CIVS Kenya
CIVS Kenya
CIVS Kenya

Benefits Of Homestay Programs While Volunteering In Africa

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Category: Blog
Written by Sophie Atieno

In our last post we talked about ways in which you can give back to your local community . Today, we will be discussing a bit about homestay programs for people volunteering in Africa.

Homestay programs have been around for years in developing countries. They are amazing as they usually give a travel experience like no other. It involves having visitors or in this case, volunteers staying in homes of the local people and through this, the volunteers can actually experience their hosts’ cultures and get to live like them on a daily basis.

It often feels like staying with family and is often a ticket to a new world. A new kind of life. Homestay programs may be great but they are not that easy. We will discuss the disadvantages in another post but today, let’s talk about the benefits of homestay programs while volunteering in Africa.

kaya kinondo ecotourism project

So they include:

Homestays allow you to gain a new family, a home away from home

Staying in a host family enables you to develop a new relationship with people who you could end up considering family. Through it you can get a home away from your actual home and it could help you as a volunteer in Africa get rid of feelings of homesickness. Through it you can gain new siblings and relatives that could help you grow as a person.

Homestay programs provide an opportunity to partake in family traditions

When you as a volunteer in Africa get to live with a host family in a homestay program, you will get the chance to experience different celebrations with them such as birthdays, holidays and their routines. You will also get to learn how they communicate with each other and the rest of the community. You learn what they like to do, to eat, how they prepare their meals, among others. All these activities vary from home to home, from culture to culture and you definitely would miss out on these in case you choose to stay alone.

A homestay program enables you to learn about the culture of a nation altogether

Aside from just learning about the traditions of a single family, you can get to learn about the different cultures in general. This is quite fun and will elevate your experience as a volunteer in Africa. While you are living in a homestay kind of arrangement, you will be free with local people. You will find it easier to interact with the locals because they most likely share the same cultural values you see in your host family members. The homestay program will make it easier for you to fit into a different country with more ease.

Homestay programs help you in the process of learning the local language

While learning a local language is of benefit to volunteers in Africa, it can be a bit difficult. However, homestay programs provide an opportunity for you to learn the local language in a safer environment. You can get assistance from the local host family in translating different phrases, in writing and even in speech. The best part is that your hosts will not have a problem correcting and supporting you. Such an environment encourages you to be better.

It helps you learn and enjoy local delicacies

Well, food is a big part of tourism whether volunteer tourism or any other kind. So imagine just how much you as a volunteer in Africa can learn. You get to taste a lot of dishes you had probably never even heard of. You will get a taste of the local cuisines made in traditional style. The best thing is that since they are made at home, they will be of great quality, nice and clean. That is more reason for you to fully indulge.

Well, at CIVS Kenya, we make arrangements for all our volunteers to stay with host families during their stay in the country while they volunteer for as long as is necessary. You can contact us in case you are interested in volunteering in Africa and want to be part of a homestay program.