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host family tips: how to say "see you later"

Saying goodbye to your exchange student who has become a family member is tough - read some tips on how host families ease the transition.

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Hear from our new EF Regional Coordinator Jason and his wife Jenny about their first experience hosting two exchange students at the same time:

Get Involved in Your Community

New Year’s resolutions have come and gone, and warmer weather has people antsy to spring into action. Why not add serving others to that bucket list? Giving back matters. Here at EF, we have our annual EF Service Day

Service learning is an excellent way for teens to carve out their role in society, and how their time and talents can impact the world around them. Whether the service is to complete service hours for school or scouting, or from purely wanting to do good in the community, here are a few ideas for teens (or anyone!) to explore:

On April 22, in celebration of Earth Day and its mission to broaden and diversify the environmental movement worldwide, EF High School Exchange students, families and coordinators across the nation will be participating in a local day of service. We'll be cleaning up gardens, planting seeds, preserving waterways and more, and we want you to join us in showing Mother Earth some love!

Here are some ways you can get involved, both locally and with our EF Family! 

1. Go green  Ditch the plastic water bottles, commute by public transportation or carpool, and don't forget your reusable shopping bags when you go to pick up the week's groceries - on your bike!

2. Plant a tree  Our planet is currently losing over 15 billion trees each year —that’s 56 acres of forest every minute. Did you know that one large tree can supply a full day's of oxygen for four people? Get planting!

3. Clean up a local park or waterway In a year, the average American residence uses over 100,000 gallons of water. Conserve your intake by turning off the water when you brush your teeth (up to 8 gallons a day), fixing the leaking faucet (up to 3,000 gallons a year) or making sure that running toilet is fixed (up to 200 gallons a day). Our waterways provide us life. 

4. Have a waste-free-week  challenge your friends and family to produce as little trash as possible. Cut out the to-go containers in favor of reusable containers. Eat smaller portions so food waste is curbed. 

5. Grow your own garden Many animal and plant species are going extinct at a faster rate than ever as a result of global human activity. Gardens provide food, shelter and a habitat for many species, as well as the opportunity to create a fresh and organic meal free of chemicals. 



These local volunteering services are a part of EF High School Exchange Year’s national efforts to build a healthy, sustainable environment and give back to the communities in which our students, host families and local coordinators live. With more than 5,000 active people in the US EF High School Exchange Year community, we can make a difference!

Be sure to join in on the fun on Saturday April 22, and share your own plans for local community action. Don't forget to share your photos using #EFServiceDay on Facebook and Instagram

Want to learn more about getting involved with the EF family?
LEARN MORE
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As a host family, it's not uncommon to find yourself wondering how to provide the best experience possible; how to make the year special 
Sure the days are shorter and the nights are colder, but just because you can’t hit the beach
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