25 years has helped thousands of Canadian families welcome students from more than 70 countries.
Hosts get 24×7 support, a generous allowance to offset expenses and the opportunity to bring the world to their front door.
For more information about hosting, contact email@example.com or 1-877-441-4443 ext. 2176. To learn more about the hosting experience and how your family can benefit, visit: www.whyihost.ca/uppercanada.