Share Your Home,
Change the World.
What is Expected of a
YFU USA Host Family
Often we hear people tell us that they'd love to host but they think they're too busy, not the right type of family, or a bit nervous about what hosting a YFU exchange student entails. Yet since 1951, several hundred thousand
families took the first step, hosted a YFU exchange student, and changed their lives forever.
YFU USA Host Families come from all nationalities and religious backgrounds, have diverse occupations and income levels, and live in cities, towns, or rural areas. They are just like you!
YFU USA Host Families all share the ability and desire to open their homes and hearts to a new family member. You and your family have a lot to share! Invite an exchange student to become a part of your family and begin a lifetime experience that will change the world.
Examples of YFU USA Host Families
- Single adults
- Working parents
- Single parents
- Same sex couples
- Couples without children
- Couples with children (of any age)
- Adoptive parents
- Empty nesters
- Military families
Providing for an Exchange Student
Hosting is about sharing your version of the American lifestyle with a new exchange son or daughter. As a host family, you’ll give your student a caring, supportive, and warm family life. When you volunteer to host an exchange student, you agree to:
- Welcome your new son or daughter as a member of your family
- Be interested in teenagers/international students and have realistic expectations of what life with a teenager is like
- Attend YFU orientation events, read our preparation materials, and maintain regular contact with your local volunteer
- Help your student adapt to your family and to U.S. life and culture
- Offer an emotionally supportive environment as the student goes through his or her adjustment process
- Be able to provide for an additional member of the family including a separate bed, suitable study area and three meals per day
- Familiarize your student with your hometown and promote participation in school and community events
- Understand YFU policies and encourage your student to adhere to those policies
All you really need to host an YFU student is the ability and desire to share your home and open your heart to a new family member. Your family and your community have a lot to share!
Host Family Preparation
As a host family, you will receive the YFU Host Family Handbook and other orientation materials. They outline policies and procedures and provide valuable information on what to expect and how to make your exchange experience most successful.
"YFU helped prepare us to host Hiro by coming in and making sure that we would be compatible with him before they placed him in our home."
Loralee Hillman (YFU USA Host mom)
You will be invited to an orientation before your exchange son or daughter arrives. During your exchange you will be invited to 2-3 orientations (which typically occur on a weekend for a few hours each.) You will have the opportunity to talk with local volunteers, get to know other host families and their students, and develop strategies to ensure that every member of the family gets the most out of your exchange.
We are very proud of the extraordinary support provided to every student and host family. You and your family can count on caring quality support from YFU volunteers every step of the way.