Host families wanted for international students in Cheltenham
Due to a surge in applications from international students, Gloucestershire College’s Summer School is looking for Cheltenham families to host one or two students each this July and August.
In addition to a large group from Shanghai, there will be hundreds students from across the globe arriving at Cheltenham Campus on Monday 29 June, to benefit from English lessons, cultural activities and excursions for up to eight weeks.
Families living within a 30-minute walking distance or bus ride from the campus can earn £155 a week for hosting one student, with the option of hosting more if they have additional rooms, or students are happy to share their room with another.
In exchange, host families are asked to provide a bedroom, full board – breakfast, lunch and dinner – a weekly laundry service and WiFi access throughout the student’s stay. They may also be required to transport younger students to evening discos.
Besides the financial benefit, host families enjoy enriching and rewarding experiences as they learn about another country and culture; have the chance to help young people develop their language skills; and even form a lasting bond, with many hosts keeping in contact with their students long after they leave.
All new host families must undertake a DBS check and will require a home visit from the College’s Accommodation Officer before being accepted.
International Manager, Judy Woodman, said: “Hosting is a great way of experiencing other countries and cultures, and supporting students on their likely first time away from home.
In the summer, local host families have a great experience hosting for our junior summer school students, especially when visitors from Cheltenham’s twin towns of Annecy and Weihai meet up with the Mayor and old friends from previous visits. This year we have new groups from Shanghai and Chengdu in China, so please let us know if you too would like to be a host for us.”
The International Department is also looking for families who are able to host students from the end of August until mid-June 2016. During this time, families will need to provide students with half board – breakfast and dinner – during the week and full board on weekends, during holidays and any time the students aren’t required to be at College. Term-time host families can expect to be paid £145 per student per week.
18-year-old Karen Chan from Hong Kong is currently staying with a host family in Cheltenham and sharing a room with another student. She said: “My hosts make it feel like home and my host family is the best I ever had in the UK. I get on well with my housemate really well and we are like sisters now.”
Those interested in hosting a student this summer, or from September to June, should contact Gloucestershire College’s International Office on 01242 532007, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.gloscol.ac.uk/international for more information.