"My host family supported me in every way. They are so kind to me. When I get home from school, I feel relaxed and relieved every day. They treat me like part of their real family. Thank you . . . for being my host family and giving me a warm place to live."
~ International Student from Japan, 2017-2018
Hosting one or two PCS international students is a very rewarding experience and is also of great benefit to the international student.
International students may experience difficult adjustments as they study and live in a new culture. These adjustments require patience, endurance, and often the ability to relax and laugh at one's mistakes. We believe that if international students are in a family environment, they will be better able to make necessary cross-cultural adjustments and they will gain the greatest benefit from their study in the U.S. Our sincere desire is that international students and their host families will develop a strong relationship. This encourages learning and growth and results in a beautiful, lasting friendship.
Host families should provide:
- A physical environment which meets basic human needs such as food, shelter, and safety
- An emotional environment where the student receives love, support, encouragement, and guidance
- An opportunity for the student to be an important member of the host family
- Everyday family activities, such as eating meals together
- Family outings and recreational activities at home or away from home
- Community from attending Sunday worship, or joining a church youth activity at least one time a week with host family members
- A chance to learn how to do household chores - each host family has its own plan, but these jobs may include helping to wash dishes, prepare meals, clean the house, do laundry, and yard work; living in a family means that all members share fun times and work times together.
- Transportation to and from school, school activities, and some social activities
International students will be expected to show:
- Respect and cooperation through host family rules regarding curfew and activities - host parents function as substitutes for the international student's biological parents and expect to be informed of the student's activities and whereabouts at all times
- Communication with family members about important factual information, schedules, and needs
- Willingness to relate on personal and emotional levels about happy or sad feelings, activities or problems at school, or personal concerns
- Politeness, kindness, manners, honesty, and thoughtfulness toward all family members
- Interest in the lives and activities of family members and giving encouragement, help, or support to a host parent or sibling if needed
The International Student Program at Portland Christian High School recruits students and host families interested in learning and growing across cultural and language barriers, and who are willing to work at overcoming the challenges which these barriers may present. Both students and families will approach the hosting experience with attitudes of openness, patience, creativity, flexibility. Dedication to building a family together makes the experience a successful one.
The opportunity to study abroad provides the international student with personal growth and maturity while gaining academic knowledge and cross-cultural awareness. Serving as a host family offers rich opportunities to discover and appreciate diverse cultures, develop skills in interpersonal relationships, and the chance to show love beyond the context of their immediate family.
PCS host families receive a stipend to cover the costs of providing a home for our international students. If you would like to host an international student, or would like further information about hosting, please contact Portland Christian Schools at 503-256-3960 and ask to speak to the Host Family Coordinator.
Note: Student's parents or guardians may make other hosting arrangements if desired.