Ayusa Launches 2015 Search for American Families to Host Exchange Students in Utah

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Ayusa International is currently seeking volunteer U.S. host families in Utah interested in hosting a foreign exchange student for the upcoming 2015-2016 school year.

The Raitts of Ogden rehearse for a play on the American Revolution with the exchange students. Left to right: Wally, host dad; Mathilde from Denmark; Krystof of the Czech Republic and host mom Pam.

Opening your home to an international exchange student holds unexpected rewards for American host families. Share your American culture with an exchange student and learn about theirs. It will be an adventure of a lifetime!

Ayusa International, a non-profit organization that has promoted global learning and leadership through high school student cultural exchanges for more than 34 years, is kicking off its annual search for families in Utah interested in hosting international students for the 2015-2016 school year.

Ayusa is looking for host families throughout the entire state, specifically in and around:

  •     Salt Lake City, Herriman and other surrounding communities
  •     Logan, Brigham City, Ogden

“Opening your home to an international exchange student holds unexpected rewards for American host families,” said Pam Raitt of Ogden, who together with husband Wally hosted Krystof of the Czech Republic and Mathilde of Denmark last year. Pam added, "Share your American culture with an exchange student and learn about theirs. It will be an adventure of a lifetime!"

Ayusa works with diverse families who are interested in hosting an international student of high school age. Families without children, empty nesters, military families, retirees, and single people are all welcome. Ayusa families come from all 50 states and reside in rural, suburban and urban communities.

“Utah is one of the newest destinations for Ayusa exchange students in the U.S.,” said Cathy Galli-Vaneveld, Ayusa regional manager for the Western States. “Our students are excited about the possibility spending a year with a host family in this exciting and historical part of the West,” she continued. “Hosting an exchange student also allows families to learn about other countries and cultures, without the travel. If you’ve ever thought about sharing your Utah lifestyle with a student from abroad, I encourage you to give us a call, or check out our website to read the many stories of these international friendships that last a lifetime!”

Host families provide the exchange student with three meals a day and a bedroom (private or shared). A professionally trained Ayusa representative supports each host family, student, and local school throughout the program year. Ayusa’s exchange students are 15-18 years old and come from more than 60 countries around the world. All students are fully insured, bring their own spending money and are proficient in English.

How to Host an International Student
Interested families can learn more about the program and available exchange students, and request additional information by visiting http://www.ayusa.org or calling 1-888-552-9872.

The process to apply is simple. Families complete the online application, which includes questions about themselves and local high school, references, and a background check. Once the application is submitted, the local Ayusa Community Representative will conduct an in-home interview. They can also help each family with any questions they may have about the application or process.

After families are fully approved, they can select the Ayusa student they would like to host.

About Ayusa
Ayusa International (http://www.ayusa.org) is a 501(c)3 non-profit student exchange organization founded in 1981 and an official U.S. Department of State designated Exchange Visitor Program Sponsor. In addition, Ayusa administers high profile grant programs funded by the U.S. Department of State and other organizations. Ayusa is a sister company of Intrax, a family of organizations that provides a lifetime of high-quality educational, work and volunteer programs that connect people and cultures. Intrax is headquartered in San Francisco with offices on four continents.

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Patsy Barich
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