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Latest News

Here comes the sun (we hope)

by: UKguests on 19th Jun, 2015

small_20160812-154214Make your summer sizzle.jpg Although we can't guarantee the sun, we can hopefully brighten your day with good news and lots to look forward to. This summer is set to be our busiest yet as the number of requests for hosts to accommodate younger students (aged under 18) continues to increase. In addition, UKguests is very happy to announce that we have been awarded registration with the British Council as a provider of homestay accommodation for adults and under 18s. This, along with our English UK Corporate Membership, will see us working with even more accredited providers and international agents, and schools and agents around the world will recognise us as an approved provider of homestay accommodation for their students. So tell all your friends - there has never been a better time to be a homestay host! What's more - we've listened to you and packed this newsletter with everything you've been asking us about - from information on DBS checks and hosting younger students, to tips for giving students a warm welcome and simple summer supper ideas to help with your meal planning. All we need now is the weather...

Make your summer sizzle

We know that one thing our hosts are always on the look out for are new ideas for meal plans. No one wants to be stuck in a hot kitchen on a nice summer's day so here are a few of our favourite fast summer supper ideas:

-No need to wait for the carnival - bring summer street food to your table with these fab fish tacos from Rachel Ray

-We love this 'no-bake' summer lasagne recipe from Martha Stewart - and you can even follow this handy fool-proof video

-Want to impress your student with your culinary skills? Fancy getting more creative in the kitchen while catering to everyone's tastes? Jamie Oliver's website has a handy 'recipe' drop-down menu that lets you choose recipes based on everything from the ingredients you have, to special diets and age-range. Check it out here.
And, of course, you could always get the BBQ out - the NHS has put together a great guide to BBQ safety. So stay safe, eat well and enjoy the sunshine...

Have you had an enhanced DBS check?

As you may already be aware, in order to be a homestay host to younger students (aged 18 and under), you need to have had an enhanced DBS check in the last three years.

If you have please do get in touch as we may have younger students who we could place with you. We've put more information about hosting younger students on our website.

If you haven't had an enhanced DBS check in the last three years but would like to be a host to younger students, we can apply on your behalf at a cost of 55 pounds and this will last for three years.

With the increase in students requesting homestay accommodation and our recent registrations, we are keen to recruit more homestay hosts.

If you know someone who would make a great host, they can apply via our website or call us for an informal initial chat on 020 8558 4466.

Tips for a warm welcome - whatever the weather
This summer we are celebrating our recent 'registrations' and we couldn't have got them without you - our fantastic homestay hosts. As this means an increasing number of students choosing UKguests homestay accommodation, we thought it would be a great time to share some of your suggestions for giving them a warm welcome:

"We made a guest book with family photos, a map of the house, mealtimes etc and presented it to our student as a welcoming present. Our children decorated it to give it a homemade fun feel and we added blank pages for our student to fill with information about themselves and their time here. It was a nice way to give them a lot of information without being overwhelming and gave them something to refer to if they forgot anything and felt too shy to ask."

"We noticed that our student was quiet during family dinner times so we asked her what was wrong. She was a little embarrassed but explained that family meal times were when she felt most homesick. I'm really glad we spoke to her as we then started having dinner less formally - at staggered times when we got in (which is what we'd often do normally) - this seemed to make it less intense and she was soon settled and over her homesickness."

"We asked our student to tell us about some of their customs and to teach us words and phrases too. Although they were here to learn about us - and they did - we felt it really helped them to settle in and feel like a valued member of the household."

You can find more advice on everything from curfews to coping with homesickness in our Homestay Hosts Handbook. And we wish you, your families and our students your best summer yet!

Victoria

I think that it is a good idea that international students live in a British family when they come to England. In this way, students can learn English more easily and practise it all the time.