Today's Scholars. Tomorrow's Leaders.

Host Families FAQs

Thank you for your interest in hosting an ASSIST Scholar. Please contact the ASSIST Representative at your school, or the ASSIST office  if your questions are not answered below.

How do we become a host family?

The ASSIST Representative at each member school is responsible for initial recruitment of host families. Once nominated, families are asked to submit host family application forms to ASSIST (available for download here). ASSIST processes and reviews applications, and conducts criminal background checks for each household member age 18 and over. The school's ASSIST Representative conducts in-person interviews with all family members residing in the home, and contacts you regarding acceptance as a host family.

Where will our student come from, and how is he or she selected?

ASSIST students are selected with great care, sometimes from more than 20 different countries around the world, through competitive national scholarship competitions in each country. After initial prescreening by leaders in those countries, ASSIST interview teams typically spend ten or more weeks interviewing finalists overseas. We seek students with impressive academic credentials, strong spoken and written English skills, engaging personalities, talents that can be shared in extracurricular programs, and pride in their cultures.

How long will we host the student?

A family hosts a student for up to ten months, but you may host for a shorter period. You have the option of hosting for a half year, a semester, or during vacation periods, determined on a case-by-case basis.

What is the financial commitment for a host family?

ASSIST Scholars are expected to finance out-of-pocket expenses. However, host families incur some additional expenses related to having a teenager join their family, such as meals, entertainment and fuel. ASSIST host families are considered volunteers and are not paid. However, you may be eligible for a $50.00 per month tax deduction for the hosting period.

What happens if our student gets sick or is injured?

All ASSIST students must be covered by a health insurance plan throughout their exchange year, including medical expenses such as doctor visits, x-rays, hospitalization, etc. Most students elect to use the plan offered by ASSIST, but a few students elect to be covered by other plans. Prior to hosting, ASSIST provides each host family with information regarding their student’s health insurance coverage.

What kind of support will our family receive while we are hosting?

Prior to their student’s arrival, each host family receives a welcome/orientation information packet from ASSIST. ASSIST staff and the designated ASSIST Representative at the host school will be available for support to both the student and the host family throughout the hosting period.

An ASSIST Representative checks in with both the student and host family monthly, to offer support and guidance and to ensure that the hosting experience is progressing well. ASSIST staff members are available via phone 24 hours a day if necessary (860-668-5706).

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