Lafayette

Mar 26, 2013 7:33 PM by Press Release

Acadiana Families Needed to Exchange Students

Port Barre,La.- Ayusa, a non-profit organization that promotes global learning and leadership through foreign exchange, study abroad and leadership programs for high school students from around the world, is looking for American families in the area interested in sharing their America with international high school students for the [2013-2014] school year. Applications for interested host families are currently being accepted.

"Sharing the American experience with an international student is a unique opportunity for the average American to profoundly impact the life of a teenager, and provide them with a positive, transformational experience that they will remember for the rest of their lives," said Sherry Carpenter, executive director of Ayusa. "host families are in a great position to show international exchange students an especially authentic slice of American life, which is one reason we are actively looking for host families."

Ayusa foreign exchange students come from more than 60 countries, are fully insured, bring their own spending money, and are proficient in English. Whether from Japan or Brazil, India or Sweden, Ukraine or Mexico, France or Lebanon, foreign exchange students are a window into another culture and a great way to travel the world without leaving your home.

"Host families are the heart and soul of Ayusa's foreign exchange program," said Elizabeth Landry ,Community Representative for Ayusa, and the local contact for the Acadiana area, "families have been hosting Ayusa exchange students for the last 30+ years, and the experience has been transformative for the students, who blossom in the local community through support from the families and schools."

There is no "typical" American host family and Ayusa welcomes all interested families, with or without children, from both urban and rural communities. Host families provide three meals a day and a bedroom (either private or shared). Each student is supported by a professionally trained community representative from Ayusa who works with the family and student for the entire program. All host families must pass a criminal background check and a home visit by an Ayusa representative.

Ayusa has been a member of the Council on Standards for International Educational Travel (CSIET) for more than 25 years - since its foundation. CSIET evaluates U.S.-based youth exchange programs so that students, families and schools can identify inbound and outbound reputable exchange organizations.

Ayusa is a 501(c)3, and an official U.S. Department of State designated Exchange Visitor Program Sponsor. Families interested in learning more about hosting an exchange student can visit http://www.ayusa.org or contact Elizabeth Landry at 337-592-3190

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