Open your heart, share your home!
Make life-long connections and embrace new cultures in your family! Positively impact the life of your family by hosting an International HSUSA student in your loving home! From married, single, empty nesters, young kids, teenage kids, or no kids - HSUSA welcomes any host able to provide a safe home, three square meals, and loving support.
Becoming a Host Family is embarking on a new adventure. The daily rhythm: getting up, going to bed, evenings, meals; the holidays: "Thanksgiving", Christmas, "Halloween", birthdays; special events: barbecue, cinema, bowling, visits ... all are different with a new family member from another culture in your home. Being an HSUSA Host Family makes your exchange student part of your family.
Hosting an HSUSA exchange student is a chance to share your story, traditions, and customs with others while discovering a new culture right in your own home. If your family is open to new and enriching experiences – willing to provide guidance, love, and support to an international young person embarking on a journey of self-discovery – hosting an HSUSA exchange student is for you!
Host families have many different faces and backgrounds. It doesn’t matter if you have children, whether you’re single, or an empty nester; HSUSA welcomes all types of families. And you can live anywhere—the suburbs, the city, or rural America. If your family is willing to open yourselves to new experiences and provide guidance, love, and support to a student looking to further themselves, you will be a great host family.
Being an HSUSA host family brings culture and a sense of adventure to you and your family while teaching valuable lessons about acceptance and global unity to your whole community.
Benefits of being a host family include:
Sharing your story, traditions, and customs while learning about others
Experiencing what it’s like to have another sibling
Introduction to a different culture and country
Learning a new language
Exposing your school and community to the world
Appreciating your own family, country, and culture
Lifelong connections to your student and their family abroad.
Informal exchanges as your kids or yourself are invited to visit their home and country
More than a bed, a second family!
Hosting an exchange student means more than providing a bed and meals. As an HSUSA Host Family, you’ll welcome a new member into your home, share your everyday lives, and grow as you get to know each other and share your cultural perspectives. You’ll be surprised at how much you learn about yourself, your family, and your community.
We match students with host families based on personality traits, hobbies or extracurricular interests, family make-up, and more. That way you feel less like a guest and more like a member of the family. We consider the relationship between a student and host family to be the most important relationship of the student's exchange year.
Hosted Karen, from Egypt
Host School: Ravenwood High School,
"Karen was a wonderful addition to our family. She got involved with lots of things like field hockey, a school play, and loved the travels we did around America. We went to the Grand Canyon, we saw the ocean and my daughter loved having a new sister. It was a great experience for all of us. We keep in touch with Karen and can’t wait to see her again, either over there in Egypt or when she comes back to the United States."
A Happy, Healthy Home:
A bed, a place to study, and a place they can call "home".
Three a day- Host families provide the basics. It is again a way to promote your vision of the American Lifestyle.
It could be the public school bus or the host family or friends provide rides for where the student needs to go.
Listen, guide, love & treat them as your own. Hosting is all about sharing your version of America with an exchange student.
What's next? How does it work?
STEP 1: CONTACT US
using our online contact form. The HSUSA team is available to answer all your questions about hosting an International Student.
STEP 3: BACKGROUND CHECK
HSUSA puts top priority on safety for the students in our program. All of our host families go through a screening process to ensure the student's safety that includes a criminal background check, a home visit & three character reference calls
STEP 5: SELECT A STUDENT
The first step is to choose a profile amongst all the students who applied to our program and looking for a host family. Visit the 'MEET OUR STUDENTS' section and see exchange students coming to your community from around the world.
STEP 2: APPLY
We recommend allowing up to 45 mins to complete your Host Family Online Application. It will take even less time if you have the complete contact information for your references on hand.
STEP 4: APPROVAL
Upon the approval of your application, you will start working with our Local Coordinator. We will cover everything you need to know before opening your home to an International Exchange Student.
STEP 6: OPEN YOUR HOME
The final step is to prepare your family and home to the arrival of the Student. We encourage both families (student & host) to connect prior to arrival & start creating a bond.
Open your home to the world!
From Orange (Virginia) >
Hosted George, from Bulgaria
Orange County High School
'We have hosted many times before from all over the world. We even ended up helping one of our exchange students come back to America and he’s like one of our family now. We enjoy opening up our home to these students and letting them be part of our family. It gives us a chance to get to know them and learn about another culture. We even ended up helping one of our exchange students come back to America.'
From Palmyra (Virginia) >
Hosted Fatma, from Egypt
Fluvanna County High School
"Hosting has been phenomenal! Fatma has added a lot of excitement to our lives.
We wanted to give her a real American experience so we took trips to Florida to Disney World, to New York to see a Broadway show, and many other local trips in Virginia."
From Inwood (West Virginia) >
Hosted Tim, from The Nederlands
Musselman High School
"We asked Steve [our Local Coordinator] to find us a guy who liked sports because we are a sports family. Tim, from the Netherlands, clicked right along with our family last year. While he was here, he got to go along with us on our Christmas trip to the Bahamas and really had a great time. I think he really enjoyed the American holidays."
Frequently Asked Questions
Hosting an international exchange student can be a highly rewarding opportunity for your family. The chance to discover a different perspective than your own and to share your own culture with an international student is a daily lesson in cultural understanding. The bonds created span continents—and can last for many years to come.