Brock community encouraged to host international students over holiday break

From sharing special dinners to watching holiday movies, ice skating to tobogganing, the holidays are filled with festive activities amongst friends and family. This year, the Brock community is encouraged to start a new tradition by inviting an international student to their home for the holidays.

For a growing number of international students at Brock, this time of year can be difficult. With the rising cost of travel and increased travel restrictions related to the COVID-19 pandemic, many will not make the journey home and will remain in Canada thousands of kilometres away from their loved ones.

The Home for the Holidays program connects international students with Brock faculty or staff over the winter break, from Monday, Dec. 20 to Tuesday, Jan. 4, to ensure no student is left behind to spend the holiday season alone.

Kyla Pennie, Associate Director, Internationalization and Support Services, said she was hopeful for a return to more normalcy during the winter holiday break, but recent development of the new COVID-19 omicron variant and revised travel requirements have created a state of uncertainty.

“Home for the Holidays is an opportunity to ensure that our Brock students not only have the opportunity to experience Niagara hospitality but also to have a sense of sincere belonging as part of our global community,” she said. “I hope the Brock community is open to sharing their homes and traditions with our students with the aim of recuperation and restoration of good health as we head into 2022.”

The program is encouraging the community to come together safely by adhering to public health guidelines of local authorities and by ensuring all participants in the program are fully vaccinated.

Faculty and staff interested in hosting an international student are invited to attend an information session on Wednesday, Dec. 14 from 2 to 3 p.m. on Microsoft Teams.

Registration is not required and attending the information session is not a prerequisite to participate in the program.

For more information or to register as a host, please visit the program’s website.

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