Are you interested in diverse cultures? Do you enjoy meeting young people?
We are looking for volunteer hosts for our Pestalozzi students. In addition to their studies, Pestalozzi strives to enhance our students’ experience of being in the UK by offering them the opportunity to meet new people and to experience different aspects of local life. Host families form lasting friendships and often stay in touch for many years after the Pestalozzi student has graduated.
Could you offer a few invitations a year to one or two of our students to come to your home or join you for a day out?
If you are interested in becoming a host family, please contact Mags Alexander on 01424871926 or Mags.Alexander@pestalozzi.org.uk for more information.
N.B. Please note that this is not a paid position.
Being a Host Family
Beryl Bartter, 2012
We started hosting Pestalozzi students in 2005 and haven’t looked back since. The pleasure such a little effort makes to our lives is inestimable.
These young people are a very long way from their homes and have a lot of responsibility on their shoulders towards their family and community. They have come into a new culture and I felt they needed to get to know their host country more intimately, they needed to have someone here they could call their own, away from Pestalozzi – building on the care and friendship at the Village.
Being a host is like being an adopted Aunt/Uncle. Although, when visiting one young friend at Brighton University, I explained to a flat mate that I’m like an ‘adopted Aunt,’ I was immediately told by my student ‘No, you are an adopted Mum.’ I was very moved by this but have decided that Gran would be nearer the point!
These young people are so busy at Pestalozzi and with their studies at Hastings College, that we are lucky to have their company more than three or four times a year. The main thing is to be there at the end of an email or phone.
Young people are so invigorating to have around and these students are intelligent, inquisitive and eager to learn – always asking questions. They have points of view, are polite and are extremely well behaved.
We now have young friends at MIT, Yale and other American, German and British universities. Many of us give money to third world countries much of which gets into the wrong hands. We felt we could be more helpful and respectful by helping the population of these countries help themselves. This is what Pestalozzi International Village Trust does – and it is so much more personally satisfying.
Having a Host Family
Joseph Zimba, 2012
Visiting my host parents is an event that I always look forward to. The fun and I care that they give me really goes a long way to making my stay here in England feel just like home.
When I first met my host parents I was interested in knowing about them: how they live, what they did in their spare time and basically what the major difference was between my family and my host family. To my surprise I found that there was no big a difference between my host family and my family back home, except for perhaps certain things that could only happen in England such as sitting by a fire on a cold winter’s night – average winter in my city is about 10°C. I have come to learn a lot about England through my host family that I believe I could not have learnt from anyone else.
Our host parents have taken us to new places such as Portsmouth and Rye, which has given us a chance to learn more about England and this country’s rich history. Jyoti and I were also lucky enough to visit our host parents for Christmas, where we opened our Christmas presents together and had roast turkey. It really feels special to have someone who can make you feel at home in their home and to be a part of their family. It is wonderful to know that there is someone who cares for me, in my home away from home.