Host Family For Chinese Students - CrossContinental.org recently sent volunteer vacationers on special cultural expeditions to China, allowing them to gain work experience while spending the New Year with host families in China.
CrossContinental.org recently sent volunteer vacationers on special cultural expeditions to China, allowing them to gain work experience while spending the New Year with host families in China.
Host Family For Chinese Students
Volunteer work abroad and cultural expedition programs are growing in popularity among people seeking a deeper cultural understanding when they travel. The opportunity to experience Chinese New Year with a host family in China creates memories that will last a lifetime. CrossContinental.org recently sent volunteer travelers to China to gain work experience and learn about a rich culture with a Chinese host family.
Housing And Accommodation
Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival in China, is the most important traditional festival in the Chinese calendar. Chinese New Year 2014 is on January 31, which will be the Year of the Horse. It is widely celebrated among Chinese families with many traditional cultural activities, including dumplings, fireworks, and dragon and lion dances. Most Chinese families stay up all night for the celebration. This is an experience of a lifetime for cultural adventurers.
Matthew De Corrado, a volunteer traveler from Australia, celebrates Chinese New Year with a host family in China. Matthew joined the program with the goal of practicing Mandarin, making a difference, gaining international work experience, and gaining a deeper cultural understanding of China. There is no better way to achieve this goal than to join a volunteer abroad program in China. While doing a short-term teaching project, Matthew had the opportunity to live with a Chinese host family and constantly share his way of life with them.
With a welcoming host family and happy children in China, Matthew improved his Mandarin and got to understand China as a whole. His projects in China included teaching English as well as physical education. As shown in the attached video (http://youtu.be/_S5kaMeounQ), Matthew from New York and another international volunteer, Aaron Barnes, report and show their first experience abroad.
Chinese New Year's Eve is full of wonder and a truly magical time for anyone lucky enough to experience it first hand. Traditional Chinese families spent the night making dumplings, lighting firecrackers and playing games among other activities. Matthew experiences this the same way a real Chinese family experiences it.
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Matthew says, "I looked everywhere for a volunteer agency that fit my criteria, and CrossContinental ticked all the boxes. CrossContinental has flexibility that other [organizations] don't have, and its pricing is not a barrier to entry. As a university student myself, its program is make sense."
Cross-Continental Solutions offers affordable yet flexible volunteer abroad, intern abroad, cultural immersion, language studies and gap year programs. Teaching, health care, community development, business coaching, HIV work, caring, orphanage work, journalism, photography, wildlife, agriculture, environmental protection, microfinance, tourism, marketing and more. Programs are located in many locations around the world, including Africa, Asia, and Latin America. By living and working alongside local residents, participants will have an exceptional cross-cultural experience and the opportunity to truly make a difference. For more information, visit CrossContinental.org.
Voluntary travelers spend Chinese New Year in China with host families in China. Volunteer abroad to teach sports in China during Chinese New Year, Asia Volunteer abroad to teach English to children in China, Asia Volunteer abroad to teach English to children in China. Caring for Children in China, Asia, Denver - It was Miaofan Chen's first trip away from his native China. At lunch with us in Denver, she looked so nervous that I had to ask, "Is this your first time eating a hamburger?"
That encounter with large American parts was one of many observations that students from abroad shared with us. Miofan, from Hefei in eastern China, is the latest of half a dozen youngsters from around the world to call our guest room home. Needless to say, we learn from them as much as they learn from us.
A Traditional Chinese New Year Experience With A Host Family In China
Our interest in receiving international visitors comes from our own experiences abroad. My husband, daughter and I returned to the United States in 2012 after two decades as an Associated Press correspondent on three continents. People have welcomed us into their hometowns all over the world. Even now, when we go on vacation, we meet strangers who offer menu recommendations in Brazil or Slovenia or help us navigate the subway in Moscow or Tokyo. Hosting foreign students allows us to pay these debts forward.
It is also a way to connect with the world from our front door and see our country through someone else's eyes.
An Iraqi student who stayed with us for two weeks was surprised to see people in wheelchairs going to work and school in Denver. Not that her own country, torn by decades of war, wasn't crippled by injury or disease. But they said they were hiding in Baghdad. She helped me see that I was taking the progress here for Americans with disabilities for granted.
The Iraqi Young Leaders Exchange Program, supported by the State Department, and local partner World Denver brought the Iraqi teenager to a busy meeting with local development groups. Other organizations have taken our visitors to basketball games, mountain retreats and scavenger hunt centers. Often our visitors go to school with their daughters.
The First Chinese Students At Williston
But sometimes I think our main contribution as hosts is to give them time to relax and reflect. We share a meal and show around Denver, including a favorite view of the Rockies from the soccer fields near my house.
Guests help make pancakes on Sunday morning. We have sent a French student to work with our daughter's swim team and a Brazilian for her piano practice. Miofan skated with us and she handled the ice for the first time with great joy when she was shown eating a hamburger as big as her face.
All our guests knew enough English for daily communication. Any young person willing to embark on these journeys has the ability and flexibility to meet more than half of us while navigating cultural differences.
But these are teenagers. One or two guests sit at the table where courage fails. I once googled "starvation" to make sure that a particularly picky eater could survive a week on nothing but blueberries and coconut water. And pancakes.
Shanghai Accommodation Gallery
Hosting opportunities are easy for us to arrange through our daughter's public magnet school, the Denver Center for International Studies. Students there can study Chinese, French, Italian, Japanese (my daughter's choice), Lakota, or Spanish and have rich opportunities to experience the world through classes, clubs, travel, and hosting.
A school staff member helps connect organizations with host families. We check her calendar to see if we can accommodate a visitor. The organizers accommodated our preferences for girls our daughter's age and one guest at a time.
So far we have chosen to stay only a few weeks to fit our busy schedule. And if my pancakes fail, at least the guest won't be hungry for long.
Contact your child's school or someone nearby. They may have or be willing to establish a relationship with an organization that recruits host families through schools. They include the Amazon Education and Cultural Exchange Foundation, which focuses on US-China relations, and Global Ties US, which connects Americans with people around the world.
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Organizations you can contact directly include Adolesco, which matches families but lets them make their own schedules for visits.
Groups offer depth and breadth of support. Rotary, for example, provides a list of questions in English and two dozen languages from Afrikaans to Turkish that hosts and guests are instructed to answer together on the first night. I think it's too late to overcome Rotary's expectations – including bedtime with my own child.
Education First gathers young international travelers in New York for orientation before dispersing them to families across the country. Group orientation reduces culture shock as they try new foods together and get used to hearing English.
Organizations say these small interventions can have far-reaching effects. After an Eisenhower White House conference on citizen diplomacy, Alyssa Fox, Sister Cities International's residency director, describes her goals: "To achieve peace and connect, one person, one community at a time."* Denial isn't everything. The experiences are similar when you live with a host family. I am sharing my experience!
What It's Like To Live With A Host Family In China?
I admit that at first I was afraid to live with a new family for a whole month in a completely different country! I mean, who isn't sixteen, especially if you don't know how to say hello in your native language. For what it's worth, I was as excited as I was scared.
After finally meeting my host family, I realized that there really was nothing to be afraid of. I was paired with a really loving, loving family
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