Keeping it fresh!
Maria and Valentin Serban hosted students with the Rotary Club for several years before commencing hosting with CHN in 2019. Since the fall of 2019, they have hosted two CHN students each semester and have made every effort possible to make the students feel as though they were a part of the Serban family.
Some of the activities Maria and Val have done with their homestay students include reviewing homework assignments, attending concerts at the Jubilee Auditorium and Jack Singer Hall, taking trips to the Rockies, going to community events, playing laser tag, bowling at Chinook mall, attending family reunions, involving the students in their family’s secret Santa plans (which involved making gifts rather than buying), choosing the Christmas tree together and decorating it, helping the students to make their first snowman, and celebrating the students birthdays. Maria and Val have also supported the future education paths of their students by taking them to attend open house events at U of A in Edmonton and U of C in Calgary.
Maria and Val shared their personal thoughts on why they host: “There will always be room in our hearts for anyone else’s child, no matter where they come from; growing a true and loving family (beyond all borders, creeds or cultural background) is our life-long mission.”