Youth for Understanding Seeking Host Families for Foreign Students

Youth for Understanding Seeking Host Families for Foreign Students

Has your family ever wondered about the culture from another country?  Are you a “teen-friendly” home?  Would you like to share a once-in-a-lifetime experience with someone that you could have a life-long connection to because of it?


Youth For Understanding (YFU) offers the opportunity to do these things and more by hosting an international teenager!  


Our program runs from August until June so that is when students arrive & depart. All students are between 15-18 years old. Many families host while they have teens at the high school level, but so do families with both younger & older children. Many of our students truly enjoy having either older or younger siblings, or being the “only child” and not having to share mom and/or dad’s attention. Host families can be married couples with or without children or single parent homes with or without children.


Here is a brief introduction to some of the students that are waiting to find out where they will be arriving to in August. They are listed with their first name, age & country.


YFU host families are volunteer families who are not compensated for hosting. Please check us out at

If you simply have questions or just want to learn more about YFU, I am available to talk at the Pennsylvania Field Office at 856-543-4967 at your convenience. I look forward to seeing your application and working with you to find the perfect student for your family.


Iris Franklin

PA Field Director 

Youth For Understanding USA

(p) 856-543-4967 |


See some of the young people seeking host families:

Iris from Finland: (16 year old girl; flight date 8/23)
Iris is a very social person. She and her parents spend time together doing sports and going to cultural events together. Iris loves her family and home life yet she still yearns to live overseas. “Going on exchange has always been a dream of mine. And to be more specific: the USA has always been THE dream,” she writes. “I love to dance, because I can express myself and my emotions through it. I feel happy and little more artistic.” Dance and going to the gym are two of her favorite activities. She also loves to see movies and spend time with her friends doing outdoor activities like swimming, biking, etc. English, psychology, and social studies are her favorite school subjects. “Thank you for opening your home to me and even considering having me in your family. It is a huge thing for me and I will be honored to be a part of your family.”

Laura from Sweden: (17 year old girl; flight date tbd)

Laura’s friends call her the “world’s happiest and funniest girl.” She is goal oriented at school with the long term objective of owning her own business. Laura has been taking dance classes for eight years as a way to keep active and have fun with friends She also recently started playing rugby. Since she has a love of photography, Laura hopes to take a photography class in the USA along with perhaps trying out a sport or continuing dance. Laura and her friends often watch movies or go shopping together. Her family eats dinner together, travels together, and enjoys being active through sports, school and work. Laura has a close relationship with her two older brothers even though they both have moved out. She is inspired by them and appreciates being able to always count on them. She can’t wait to improve her English and learn more about American life with her new family! “I am very excited about my year abroad and would be glad to spend this time with you guys and become a part of your family!”

Thore from Germany: (17 year old boy ; flight date tbd)

Needing a cat-free home, Thore plays the guitar, practices Taekwondo, belongs to Scouts, and enjoys recreational sports like skiing, swimming, and sailing. At home he likes to read and listens to music. Thore lives with his parents, older brother and younger sister. On weekends, they enjoy hiking, sightseeing, meeting up with friends, or going on trips. “We like to do things together and we accept each other as we are.” Thore’s mother was an exchange student, and inspired Thore to try the experience for himself. Thore has heard a lot about the American school system, and cannot wait to choose his own electives and participate in school sports. Thore’s favorite subjects are math and biology. Thore’s teachers say that he is friendly, easy-going and makes friends easily. His friends say he is helpful, social, talkative and positive. Thore can’t wait to meet you and your family! He writes, “I hope we both will enjoy this time together and I want to learn a lot about you and your country.”

Ruiwei (Emily) from China: (16 year old girl; flight date tbd; must be placed by end of July to attend the Culture and Language Camp)

Ruiwei, who goes by Emily, wants to be a journalist to “Broaden my horizons”! She is currently a student reporter for a local radio station and absolutely loves it! Emily loves animals and has a dog of her own at home. Emily is close to her parents and likes to bike out to the countryside with them and her dog when theres time. She also enjoys staying home and watching movies with them. She volunteers in her community to help foreign tourists who speak English. She is also the teachers assistant in her English class and helps to facilitate discussion between her peers and the teacher. Emily is described as kind and easy to get along with by her friends. Emily is looking forward to becoming a member of your family.

Passawut (Will) from Thailand: (15 year old boy; Flight date 8/25)

Lights, Camera, Action!!! This is what Passawut (nicknamed Will) from Thailand dreams his future career path will take him on. Will is already planning a career in film directing. He is looking forward to new experiences and learning new skills. Will has a great relationship with his family. His family’s lifestyle is relaxed and some of their favorite pastimes include outdoor activities at a local park. They have monthly visits with his extended family at his grandparents’ house. Will describes himself as determined to succeed, active, and creative. He is a well-rounded young man who is member of a short film club and has a myriad of other hobbies including listening to music, eating out with family, photography, swimming, badminton, and spending time with his friends. Will helps out at home by cleaning his room and washing his own clothes. His teachers write that Will is hardworking, self-motivating, and has excellent organizational skills. Will has studied English since childhood and it continues to be his favorite subject in school.

Katariina from Estonia:  (18 year old girl; Flight date 8/17)  Sporty Katariina runs track and plays team sports. She is social, caring, and energetic and loves to make people happy and laugh. With an artistic side and a love for art, architecture and design, she enjoys photography and decorating her home. During her exchange year, she writes, “I am open to anything really. Maybe a new sport?” At school Katariina is a creative problem solver and for the last two years, participated in a school group that organizes events. A passionate animal lover, Katariina is vegan and will not eat any animal products including dairy and eggs. She is accustomed to planning meals and cooking for herself, though. With her family’s lifestyle being both relaxed and busy, Katariina makes time for joking around or taking their two dogs to the forest or beach.