At Save A Child International, a reputable children’s charitable organization in Atlanta, Georgia, we help sick, underprivileged children and families from Sub-Saharan Africa. We do this by bringing them over to the United States so that they can get the care and treatment they need.
Once here in the U.S., we set them up with a host family. Host families are composed of dedicated volunteers who open their own homes to these children and families and give them a place to stay.
What Does It Take to Be a Great Host Family?
Hosting a family can be a new and challenging task. Many people don’t know what to expect which may lead to different misunderstandings. However, if you are determined to provide accommodation and logistic support for these children when they come over for treatment here in the U.S., here are some tips to consider:
- Tip #1: Have a simple welcome party for their arrival
Make them more welcome by preparing a simple welcome party for their arrival. Even something as simple as a “Welcome!” banner is great. You can also prepare welcome kits containing useful information, such as important addresses and phone numbers, public transportation maps, translation dictionaries, and more.
- Tip #2: Be patient
It will take some adjustments on both your ends. While it may be challenging for you to welcome new people into your home, remember that these children and families are feeling overwhelmed too. Be patient and understanding of their situation.
- Tip #3: Communicate
Take the initiative to speak with the family that you are hosting. Open and honest communication is a cornerstone of a successful host-family relationship. The more you go out of your way to communicate with the family you are hosting, the greater your relationship will become.
- Tip #4: Respect their privacy
Their bedroom needs to be respected as a private space. Knock before entering and let them know if you need to go in there when they are not at home. Respect their boundaries. Remember to always treat them with the utmost dignity and respect.
- Tip #5: Take the time to get to know them and their culture
While they are here to get the treatment they need, they may also be eager to share their culture with you. This is an amazing opportunity for you and your family to learn about a different culture. Take the time to get to know the people you are hosting. Ask them about their culture, traditions, festivals, and holidays.
Do you want to become a host family? As one of the leading African children’s charities in Georgia, we would love to hear from you. Also, feel free to give us your thoughts about the tips listed above.