Students looking for hosts

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 18 August, 1998, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 18 August, 1998, 12:00am

When it comes to teenagers, it seems local families prefer girls to boys.

That is what American Field Service (AFS) Inter-cultural Exchanges has discovered during its search for host homes for overseas exchange students arriving in Hong Kong for the 1998-99 academic year.

Thirty-two students will be arriving shortly and host families are still needed for four boys from Europe. AFS hosting co-ordinator Janet Shum said Chinese parents thought living with and taking care of teenage girls was easier.

'But we find that this is not necessarily the case, with the boys making just as much effort as the girls to have a harmonious home life,' Ms Shum said.

Two of the students needing host families have interests that focus on the kitchen. Mattia Bianchi, 16, from Italy, is hoping to teach his host family some Italian cooking, while 17-year-old Pekka Koskimaki, from Finland, is more interested in learning Chinese cooking.

Belgian Stephen Dhoedt, 17, is keen on learning about Chinese culture through arts, music and films.

Fredrik Karlsson, 17, from Sweden, is interested in Asian history and he would like to live with a musically-minded family, as he plays the saxophone.

Ms Shum said it is not necessary for suitable families to have a spacious living environment, just the love and support they would offer a permanent family member.

Host families provide meals and accommodation while AFS pays for tuition fees, books and transportation to school.

If you can help, or would like further information, call Ms Shum at AFS Inter-cultural Exchanges on 2802-0383, or fax 2802-4181.