Last weekend we had our first host family training for Christmas 2011. It was a great event and I loved meeting all of our parents who drove great distances to attend!  Here are some of the resources I mentioned during the training and I would highly recommend to any family who is preparing to host an orphan this Christmas. 

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English Teaching Resources
Remember to incorporate some sort of English lesson everyday.

  • Live Mocha
    Popular with other host families and free!
  • Oxford Picture Dictionary
    Monolingual – Just English, so it can be used for someone speaking any language.
    Russian – To teach Russian to English speakers or English to Russian speakers.

Translation/Interpretation Suggestions

  • Google Translate
    Remember to use these substitutions when writing to your host child in English:
    you = thou
    your = thine
    By far, my favorite translation site.  There’s new features everyday!

Fun Stuff

  • Find a Bible
    Find Bibles and Christian materials in any language.
  • The Jesus Film
    This is the website where you can stream “The Jesus Film” in nearly any language.
    Website for the shirt I wore, anything you order from this page will go towards my family’s adoption fund.
  • The Italian
    Great movie about life in E European orphanages, based on a true story!  This could be a good way for your family to prepare for hosting, NOT to watch with the host kids. [link to playlist of clips we showed]
  • Get Smart
    Could be a good pick for movie night with your teenage host boys. PG 13 for some violence and minor language. I like it because it’s pretty clean and funny overall and is set in Russia, so there’s several scenes that are spoken in Russian.

Media Contact
Our story in the local paper!Now’s the time to start contacting your local papers/news stations to see if they’d be interested in sharing your hosting story with the media!
A simple email like this could work well –

Looking for a special human interest story for the summer?
My family (Your Name) of City, State will be having a Latvian/Ukrainian orphan spend Christmas with us, for a total of 5 weeks – include dates. This is a part of a group called New Horizons for Children which will be bringing 180+ school aged Eastern European orphans to spend the holidays with families across the country, five of these children will arrive at the Name of Airport airport on date. Please contact us if you would like more info!

Recommended Reads
Here are a few books I would personally highly recommend reading before hosting!

And remember… Yellow Blue Bus! (I love you!)