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April 2, 2007

Northern Indiana families sought as hosts for international students

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. - Families in northeast Indiana are needed to act as hosts for Polish students and their chaperones over a two-week period as part of a 4-H exchange program.

"Even in rural America, improved communications and the Internet place our youth in a globally interactive world," said Lee Stanish, Purdue University international youth and Extension specialist. "It is important to prepare youth for cross-cultural communication."

Students will come from the Swietokrzyski Province in south-central Poland. Approximately 12 polish students ranging in age from 15-18 and eight chaperones are expected to arrive May 30 and depart June 15. Group activities for students and families have been planned for two days.

"The exchange gives host families and Polish students an opportunity to learn about another culture," Stanish said. "Being a host family provides youth a unique and engaging learning experience."

This program is for families in Adams, Allen, Blackford, DeKalb, Elkhart, Grant, Huntington, Jay, Kosciusko, LaGrange, Noble, Steuben, Wabash, Wells and Whitley counties. The application deadline is April 10. Contact Stanish at (765) 494-9831 for an application.

Selected families are expected to attend an April 29 host family orientation session. Families may host more than one person. Students' fluency in English varies.

Both families and students go through a screening process. Characteristics and hobbies are matched up to provide each party with the best experience possible.

Indiana International 4-H programs are sponsored by Purdue Extension and the youth development and agricultural education department.

For questions and additional information, contact Linda Hines at (765) 494-8433 or toll-free at (888) 398-4636 or Stanish at (765) 494-9831, lstanish@purdue.edu.

Writer: Julie Douglas, (765) 496-1050, douglajk@purdue.edu

Source: Lee Stanish, (765) 494-9831, lstanish@purdue.edu

Ag Communications: (765) 494-2722;
Beth Forbes, forbes@purdue.edu
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