Our home hosting program invites international visitors into the homes of local volunteers for evenings of food and friendship. Visitors often rank these evenings as the most enjoyable experience during their time in the country.
There are no real rules to follow when hosting. The most important thing is to do what you are comfortable doing. Some hosts prefer backyard barbecues, while others choose more formal dinner parties. Relax and be yourself. Invite friends and family members to share in the experience.
Some Things to Know Ahead of Time
Generally, you will need to arrange to pick up the visitors and return them to the hotel at the end of the evening.
Provide dinner and discussion in your home (not in a restaurant).
A formal dinner is not required. Some dinners are casual with typical American hamburgers and hot dogs on the grill. Another might be a sample of American Thanksgiving specialties.
You set the tone for the evening. If you let our office know what is the appropriate dress for your evening of home hosting, we can pass that information on to the visitors.
Connecting with Your Visitors
Encourage the visitors to talk about their lives and culture.
Think about things we have in common with all people such as family, holidays, birthdays, sports, games, music, travel, food, school.
Check out the Country Profiles – Guides to Culture, Etiquette, Customs and Protocol www.kwintessential.co.uk and click on the information cue about the country you are hosting to learn a little about the visitors’ culture.
Share photo albums about your children and grandchildren. They may bring pictures to share with you about their families. It is a great icebreaker.
Encourage your children to participate in the evening. Dinner will be memorable for them and enjoyable for the visitors.
Support We Can Provide You
NTCIV staff are here to provide information and support to help make the evening as enjoyable as possible. We will provide:
- Biographies of the guests you will be hosting
- Dietary information on the visitors
- Helpful information for the culture and country you are hosting