The Dartmouth Friendship Family Program gives international students an opportunity to connect with the local community.
Local families have a chance to form cross-cultural friendships with students from around the world … and families can request a student from a particular country.
First - some basic facts about the program.
DFFP does NOT require overnight student hosting nor financial commitment. The international students live on campus.
Students and their friendship family matches engage socially at their convenience … sharing meals, sports, outings, celebrations, family traditions, visits to places of local interest
Each year two to three events are organized for students and host families…. pot-lucks, student performances, sledding party, or the like.
There is a DFFP listserv so families can get advice or make plans to join together for an occasional event.
DFFP Coordinator: Danielle Hussey, Assistant Dean of Pluralism and Leadership Danielle.M.Hussey@dartmouth.edu
DFFP Student intern for 2018-19 - Manny <Emmanuel.S.Akosah.email@example.com>
DFFP Advisory Committee member and host : Carolyn Frye <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Milt and I have been host family to students from Ecuador, Haiti, Swaziland, Korea, Tanzania and Kenya. It has been a great opportunity to have these students be part of our family.
We have been involved in the program for many of the same reasons as Janet and Doug. It is just a fabulous fun way to connect with these wonderful students.
These photos show some of the fun times we have had over the past 10 years with our FFP students.
The photos for this story were taken by Carolyn Frye and Janet Hardy
Kayaking on Lake Fairlee
Pot-Luck picnic on Post Pond in Lyme, NH
Introducing our student from Haiti to Cross Country Skiing at the Golf Course
Sledding just before the first Thanksgiving dinner in the United States
And now we are ready for all the desserts
Hiking near Burlington, Vt
Volunteering for the Prouty
Making a Pizza
Gleaning for Willing Hands when family visited for graduation
Enjoying a swim after a hot game of volleyball
The Dartmouth Friendship Family Intern for 2018-2019 is Emmanuel Sarpong Akosah and here is his short Bio.
I’m Emmanuel Sarpong Akosah, an international senior student in Dartmouth College. A technology enthusiast since high school, my studies in Ghana were focused on the natural sciences and mathematics. Upon admission to Dartmouth, I received a scholarship from the King Scholars Program which identifies talented students that have demonstrated leadership skills and commitment to alleviating global poverty.
In my first year, I signed up for the Friendship Family Program and was paired with the Healy’s, a family that resides in Norwich, Vermont. Over the next couple terms, this pairing would give me the opportunity to see the beautiful Vermont countryside scenes on numerous trips, be involved in local events such as the annual Scottish festival in Quechee and their son Dan’s soccer game at Hanover High School etc. Most importantly, the pairing offered me a feeling I could not have purchased or merited in any other way, a sense of home away from home.
Carolyn Frye, Milt Frye, Emmanuel Sarpong Akosah, and Janet Hardy getting charged up for the 2018-2019 program year
This program is not powered from the sun but from the heart instead
Doug and Janet Hardy have hosted families on three different occasions. Here is a short testimonial of their experiences.
As we discussed, my husband, Doug and I have 'hosted' international students through the Friendship Family Program three times, so far. We were interested in this program for several reasons:
- Janet grew up in a family that regularly hosted international students through various programs and some of whom became life long friends.
- We enjoy having a connection with the college and being able to help the student navigate the Upper Valley and their Dartmouth experience, especially during their first term.
- The program provides an opportunity to share our lives, cultures, traditions, and holidays with each other - enriching all of us.
Our first international student was from British Columbia and came to Dartmouth with her twin sister, so not only spoke English but had some family support too. We shared a few meals, but as an athlete she quickly became very busy and while we were in touch during her time at Dartmouth, we did not have a lot of opportunities to be together.
Our second student was an older student from Denmark, here only for one year. We saw him several times during his first term as he joined us for meals and our neighborhood cider press. Later in the year, he took advantage of opportunities to explore nearby cities during long weekends and holidays with his friends, so our visits became less frequent.
Our current international student is a senior from Tanzania and we have enjoyed spending time with him since his freshman year. Doug has work in Tanzania so its been a nice connection for us to have. Early on, we took him shopping for warm clothes to prepare for the New Hampshire winter. He taught us how to cook one of his (and now ours) favorite Tanzanian dishes, we pressed cider in our neighborhood, he and a friend helped us cut down and decorate our Christmas tree, and one year he and some friends cooked a fantastic meal at our house to celebrate Ramadan at sunset.
In all cases, its been a rewarding experience. I think the biggest help to the student is in the first term/year as they are getting their bearings and they appreciate knowing there is someone nearby to call on. We've loved keeping in touch with our Tanzanian student and sharing some of our family activities, learning about his family and following him through his college experience. We definitely plan to continue with the program.
Attached are some photos of our Tanzanian student and his friends.
Students helped cut and decorate the family Xmas tree
They showed us how to cook his favorite Tanzanian dish
It is all in how well you stir and mix ingredients
And dinner is about to be served
Doug Hardy, Ally Mahoud, and Janet Hardy
And now they are ready to taste
Take a moment and check out this worthwhile program and see if you can make a difference in an International students life while here at Dartmouth. You will be pleasantly surprised.