---- — We would like to thank those who participated in the Rotary Youth Exchange Program and contributed columns to the Cooperstown Crier. You all had wonderful stories to tell about your time spent overseas and we appreciate the time and effort you took to share those experiences with members of your local community. We hope you all had a great time and have a smooth adjustment back home.
The purpose of the Rotary Youth Exchange program is to build bridges of friendship and understanding among the peoples of the world. This is accomplished by allowing high school students to live for a year in a foreign country, assimilating their host country’s culture and language, and being ambassadors of goodwill while they are there.
The program is open to children of Rotarians and non-Rotarians.
According to rotary-youth-exchange.com, students live overseas with one to four host families, attend a local school, and immerse in a “totally new culture.” The website says more than 8,000 high school students participate in the Rotary Youth Exchange Program worldwide. The program sends students to places such as Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Poland, Slovakia, Sweden, Taiwan and Thailand.
We would like to welcome those students who were away back while wishing nothing but good and safe adventures to those who are just preparing to start their life changing journey. It is not an easy adjustment, but from what we have read and heard it is well-worth getting out of one’s comfort zone. As always we hope those planning going overseas will continue the tradition we have started writing columns for the Crier.
If you are interested in participating, contact Michelle Miller at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would love to share your stories.