Oz Homestay Newsletter - March 2013
Welcome to our first newsletter for 2013. We hope it has been a great year for you and everyone has settled into a routine after Christmas holidays.
OUR MARKETING TRIP TO VIETNAM
May and Elizabeth had a wonderful opportunity visiting Vietnam at the end of 2012. Whilst they visited a few educational agents in both Ho Chi Minh City (formerly Saigon) and again in Hanoi, they also took the opportunity to experience the wonders of Vietnam, the people and their culture.
“The trip showed us that Vietnam, whilst gradually changing, is still a two stage economy, vast majority are in the low income bracket and those that are in the high income bracket, are in the minority but are very wealthy. From our observations, students would have an extremely difficult time adjusting to life in Australia.” Elizabeth says.
The cost of living in Australia is enormous compared to where Vietnamese students come from, where meals are very cheap, as are transportation costs.
The internet is freely available in the major cities in Vietnam – everywhere so students are not used to paying for their access – and these connections included downloads etc – so having to pay here, or understanding no downloads, is new to them.
From these short notes, you can appreciate how the students feel – when they first arrive here.
We are hoping these insights will help understand a little more from how the student’s may react when they arrive in Australia. Now we can see it would be a real shock to them on a number of points.
The new system, that we have mentioned in previous newsletters, will be delayed for several months as there are a few teething problems. In the meantime, if your clearances do need to be renewed we will do it through the current system. At least you will be covered for the following 12 months and hopefully then we will know what the requirements are.
We will keep you posted when we have further updates on the developments.
HOMESTAY, A POSITIVE EXPERIENCE
A big "thank you" to all our hosts who hosted our 2012 HSC students. There were many proud de facto parents at the end of last year when the HSC results came out before Christmas. While we celebrate the students’ achievements, we would also like to acknowledge all the homestay mums and dads for your great effort and support for making it all possible for our international students.
This year, we would particularly like to encourage you to share your stories with other hosts at Oz Homestay. It has been rather unfortunate with some terrible news published by the media about how overseas students are treated in Australia. We believe this is only a small percentage of the whole picture and we would like to encourage more positive affirmations.
Our office will be closed for the Easter long weekend from Friday 29th March to Monday 1st April, all inclusive. Emails and faxes will not be checked during this time. For genuine emergencies, please contact 0421 556 374. It would be greatly appreciated if this number is only to be used in the case of an emergency.From all of us here at Oz Homestay, we wish you a safe and happy Easter.