Who will our participant be?

AFS takes many factors into account when placing a participant with a host family. Do you want to host a male or female? Is your family noisy or quiet? Do you participate in many sports? Are you a music-loving family? AFS does not seek to find the “perfect” placement, but looks for common interests and values between the family and the participant which will help the two establish bonds more quickly. Once AFS has selected a participant to place with your family, you will review the application papers to make sure you feel comfortable with the placement. Just as there are many types of families, there are many types of participants. Our hope is that we can bring together people who will enjoy sharing and learning together.

How will our family be selected to host an AFS participant?

AFS takes many factors into account when placing a participant with a host family. Do you want to host a male or female? Is your family noisy or quiet? Do you participate in many sports? Are you a music-loving family? AFS does not seek to find the “perfect” placement, but looks for common interests and values between the family and the participant which will help the two establish bonds more quickly. Once AFS has selected a participant to place with your family, you will review the application papers to make sure you feel comfortable with the placement. Just as there are many types of families, there are many types of participants. Our hope is that we can bring together people who will enjoy sharing and learning together.
Does AFS pay host families to host the participants?
No. Families host because they want to open their home to someone from another culture and thus get to know the world a little bit better.

What must we provide for our AFS participant?

Each participant should be provided with his/her own bed. Beyond that, AFS asks that each host family provide the participant with a home, integrating the participant into the life of the family. Your participant should enter fully into your daily life, including helping with household chores, etc. Your family is a central part of the participant’s experience; it is where he/she gets to know the culture and lives of the host country on the deepest levels.

What if our participant gets sick or injured?

Of course, your first response will be to take him/her to a doctor. AFS covers medical expenses (except for routine dental care and eyeglasses) for all participants. The expenses of doctor visits, x-rays, hospitalization, etc. will be covered. Your AFS office will send you materials on what to do in such situations. In addition, your participant will have a card with telephone numbers to call for verification of medical coverage.


What if we have problems communicating with our AFS participant?

Given language difference, some difficulties in communicating can be expected. These challenges can also provide a good opportunity for learning. As your participant adjusts, you will find his/her communication skills improving. Remember that participants who speak your language well may not yet have learned all the subtle signals and idioms unique to your national language. In addition, AFS provides each host family and participant with a contact person. AFS contacts are often people who have been through AFS experiences and are there to help you work through any challenges you might face during your hosting experience.