When UK Schools closed in March amid the Coronavirus outbreak, some international students were unable to make it back to their home countries. Stranded and in the absence of family members in the UK, our hosts have gone above and beyond to keep our students safe and well taken care of during the UK lockdown. Read on and tune in to Bright World's Podcast Channel as we speak with one such host family and their student Ian.
Bright World Guardianship Accommodation Manager, Fiona Williamson was joined by one of our UK Host Families on Bright Sounds this week, to talk about their recent efforts in hosting one of our students during lockdown. Belinda and Ben Bourne have been taking care of Ian since his school closed in March when we learned that he was unable to make it back home due to travel restrictions. Ian also joined us on our Podcast channel to talk about how he has been keeping up his spirits during the UK lockdown.
As a UK based Guardianship Organisation ,we rely heavily on the good-nature of our host families to help us provide an excellent service to our students but their hospitality and flexibility during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic has exceeded all expectations.
Our hosts are used to welcoming students during the half term breaks and short exeat weekends, when UK Boarding Schools close. Additionally, we call upon our Host Families at short notice and in an emergency but these occasions are short lived with the child's return to school imminent and the timeline of their stay known to the hosts. The cancellation of flights and shutting of some borders has left our students more reliant than ever before on their host family.
Ian Lauritzen has been keeping his productivity levels high during lockdown, using his time to work on a series of house projects for himself and the Bourne family to enjoy. Ian's work in building a brand new garden pond has provided a welcome distraction from lockdown boredom and have kept him busy during breaks from his online learning. Ian has also been working on a Potato patch for the family, so they can grow their own for many seasons to come. A reminder perhaps of these strange and usual times that we all find ourselves in.
All Bright World Host Families are following our Host Family Covid-19 Policy. We are also making contingency plans to help ensure ALL students can remain in the UK for half term and Christmas if this is required. We have been liaising with schools will be ready to help where needed. Our host family network is also ready to help in the case of further school closures.
Our focus now as guardians has to be helping schools to facilitate a safe return for students this Autumn. In cooperation with our partner schools, agents and parents we have formulated our 6 point enhanced service plan for a safe return of students in September.
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We are delighted to be part of a forward-thinking cooperation of schools and guardians called Safe Schools UK.