UWC Dilijan is an international community of young people aged 16 to 19 from all five continents. For many of the students this is the first time they are far away from their families. Through this programme, families from around Armenia welcome students into their homes for a night, a weekend or for longer breaks. For students, it’s a respite from campus life and a chance to develop close relationships with Armenian families. Many students describe their time together with local families as one of the most rewarding experiences of their two-year stay at UWC Dilijan.
It is a unique opportunity to introduce local families to young people who share their cultures, traditions, cuisine from around the globe, to learn more about their lifestyle and to hear some of the 60 or 70 first languages spoken by them. For many of the host families it is also a wonderful opportunity to work on their English and engage in interactions in foreign languages.
Hosting her let us feel part of something bigger, to be part of another family somewhere else.
- Mariam, Yeghegnadzor
Some host families show interest hosting the same student throughout their time at UWC Dilijan. The relationship which is developed through host families is the foundation for intercultural understanding and help to make a strong tie between local and international world. The host family programme serves as a means to bring UWC mission to the wider community of Armenia and take the cultural traditions of Armenia to college. UWC Dilijan tries to keep the families connected as much as possible, through welcoming them to dinners at school and inviting them at events at the college.
To invite students to your home, please contact our Host Family Scheme organiser first. They will assist you in matching students with families and facilitate communication between the two. Often, the first step for a new Host Family is to meet one or more students for a meal to get to know them on a personal level. As a scheme volunteer, you can identify when and for how long your home is available for homestay.
Opening your home
The best way to begin any homestay is to talk about the expectations you may have from your guests, including how you wished to be addressed, how cultural or religious differences could be handled, what expectations you have regarding curfews, doing jobs to help around the house, participating in family activities and so forth. Establishing these at the beginning is essential to a comfortable and enriching experience for you, your family, as well as the student.
The safety and wellbeing of students is our first priority, as these are for your family members. All Host Family volunteers must successfully pass a Criminal Record Check before joining the scheme. Before visiting families, students are given an orientation of the responsibilities they have as guests, including offers to help around the house, respecting the rules of the family, keeping living spaces tidy, being active members of the household and being open to sharing their culture and experiences.
If you have any further questions, please contact our Host Family Scheme organiser.
060 750 800, ext. 1302 or email@example.com.