Homestay Program

As part of our international program, we offer students a chance to live with an English-speaking family in order to gain a better understanding of Canadian lifestyles and values. Our homestay families provide a loving family environment in which our international students can achieve positive personal growth and academic excellence.

Homestay families, in turn, get to experience the culture and background of students from a variety of countries. Host families are encouraged to participate in organized events and activities that our international students would likely be unable to experience in their own countries.

Homestay Application

If you are interested in our Homestay Program, please fill out the Homestay Application Form.

With the Homestay Application, you must include:

  • A photocopy of the student Passport with student picture
  • A letter of introduction written by the student
  • A letter of introduction written by the student's natural parent
  • Pictures of the student and his/her family engaged in activities at home 

When you apply there will be a $500.00 non-refundable Homestay Application fee.

Student Placement with a Host Family

Once a student has been accepted into the International Program and submitted a complete Homestay Application, placement with a host family can begin.

  • The complete Homestay Application is forwarded to the RDCRS Homestay Coordinator
  • Based on the information provided on the application, the Homestay Coordinator will begin a search for a suitable family
  • Once a suitable match has been found, a profile of the family will be emailed to the natural parents or the student's Authorized Representative
  • For September registrations, Host Family profiles will be emailed in June
  • For February registrations, Host Family profiles will be emailed in January 
  • Natural parents or Authorized Representatives are asked to respond to the profile within one week
  • Once the Natural Parent or Authorized representative have agreed with the placement, contact information will be exchanged between the families.

NOTE: Our Homestay Coordinator will try meet the request listed on the Homestay Application. However, natural parents must understand that not all of the requests can always be met and they must be flexible with their choice of host families.

Student Placement Guidelines

The RDCRS Homestay Program operates from September 1 to June 30 of each year.

Students accessing the program before September 1 and after June 30 must have permission from the International Program and must pay an additional $30 for each day.

Changing Host Families

At times, difficulties may arise that will require mediation between the student and the Host Family. Our Homestay Coordinator will meet with both the student and host family and try to resolve any conflict that may arise. The decision to change a student to a different Host Family will be made by the Homestay Coordinator in consultation with the Host Family, Student, Natural Parent or Authorized Representative and the Manager of the RDCRS International Program.

Hosting an International Student

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to host an international student in your home? 

For information, please visit the The Canada Homestay Network website.

Homestay Guidelines and Expectations

The goal of the Red Deer Catholic Homestay program is to make your experience as a host family a rewarding one. In turn, we ask that Homestay Families strive, to the best of their abilities, to treat their student as they would one of their own children – with love, positive reinforcement, and respect.

Homestay Families will receive PAYMENT per month, at the END of each month. This payment covers room and board and helps to offset the costs of family activities, such as swimming, bowling, going out for pizza or ice cream, and similar expenses. Clothing, extra school fees, personal hygiene items, spending money and costly family outings, (such as a trip to West Edmonton Mall, Banff, Water Park or skiing) are the responsibility of the student.

It is the responsibility of the Homestay Family to:

  • Utilize their caring and nurturing talents to make their new family member feel accepted as part of their family unit
  • Provide healthy, nutritious meals and snacks (while adhering to necessary diet restrictions) to ensure physical wellness.
  • Provide opportunities to mix, mingle and promote social development
  • Provide time for spiritual reflection.
  • Provide a private bedroom for their student containing a bed, closet, dresser and desk with a lamp and chair. 
  • To help students to better understand Canadian culture.

To be a Host Parent Application Procedure

Please complete the Host Family Application online:

Each Homestay Family applicant must agree to a personal interview and residence check by the Homestay Coordinator. This will provide an opportunity to discuss compatibility issues and to facilitate a positive and mutually rewarding arrangement for the student and the Homestay Family. Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools considers child safety and security of utmost importance. Therefore, the following measures must be taken:

Policy records check. This check is done locally and contains information on criminal activities throughout Canada. It can be obtained from your local Police or RCMP detachment of approximately $25.00 and must be provided for each person over the age of 18 living in your home. Records checks are often free for additional adults over and above the first two people. Two pieces of identification must be provided for this search, one with photo identification (driver’s license, passport, health care card, birth certificate). Please list Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools as the organization requesting this information, with our Homestay Coordinator as the contact person.

Intervention Record Check – Children’s Services. This service is free of charge and is provided by Diamond Willow Child & Family Services Authority (3rd floor, 4826 Ross Street, Red Deer, AB, 403-341-8642). Two photocopies pieces of identification must be provided, one with photo identification and one of the following: driver’s license, passport, health care card, birth certificate or proof of citizenship card. This check takes approximately 25 days to process, so please submit this form to Social Services as soon as possible.

In order to expedite your Homestay Family application, you may submit your application and Police records check to Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools first, with the Child Welfare record check submitted separately once completed.

The personal information requested in the following application is being collected to coordinate the needs of both the international student and the Homestay family in order to determine the best possible placement. It is collected and protected in accordance with the School Act, the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FOIP) and Regulations thereto. If you have any questions about the collection of this information, please contact our Program Manager.

Your required record checks can be sent to:

Homestay Coordinator
Red Deer Catholic Regional Schools Homestay Program
5210 - 61 Street, Red Deer, AB T4N 6N8
Phone: 403-754-5562 Ext. 2038