Host family finding is a year-round effort that takes a mixture of many different approaches to be successful! While the most effective means has always been a person-to-person conversation and word-of-mouth marketing, building awareness of AFS in the community is also important. Newspaper articles, web postings, emails, flyers, and advertising in local media help raise the profile of AFS. Share student profiles and host student letters with families you know. The Placements widget of MyAFS is designed to help you showcase our awesome students.
If you have ideas you'd like to share, or you're looking to hear about what others across the U.S. are doing, check out this collaborative hosting best practices document!
See below for the following:
- Host Family Recruitment Promotions Form (SP Funds)
- Host Family Recruitment Guidelines
- Email Templates
- Hosting Strategies and Talking Points
- Hosting Promotional Videos
- Sample Web Ads
- Printable Hosting Resources
- Host Country Profiles
Use this Form to Report Your Team’s Sponsored Programs Hosting Promotions
If you are using Sponsored Programs funds to promote hosting in your community, please use the form below to report your promotions and request additional marketing support if needed:
Host Family Recruitment Standards and Guidelines:
To ensure the privacy and safety or our participants, host families and host schools, all AFS staff, and volunteers must follow CSIET and Department of State host family recruitment standards at all times.
AFS shall NOT publicize the need for host families via any public media with announcements, notices, advertisements, etc, that:
- Are not sufficiently in advance of the student’s arrival.
- Appeal to public pity or guilt.
- Imply in any way that a student will be denied participation if a host family is not found immediately.
- Identify photos of individual students and include an appeal for an immediate family.
- Compromise the privacy, safety, or security of participants, families, or schools. Specifically, using personal student data or contact information (including addresses, phone numbers, or email addresses) or photographs of the student. Exchange student photographs and personally-identifying information, either online or in print form, can only be made available to potential host families who have been fully vetted and selected for program participation. Such information, if available online, must be password protected.
In public media advertisements
- UNACCEPTABLE words or phrases include: Urgently Needed, Don’t let me be homeless, This is an emergency.
- ACCEPTABLE words or phrases include: Open your hearts and homes, Host an International Student.
If you have any questions or want advice, do not hesitate to contact your Hosting Specialist or email email@example.com.
Choose the audience you are sending the email to for a sample of what to say.
*For additional, country-specific email templates, refer to the Champions Article in the Marketing Initiatives section.
Hosting Strategies and Talking Points:
Every AFS Volunteer is a Hosting Hero!
The Hosting Advisory Group has put together a resource full of ideas that every AFS Volunteer can do in your local communities.
Read more about how you can put some Sprinkles on the AFS Sundae.
Refer to the below resources for ideas on recruiting host families and sample "blurbs" or short paragraphs you can use in emails, announcements, and even texts!
Storytelling in Southern New England with Jamie Cohen: See how one area team is using storytelling as a marketing strategy to promote hosting.
*Also refer to the customizable Email and Press Release Article
*Additional videos can be found on the AFS-USA YouTube Channel
General Promotional Videos:
Web and Social Media Ads:
To view customizable/fillable hosting ads, visit our Canva Templates article.
Printable Hosting Resources:
*Note: You will need to download the fillable resources prior to editing.
Customizable Flyer English and Spanish - Version 2 (great for Peachjar promotions!)
Social Media & Bio Cards:
*Use Avery label 8371 for best results
Yard Signs & More:
Host Country Profiles (these can be used as Intercultural Learning Resources or promotional flyers):
Argentina, Austria, Bangladesh, Belgium-Flanders, Belgium-French, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Chile, China, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Ecuador, Egypt, Finland, France, Germany, Ghana, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Kosovo, Kuwait, Latvia, Malaysia, Mali, Mexico, Morocco, Mozambique, Netherlands, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Slovakia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, United Kingdom
You've promoted hosting an AFS student, now what? Once you have identified some families interested in learning more, please be sure to enter them into Global Link. Visit the Place Hosted Students section to learn more about reaching out to your new Hosting Leads.