Host a Student from the Basque Country with SUSA

We believe the simple act of welcoming students into our homes is a powerful way to allow God’s love to flow through our lives. You can show this life changing hospitality by inviting a Basque student to be part of your family for the month of July.  Our program started with a family who went out of their way to share their lives and love with a Basque teen.  You can do the same!

What is a month of hosting a student like?

To be honest, that depends a lot on each family and on your personality. Hosting a student certainly isn’t easy, but it also is much more doable than you think. And you may discover that there are some hidden benefits you never imagined like living in community with other families from your church, of experiencing another culture, and feeling as if your student has always been a part of your family. Families who are busy, families with children, families who are going on vacation, and even families who think they’re boring have had great experiences hosting a student for a month.

My family is interested in hosting

What do we need to do as a host family?

These volunteer teams of 8-10 host families are supervised and supported by a local coordinator. The Basque students spend most of their time with their host families, but throughout the month the coordinators plan several activities (of which 6 are required…which is a little more than 1 per week). During a later week of July most students attend camp (some students elect not to attend camp). Looking for more detailed information? Try our host family FAQ’s.

Room and Board

We ask that there's a space for the student to call their own (a bed, desk or chair, and dresser for example), but it’s common for students to share a room with American siblings. Hosting a student also adds some extra expense for things like food, utilities and activities you may choose to do as a family. We ask that you treat the student like one of your own children throughout the month, but students will bring their own personal spending money and will have travel/medical insurance for the time they are with you.

Supervision

A parent or responsible teen must be with Basque student at all times. This often means that there is a stay-at-home parent but it can also work great to “team” with another family or single who your student can be with during the day if both parents work. Just because you're super busy doesn't mean you can't host. Sometimes, with a little bit of creative thinking, busy schedules can become the best experiences for the students.

Time Together

This is the best part of the month...spending time with your student. This helps your student practice English and helps you build a deep relationship. While there is no requirement of activities you must do with your student, the families that have had the best experience tend to be intentional about spending quality time together. So unleash your inner teenager and go to walk through the mall, go for a hike, go bowling, play board games, cook dinner together, have a barbecue and play cornhole, or even go to garage sales! Basically...live your normal life, but ensure the student has a good time and a variety of experiences in the USA.

Activities

There will be several required activities throughout the month that will be organized by your coordinator. There may be other activities that get planned impromptu throughout the month, but the pre-planned activities include the following: Orientation, Welcome BBQ, Water Activity, City Tour, Local Cultural Activity or Sporting Event, and a Farewell dinner. As a host family, you need to make every effort to at least help your student be able to participate in these activities.

What are the requirements to host?

Host families desire to share love with others, have the ability to graciously listen to different opinions and lovingly accept a broad range of people, take an extra effort to invite others in and make them feel welcome through conversation and togetherness and desire to sacrifice their time and skills for the sake of other people.  Our prayer is that this experience isn’t a one-time cross-cultural experience but what hopefully will become a long-term relationship with a Basque student and his/her extended family. With that in mind, host families need to have:

A bed and small space in your home for the student (like a dresser and chair or desk for instance)

A love for others, a hospitable heart and a willingness to relationally invest in your student throughout the month!

A gracious attitude and a global mindset that accepts cultural differences

An appropriate life stage: Actually...there is no ideal life stage; newly married, empty-nesters, or anywhere in between! Anyone, in any life stage, can apply to host.

Training: Participate in monthly meetings with other host families in your church. (April – June; there are two, 2-hour meetings)

An Application: Well...what are you waiting for? Get started filling out the application to host now!

Looking for more detailed information? Try our host family FAQ’s.

Still interested?

Please get in touch with us for more detailed information on our host family qualifications, and application process so that you or your church can host Basque students.