Greenheart Travel Language Exchange Homestay?
Replies: 4 - Last Post: Apr 6, 2013 7:22 AM Last Post By: confusionville
Apr 1, 2013 9:12 AM
Greenheart Travel Language Exchange Homestay?Has anyone participated in the Greenheart Travel Language Exchange Homestay program? If so, what/how was your experience? I'm considering this program for a homestay in Italy, so curious to hear about the company and the program from anyone who has been through it (in any location, but even better if you were in Italy!).
Apr 3, 2013 3:34 PM
I was directed to your post because I am in the middle of doing a Greenheart Home stay in Italy right now! I love it. It has been such a good experience for me. The application process was exactly what they described. I sent all of my information in and a few weeks (maybe a month?) later I was given my placement and able to contact my family.
Being in the country itself has been great too. I have the days to myself, so I can explore all around the region or just take a day to relax and recuperate. I try to make sure that I am home in the evening to talk to the family. Most of my teaching English arises just from our every day conversation, though I do arrange more formal lessons to do with some members of the family.
I do live in a small town. Not a lot happens here, but there is very good public transportation. There is a bigger town close, so I can find all the products (shampoo, soap, toothpaste, etc...) I need easily. To explore the region, I bring my kindle, ipod and hop on a train to cities that are anywhere from 30 minutes to a few hours away. I have been able to take a few weekend trips to places like Venice and my family encourages me to go see different cities. It is nice to be able to travel and explore independently, but then return home to a family who cares about you and asks you how your day was.
I know they have a blog about people doing their programs that you can read for more information If you have any specific questions, I'd be happy to answer them.
Apr 3, 2013 3:36 PM
2Hi! I work at Greenheart Travel and wanted to send you the link to recent blogs posted about Language Exchange Homestays in Italy. You might be able to reach out to them as well to get their feedback, and we always welcome your calls to send you a reference as well.
Have a wonderful day!
Apr 4, 2013 3:30 AM
I am currently participating in the Language Exchange Homestay in Sicily, and I have nothing but good things to say about the program. Applying was very easy and they respond pretty quickly with your placement and family information. What was a huge comfort was how incredibly helpful the program coordinators are. They are just as excited as you are about the experience and they really go out of their way to help make it as simple as possible. My contact at Greenheart was always available and eager to answer any questions or concerns I may have had.
The most rewarding thing for me during my time here has actually been developing a relationship with the family. I have been completely welcomed in as a daughter, not just an English tutor they are hosting. I am mainly tutoring the daughter of my family in English as she wants to take an English Language Certification Exam this summer, but I spend a lot of time simply talking in English with other members of the family as well. In return, they are eager to help me improve my Italian language.
The traveling has been wonderful as well. There is something about independent travel that is very rewarding. That being said however, I will say to be mindful of where in Italy you are and what their culture is like in that area. Since arriving here I have learned that it is not very common for girls to go off by themselves here in Catania, as it is a bigger city. While I feel completely safe being on my own, I can see how it is easy for a lone foreigner to get taken advantage of. Also, as I have gotten to know my host mother and her concerns for the area (and for me as part of her family for a brief time), I try not to go off too much by myself out of respect for her. However, I am lucky to have a family so eager to help me make the most out of my time here. We usually travel to other cities on the island on the weekends, and they always make time for me to wander around these cities on my own.
Overall, I have loved my experience here. I am able to feel independent while still having the comforts of a family close by.
Apr 6, 2013 7:22 AM
4Thank you all for the information you provided! I actually did read the blogs prior to posting, and then thought I'd check out this forum for even more stories/information. I appreciate you telling me your experiences in Italy!
It sounds like a great experience - and I am very excited to continue my planning.
This is my first posting on here, so I'm not sure if there is a way to private message any of you? If you are open to questions as I come up with them (b/c I'm sure I will have some!) - please let me know how I could contact you.
Thank you again! I hope you continue to enjoy your travels and Italian families!!!
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