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Host Family Articles

How Being A Local Coordinator For Exchange Students Has Changed My Life

We are seeking volunteer host families for 2024

Please let us know of any families you think have the willingness and resources to help one of our exchange students. Exchange students come from one of these countries:

Argentina, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Paraguay, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey and Vietnam.

In my life, I have had so many opportunities, but this one of the most important opportunities I have had.

“I have met and gotten to know wonderful Host Parents and families, and of course teens from all over the country. I love this job”.

— Chris (ETC local coordinator)

My name is Chris Giles. I am a Coordinator/Supervisor for Foreign Exchange with ETC. I have been in the exchange program for 15 years. Married and have two grown adult children and 7 grandchildren and 1 great grandson. They live far away from Iowa, which is where I live.

My heart is to bring families and students, from all over the world to bridge our countries together. These kids take home all the experiences they have, while being in the United State and take these experiences back to their family and friends. They are some of the most dedicated children wanting to enrich their lives for their future. They are great ambassadors to their country.

In my life, I have had so many opportunities, but this one of the most important opportunities I have had. I was reared in an orphanage but knew my family. It is what has made me today. The home I was reared in taught me the important things in life, love of country and love for God. This facility was formed 10 years after the Civil War and became home for children whose parents that couldn’t give their children a decent life, because of different reasons, death of a spouse or other hardships. One of the natural parents had to be in the armed forces. Financially it was so different then, rearing children and my mother was the most unselfish human I knew. She wanted the best for my brother and me.

You’re wondering why I love this opportunity so much? Because I want to give back to teens to have great opportunities and more that I had. I have gained so much, learning from these teens, and had, and is having so much fun doing this. I have met and gotten to know wonderful Host Parents and families, and of course teens from all over the country. I love this job. If anybody is willing to look in to their hearts and make this opportunity happen, you won’t regret it. Hosting an exchange is so enriching! The hardest part is when they leave… but they come back to visit and you also have the opportunity to go to their homeland.

How Being A Local Coordinator For Exchange Students Has Changed My Life
How being a Local Coordinator for exchange students has changed my life
How being a Local Coordinator for exchange students has changed my life

— Chris G. (local coordinator)

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