Common Questions about Hosting

Are we good candidates?

Host families come in many shapes and sizes. There is no typical host family: families with teens, no children, young children, children who have grown, single parents, and grandparents. Host may live in Dekalb, or in a more rural area surrounding Dekalb. Our students are also from diverse family situations. Using your interests and preferences, an exchange student will be chosen to try to fit your family situation.

How will our family benefit by hosting a PYLP Participant?

Hosting an exchange student is a rewarding experience for your whole family. You’ll learn about another culture and language — without leaving home. You’ll start a life-long relationship with your new “son” or “daughter,” and when your student returns home you’ll have a special friend in another country. Members of your family will feel closer to each other through sharing your daily lives with an exchange student. If you have children, they’ll gain a broader perspective on the world, learning more about geography, communication and international cultures. If your children are young, they’ll probably love having a big brother or sister from another country. You will be a citizen diplomat, by creating positive impressions about America and Americans, breaking stereotypes and fostering mutual understanding and respect.

How long do we have to host our PYLP Participant?

The PYLP participants will be staying with host families for two weeks.

My family isn’t a “traditional” family, is it still possible to host?

Of course! Our host families come in all shapes and sizes. Host families may include single parent households, parents with adult children, families with small children or many other varieties. A few examples of host families include (but are not limited to):

  •   Single adults
  •  Working parents
  •   Single parents
  •   Same sex couples
  •   Couples without children
  •   Couples with children (of any age)
  •   Adoptive parents
  •   Empty nesters
  •   Military families

What is required of a host family?

Families hosting high school students should:

  • Be able to provide for an additional member of the family including a separate bed, suitable study area and three meals per day.
  • Offer a supportive environment as the student goes through his or her adjustment process.
  • Be interested in teenagers/international students and have realistic expectations of what life with a teenager is like. Help your student adapt to your family and to U.S. life and culture.
  • Familiarize your student with your hometown and promote participation in school and community events.
  • Provide a safe and secure environment for the student to live and learn

Will my PYLP participant speak English?

All students will be required to speak English in order to participate in the program, however some participants may be more proficient than others.

Will I receive financial compensation for hosting?

No. You will not receive compensation as a volunteer host family. The U.S. Government does, however, appreciate your commitment to international exchange.

Am I the PYLP legal guardian?

No. The exchange student’s natural parents remain legal guardians. The student’s program takes legal responsibility during the course of the program. Each exchange student’s Certificate of Health contains a medical release form so that host parents may secure medical treatment in the case of an emergency.

How will our PYLP get around?

Since exchange students are not allowed to drive, the host family is expected to provide transportation. Participants might also use public transportation or a bike.

What if the student needs medical attention?

Your student is provided with health insurance that will cover any expenses should they require a visit to the doctor. Before a student is accepted into most programs, they must undergo a complete physical exam and submit a certified report documenting that they are in good health.

For more information about the hosting experience please visit the United States Department of State website at: