Families sought to bond with collegians

Organizers of a program that in recent years has built bonds between Charlotte-area families and hundreds of international students are looking for local residents to serve as hosts again.

The Charlotte Host Family Program is seeking area families to become friends with some of the students arriving in the area for the start of classes Monday at UNC Charlotte.

“The number of international students at UNCC is growing,” said Libby Phillips, a program leader. “We will be searching for new host families through September.”

Host families, Phillips said, make the international students a part of their lives – although the level of participation is up to the local families.

“In some cases, families get together once a week or so with the students for lunch or dinner,” she said. “Other families get more involved.”

This is not a residential program. The students live either on the UNCC campus or have housing of their own. “This is a friendship program,” Phillips said.

She said Charlotte Host Family linked 34 students with area families last year, and she expects at least that many this year.