UNESCO's International Literacy Day was September 8. In support of this, the Cameroon YES Alumni Association (CYAA) organized "Books For All Kids" on September 30. Atem Nkeng-Asong (2013-14 YES-Cameroon/Pueblo, CO) was an integral part of this initiative, which took place in his community of Dschang. This event collected books for underprivileged students at a local bilingual school. Atem spoke eloquently about the importance of increasing literacy and English language proficiency amongst schoolchildren.
American Councils Leads the Way in Exchange Policy
On September 16, Executive Vice President of American Councils Lisa Choate and American Councils Local Coordinator Erin Knowles (Calvert County, Maryland) teamed up with The Alliance for International Exchange to present at the International Exchange and Study Caucus of the U.S. House of Representatives on the importance of both exchange and raising the host family tax deduction.
2015-2016 FLEX student Polina Lynova from Kazakhstan was welcomed to her U.S. host community not only by her host family, but also by a reporter with her local newspaper, The Scranton Times. Polina has been in the U.S. for two weeks attending an English language camp in Alabama before departing for her permanent host family on Monday, August 10th. Her Local Coordinator arranged for Polina to speak with someone at the local newspaper to help welcome her into her community.
FLEX Student Hosts Russian Poetry/Literature Night
2014-2015 FLEX-Russia student Yekaterina Sysoyeva hosted "An Evening of Russian Poetry" at Calvert Library, Twin Beaches Branch in Calvert, MD. She collaborated with Megan Timmens, Public Services Librarian at the branch, who also hosted a FLEX student (from Kazakhstan), to create a program of Ancient to Modern poetry. She selected several of the poems and worked with Megan to get additional readers for the event.
YES Students Visit the Capitol to Celebrate End of Year
Each year, the YES program holds End-of-Stay events in Washington, DC to prepare students to return to their home countries. This year, the YES program celebrated its 11th year of programming with events that included Senator Lugar, who helped start the Kennedy-Lugar YES program, and Kal Penn, the popular actor and civil servant who has worked closely with President Obama.
From the Archives: American Councils Host Families Share Their Experiences
From the archives: American Councils host families speak about the long-term impact of hosting on their families and on their communities in this Huffington Post article. In the words of one of our returning host families: "You can do it! You will never forget the school year these students spend with you. It is so exciting to greet them, and so sad to see them go.
Going Home, We're Not Going to Stop! (American Councils)
Why host? Listen to students reflect on their American experience and how their exchange year has encouraged them to make changes in their home communities. Discover the magic of opening your home to cultural youth ambassadors and future leaders!
Kwa pamoja tunaweza! Let's Do It Together! (American Councils)
Why host? Watch one family reveal their decision to jump in and open their home for the first time to an exchange student. A school administrator also discusses the impact a YES student had on her US high school and student body.