Nonprofits to bring German exchange students to Rappahannock. They need places to live
More than a dozen German high school students will spend two weeks in Rappahannock County in April through a partnership between the Headwaters Foundation, the Rappahannock County Public Education Foundation, and Youth For Understanding, a Washington, D.C.-based nonpro t specializing in international youth exchange.
The students will be visiting the United States for the rst time and are excited to learn about America through a Rappahannock County lens, Headwaters Executive Director Birttany Dwyer said in a news release.
During their two weeks in Rappahannock, students will learn about American volunteerism and community service. They will visit high school classes, learn about the lives of American teens and board with local families. Their visit will conclude with a tour of Washington, D.C.
Headwaters is seeking county residents to consider hosting one or more students from the program. Host families open their homes to students and provide a room, meals, and supportive oversight for a meaningful short-term intercultural experience, the news release said. Students participate in activities with Headwaters during the weekdays, and are with the host family in the evenings and on weekends.
The students will be in Rappahannock from April
1-14. Those interested in serving as a host family, contact Headwaters Vice-Chair, YFU board member, and Rappahannock resident Bill Dant at 202-579-6105, Rappahannock resident and YFU Vice-Chair Larry Wohlers at 202-247-5879, or Headwaters at 540-227-5170 for more information.
“Hosting an international exchange student is truly an amazing experience,” Wohlers said in a statement. “You get to experience everything around you - what is so normal that you don’t even think about it - through a new set of eyes. It can be quite surprising. In fact, we o en nd that the host families end up being just as excited about the visit as the exchange student.”
The students’ travel and program is overseen by Youth For Understanding (YFU), which helps young people discover intercultural opportunities through living and studying abroad. In fact, YFU is already known to many Rappahannock residents who have previously hosted YFU exchange students for a full school year, according to Dwyer.
Dant is an alumnus of two exchange programs. In a statement he stressed the impact and value of international exchange: “My 15 months as an exchange student in France and then Germany planted an important seed for my career– but beyond that, the interaction with people who experience the world in di erent ways o ered me valuable appreciation for other ways of thinking and living.”