Episode 26: Top 5 Things To Not Do as a Homestay Parent

This episode about what not to do as a homestay parent has a lot of laughter. Not because the subject matter isn’t serious, but because humour boots creativity and problem-solving. Laughter encourages risk-taking and develops thinking skills that we use to analyze situations to create more positive outcomes for you as a host and your...

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Episode 25: Food Culture and Improving Your Food Relationship with Carla Beer-Carpenter

Food brings people together, but what if food becomes a barrier? Eating disorders are mental health issues and some students arrive with a negative dependency on food, without you even noticing. So what are the clues? Today, we chat with Carla Beer-Carpenter, a registered dietitian for almost 30 years with a passion for helping people...

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Episode 24: Financial Reality of Hosting Homestay Students

Okay let’s get real. One of the top or main reasons families participate in a homestay program is so that they can make some money or at least they think they can. Heck, it’s why we both started looking into the opportunity for our own families. However, over time it becomes more than that.

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Episode 23: Positivity, an Open Heart, and Hosting in Toronto with Rosalyn Benatar

How do your intentions bring out the best in your family to have a successful homestay experience? What differences do the big city of Toronto and the west coast of Canada provide to an international student? In this episode, we chat with Rosalyn Benatar, a recent transplant from Toronto to Victoria, BC. 

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Episode 22: Parenting and Being a Mom to International Students for Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day, in North America where we are and in a large portion of the world, is May 12th. To mark this occasion, we give examples of how we mother our international students… Or not. It really depends on the situation, the student’s needs, and your own parenting views. Whether you actually have your own...

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Episode 21: Awkwardness and Complexities of English Language and Communication

In this episode, we get into the difficulties of learning English and how you need to see the humour in embarrassing situations. When your student enunciates a word differently, this could result in miscommunication. We provide plenty of examples of how saying a word slightly different can lead to some very awkward situations. But we...

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Behind The Mic

Mary Chan

Show Host & Producer

Mary is the founder of Organized Sound Productions, a podcast editing company and voice-over artist based in Victoria, BC, Canada and has been hosting international homestay students since 2012. When she’s not busy running after her 3 year old daughter, she can be found knitting, sewing, baking, cooking, or canning… basically making everything from scratch; everything is handmade and homemade with love.

Erin Eastman Paulson

Show Host & Web Minion

Erin works in graphic and web design, is a student supervisor at an elementary school, and has a background in communications based in Victoria, BC, Canada. She has been hosting international homestay students since 2017. Growing up, Erin had an international homestay sister throughout her high school experience. She’s a Mom of three awesome kids aged 11, 7 and 5. Her favourite time of day is dinner time when the family sits down together to talk about their day AND learn how to raise an eyebrow.

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