Picnic in the Park

HOMESTAY

If you are considering coming to Australia and would like to immerse into the Australian-way as quickly as you can, then you should choose to live with a homestay family.

Homestay is perfect for those with limited time and budget but still want to maximise the experience of living as a local in a foreign country. Your homestay family will provide your meals and a place to stay, whilst you get busy with school and your new circle of friends. More importantly, you will be treated as part of the family and of course, you'd be expected to do your part in helping around the house with the chores too!

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT HOMESTAY

From the perspective of             

                 an International Student

What are some of the challenges that an international student face in a foreign country? Language barrier, culture shock and homesickness would be some of the more common issues. Living with a homestay family can help alleviate some of these challenges.  Living with your homestay family can be a beautiful experience, as you now have a ‘home’ away from home. 

These are some of the benefits of being part of the homestay programme:

 

  1. Get acquainted with the locals through your Australian family. It can be a weekend outing, or a run to the grocery shops or even a cuppa at your local café. Don’t forget to greet your neighbours in the morning or when you take a jog around the park.

  2. Your homestay family gives you a safe environment to learn the language. You can make mistakes and your homestay family won’t judge you. Instead, they can help you with your vocabulary and sentence structure and in time, you will improve so much quicker.  You might even pick up the Australian slang!

  3. You don’t have to worry about paying all sorts of bills, like electricity, water, gas or internet connection. You can have all of your mails from the school, bank, mobile provider and relevant departments sent to a permanent address.

  4. You don’t have to worry about what to eat or how to prepare your meals. You can enjoy a warm meal in the company of your Australian family. You can help around the kitchen and learn to cook a variety of cuisines.

  5. Gain first-hand experience in cultural awareness and exchange. You will find that it is a very different experience from just reading about the Australian culture. Whilst you are at it, you can create beautiful memories with the people around you.

Smiling Student
Family Portrait

From the perspective of                                               a Homestay Host

Inviting a stranger into your home can be a daunting step. However, you can be pleasantly surprised with how the experience can turn out for you and your family. A foreign student living with you and your family under one roof can be both intriguing and exciting. These are some of the things you can look forward to as a homestay host:

 

  1. Experience cultural exchange and learn about your foreign student’s home, background, way of living and food! You will be surprised what you can explore in the kitchen by learning a new cuisine or simply chill on a Friday evening with a classic foreign movie!

  2. Appreciate your own culture and way of living as you promote that to an international student who may have dreamt of coming to Australia for a long time, and is finally here, in your living room! If you have young children, you can encourage a two-way learning experience that is rewarding for cultural awareness and personal growth.

  3. Fill in the emptiness or quietness of your home especially when your kids are away at university, and you’d like to provide the opportunity of raising another kid who’s going to study in Australia. You can provide a safe and conducive environment for the student to thrive in a new environment.

  4. You can make a little extra cash on the side if you have a spare room in your home and would like to have the additional company in your day-to-day activities or at your dinner table.

  5. You can build long lasting relationships through being a great host. Who knows, you can visit your newfound family across the globe one day!

Expectations of the

                    Student

When you live with a homestay family, you will be treated as a member of the family. Therefore, it is common courtesy to always maintain cleanliness of the house as well as observe the rules within the household. You will be expected to be tolerant, understanding and have mutual respect for each member of the family. Generally, you are expected to:

  • Greet one another in the mornings or when either party returns home from work or from school.

  • Help with the basic house chores, like doing the dishes or taking the thrash out.

  • Do you own laundry, clean your own room and maintain a clean bathroom and other commonly shared areas.

  • Help prepare meals in the kitchen by participating in simple tasks such as cutting vegetables or cleaning after.

  • Notify or seek approval from your host in advance on matters affecting prior commitments with your family for e.g., if you are not having dinner with your host.

  • Seek permission from your host if you intend to bring a friend home, or if you intend to add a large item or permanent fixture in your bedroom.

  • Let your host know immediately if you have broken something or have run into trouble.

  • Be considerate at all times and be conscious of house-rules, for e.g. learn to be water-wise and be moderate in using resources or when having your meals.

If you are unsure of anything, it is always best to ask, rather than remain quiet.

Remember, respect, communication and understanding will help both parties go a long way.

Fourth of July

Expectations of the

        Homestay Host

 

Am I eligible to be a host family?

We welcome traditional families, non-traditional families and single individuals who are willing to share their daily life with an international student and care for their basic needs within the household.  As a minimum, you should be able to:

  • Provide a clean and comfortable bedroom with appropriate heating or ventilation. The bedroom should have access to the toilet and bathroom, and should come with a study desk and lamp, bookshelf and clothes cabinet.

  • Provide 2 meals a day on weekdays and 3 meals on weekends.

  • Use English as your primary language of communicate at home. You are encouraged to help your student improve his or her command of English when you converse with him or her on a day-to-day.

  • Assist your student in settling into the new environment, providing a comfortable and safe platform that is conducive for him or her to learn.

  • Include your student in the daily routines at home through conversations, support and other relevant activities.

  • Help your student to organise some basic but important activities such as setting up a bank account, getting around with public transport or getting an appropriate mobile telecommunications provider.

  • Swiftly respond to your student in case of an emergency requiring medical or dental attention.

  • Consent to obtaining the Australian Federal Police Clearance and Working with Children Certificate (when you are hosting under 18 students).

  • Provide all relevant documentation required for us to review your suitability to become a host family.