Montana Rotary Exchanges bridge the world through their youth exchange program as students travel to foreign lands to be Ambassadors of peace for Rotary. If you think you would like to be a good representative for Rotary International, download the long term application and give it to your local club Youth Exchange officer or club president. The club officers will interview students and parents in their area and then submit it to the District Chair. When approved by the local club, the students paperwork will be sent to the District to determine if they are eligible for an exchange. However, local clubs can only sponsor one student per club as they are required to receive a student in your area for exchange. The student handbook outlines the program which can also be downloaded from the Rotary international website. www.rotary.org.
Here are the steps for students interested in Youth Exchange:
1. Discuss with parents and review all information on youth exchange on the www.rotary.org website. Make sure you understand the program details. Students are responsible for all costs associated with travel abroad including passport, visa, insurance, airfare and miscellaneous expenses. A fee is charged to families to process paperwork, orientation and other costs associated with setting up the long term exchange. Short term exchanges cost less. This fee is collected only when the student has been selected by the District and matched with an area.
2. Download the long term application and complete and give it your local Rotary club in your area. If there is no Rotary club in your area, you can contact the District Chair to get more information about local club near your area. The clubs interview the students and family and send the application to the District chair. A second, in person, district level interview will be held to select the final students. Deadline for long term applications to be submitted to your local Rotary club is November 15th of this school year. The District level interview for applicants and their parents will be held on December 15, 2012.
3. Remember that this is an exchange for exchange program and you will be asked to host a student. For long term exchanges we recruit at least two families to host the student throughout the year. This is the hardest task is to find good host families for inbound students in exchange for your going overseas to another family. They do not have to be a Rotary member to house a student. All families will have to submit applications, background checks and interviewed by Rotarian YE chair for their club.
4. Keep in mind that you may not get a choice in where you go so be open to new cultures. If you have strong language training, we will try to place you in the places where you can improve on those skills. There will be five districts with which our Rotary District will conduct exchanges. For more information on our District Youth Exchange, contact District Governor Daryl Hansen at email@example.com.