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Washington State University Extension

Washington 4-H International Exchange

Host a Youth Delegate for an Up-Close and Personal Cultural Exchange Experience

Do you want to…

  • Give your family the experience of a lifetime?
  • Instill an appreciation for other cultures?
  • Learn new languages and communication skills?
  • Create new lifelong friendships?

Look no further than 4-H International Exchange! There are a variety of options both inbound and outbound. Learn more below!

2024-2025 Academic Year Exchange Program

 Apply now to ensure a place for your student in your local school district

AYP engages high school youth from many parts of the world. The student attends a local high school, but a high school host sibling in the host family is not required. Host families and individuals can be retired, empty-nesters, or families with young children. As a host family, you need only make room for an international high-school-age young person in your life, and in return, you will be touched with new insight, appreciation for the wider world, and a new friend for life.

For more information go to States 4-H Academic Year Program or send an email with any questions you may have about this program to Carolyn Russo.

Apply online to be an Academic Year host family at

Expand the sections below to meet the students who need families for the 2024-2025 school year.

Arisa: Female, 18, Japan

I like to play volleyball, cook, participate in drama/theater, listen to music, and play musical instruments. I am active in the LABO Organization and am a part of the volleyball team at my school. My friends and I often have parties like cooking parties and pajama parties. I would say that I am active, flexible, cheerful, sincere, friendly, and optimistic. I’d like to be a true family with my host family.  I want to be able to make natural smile when we are together and build a loving relationship with them. I want to do many things with them. For example, playing card games, picnics, camping, and outdoor activities. I want to cherish the time with my host family. In the future, I want a job where I get to interact with many people. I want to learn more about communication and education in university and want to increase the opportunities that children have to study. 

Flyer (PDF)

Vimeo Recording:

Yui: Female, 17, Japan

 Yui would describe herself as being curious, relaxed, bright, smiley, considerate, and optimistic. She is very interested in learning about foreign cultures and enjoys doing different activities outdoors. When she meets her new host family, Yui wants to cherish her time with them and hopes to be accepted as a true
member of their family. “I would like to build a relationship in which we honestly express our feelings and thoughts to each other. I would like to gain insights and discoveries through many exchanges.”

Flyer (PDF)

Vimeo Recording:

Academic Year-Long Program (AYP) Frequently Asked Questions

My family homeschools. Can we still host? 

Yes! Many of the host families in the program are homeschoolers. However, the student delegate must attend a public or tuition-waived private school. 

My kids are all in elementary school and younger. How old do the kids have to be in order to host?

There are no age requirements for academic year 4-H host families! Even families with young children/no children/children who have aged out can host an AYP student. 

Does it cost a lot of money to host a student?

Not really. Host families are responsible to provide three meals a day and pay for any family activities that you do together. However, the student delegates have their own medical insurance, spending money for clothing, toiletries, school activities, and personal shopping, and will pay for any activities that they do on their own or with school friends. 

What kind of support is offered to host families? 

As a J-1 visa program through the US State Department, no stipends or any kind of monetary compensation may be provided to host families. 4-H staff do provide on-program counseling throughout the duration of the program on the local, state, and national level. 

Do they have to have their own room?  

No, but they must have adequate personal space and privacy, including their own bed, room to store their belongings, and space to study. If a bedroom is shared, it must be with a child of the same gender and of a similar age. 

2024 Summer Program

More information coming soon! Please check back.

2024 4-H International Exchange Outbound Program

Are you interested in traveling outbound with 4-H International Exchange? Start an application at this link: and contact Carolyn Russo at ( to schedule an interview.

Washington State applications and interviews need to be completed and submitted by December 10, 2023

Dates, ages and countries being traveled to in the summer of 2024 are:

Costa Rica (age 15-18) June 20-July 19

Japan 4 week (age 12-18)  July 10-August 9

Japan 8 week (age 15-18)  June 12-August 9

South Korea  (age 12-17)   July 16-August 15

Taiwan (age 12-18) July 16-August 15

Norway (age 15-18) June 20-July 15

Argentina (age 15-18) June 20-July 15

For more information, contact