On Tuesday, June 14th, our province welcomed 177 Ukrainian refugees.
It was the second airlift to bring refugees to NL, the first having come on May 9th, carrying 166 passengers.
Welcoming the Newcomers
Newfoundland has earned a reputation for being welcoming and kind to friends, family, and strangers- a reputation that has continued through many generations (an open-door policy, if you will).
Our new Ukrainian residents are no exception. They have been welcomed with open arms and are starting to settle in with their new host families. But how did these families know to get involved? Where did they volunteer?
For many years, NL has been known to take in international students to attend our high schools. Many families have gotten involved and hosted students in their homes for 1-2 years.
But many hosting programs are seeking placements for students of varying ages. Hosting isn’t restricted to international high school students, and it can be the opportunity of a lifetime for university/college students coming from away and unable to stay in residence.
NL Hosting Program
Home.internationalNL is an organization that offers a program where NL households can apply to host an international student. It is a premiere educational recruitment service and a certified recruitment agent with the Newfoundland and Labrador English School District (NLESD).
Students from all across the world can submit applications through the program. Countries including:
Melissa Humphries, the owner and operator of Home.internationalNL, has been working extra hard to prepare for the international students flying in for the upcoming school year.
“I deal with all from high school to university to college,” said Humphries
But what about an increase in Ukrainian applicants? Has the current climate in Ukraine affected the rate of Ukrainian students applying through her program to study in NL?
“Yes. Massively,” She said.
Taking in an international student can be a learning experience for the student and the host family.
Anton Tsviliak, an international student from Ukraine, recently arrived in NL and moved in with his host family.
When I asked about his experience so far, he stated,
“It’s been great! Melissa’s program has made it much easier to live away from my family. It has allowed me to make great connections with other international students and Newfoundlanders, like my host family.”
Melissa greatly benefits the students being hosted, including free gym memberships and yoga classes. Plus, there are opportunities to get together with other students hosted within the province.
***For more information on how to get involved, visit the Home.International website at https://homeinternationalnl.ca/ ***