2017 Ireland Homestay Stories

August 1, 2017

“This week continued to be more than amazing and such valuable life experiences. It was my first time living with a host family and I got the real experience of what it’s like living with an Irish family. I got to try the home cooked meals,learn more specific information on Ireland, play Irish sports with Irish kids, tour around town, and sea kayaking! My family was so interested in learning about me and my personal experiences living in America. Not every African American boy from Brooklyn gets the opportunity to travel abroad and stay with a host family but I was able to. I never knew such a bond could be built in 5 days. I know I will plan to take what I learned from them besides recipes and keep in contact with them forever!” –Dajourn

“This second week of Ireland has been eventful. For starters, I went kayaking for the first time. It was really nice scenery and the only problem I had is when I fell over- but it’s ok. Second, we had a music themed party at Mike and Kim’s house. I didn’t know half the songs but it was lots of fun. Last but not least is my homestay so far. It has been great! Every night we have had some great food like burgers and pizza and ice cream for desert. Also my host dad used to look like J.F.K. My host parents really care and I’m going to miss them when I leave.”- Mikyle

“We went seakayaking on 29 July 2017. For many of us, it was the first time kayaking. We were shown how to row with the oars on the beach first and taught how to get into the kayak. We then got into the water with wetsuits that were lent to us and they helped keep us warm in the frigid water. We kayaked around the coast and came back to the beach where we then explored Ardmore, Co. Waterford.” –Tereyna

“On the second day of our homestay session, we got the chance to experience a few traditional Irish sports including Gaelic Football and Hurling. These two sports both feature high scoring and comprehensive skills compared to their counterparts, soccer and field hockey. We were lucky to be coached by a local sports lover, and many of us had a great time sweating it up on the field.” –Leo

“It was a very memorable experience living in the home of an Irish family for five nights. Going in, I was nervous to meet my host parents and break apart from the EIL group. Being picked up by my host father changed my attitude about the homestay. He was so warm and welcoming and I settled in pretty quickly. His wife gave me the same courtesy. Throughout the stay, I learned so much and did many incredible activities. For instance, I learned about Irish culture including traditions and meals, I went sea kayaking, I had the most incredible milkshakes ever, and I got to play soccer which is one of my favorite sports. I met their grown-up children as well as seven grandchildren. Everyone was well-mannered and accepting of me. I spent a lot of time playing with the grandchildren and I became close with them. It was really great to meet more natives before the leadership conference where I have been exposed to hundreds more. The homestay experience was very valuable and enriching and was definitely a highlight of my youth.” –Hallie