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Host Families

International Student Program
As a host family, you play a crucial role in your international student’s experience here. 

Grand Rapids Christian High School, partnering agencies, the sending parents, and the host family work together as a team to oversee the student’s education and provide Christian care. We will rely on your loving care, parental discernment, and professional communication.

Why do families open their homes to international students? There are many reasons. Some feel called by God to use their homes as a ministry and provide care for students who are far away from their own family. Others see it as a way to bring the world into their homes and learn about a different language and culture while sharing their own.

We are committed to providing good homes for our international students and matching them with families who will offer the best possible environment for them while they are here. 

We are looking for families who can:

  • provide a safe and happy home environment
  • provide emotional and spiritual support
  • foster regular connections with the school community and a church community
  • support the student as he or she learns to adjust to American culture
  • encourage the student to share culture, language, and traditions
  • develop a meaningful relationship with the student as you would your own child
  • have high expectations for academic work and social responsibility
  • communicate meaningfully with the sending family, partnering agency, and school
  • partner with other host families to provide a good support network



  • We have students from more than 10 countries enrolled in all grades of the high school. 
  • Many students come with the intention of graduating from Grand Rapids Christian High School, while some attend for just one year. Many of our host families accommodate students for multiple years, but your commitment is only for one school year, and you can choose to continue or not.
  • We provide ongoing support services for host families, including providing temporary hosts for a weekend or break if necessary.
  • You can request a preference for hosting a male or female student. Some families choose to host two students.
  • Busing will be paid for by the sending family if it is necessary.
  • As a host family, you will receive a monthly stipend of $900 for 10 months to cover additional costs. All personal items are to be purchased by the student. If you plan to take a vacation the sending family will be requested to cover the student’s costs.
  • You do not need to have a high school student of your own in order to host. If you have a teenager at home we will place an international student of the same gender in your home.
  • We encourage families to consider accepting two students to live with them if it suits their circumstances.


If you are interested in becoming a host family for an international student or would like to learn more, please contact the Director and complete the online Host Family Application.



Program Director

Joelle Williams

Skype: live:jwilliams_1485
We-Chat: JAWilliams
WhatsApp: 616-717-2909

Program Assistant Director

Julie Watson