Jeddah Blog

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Bates Students Come to Saudi Arabia: Host Families Needed

For those living in Jeddah, would you like to host a college student from the USA? Do you want to show foreign students what living in a Saudi home really feels like and what makes it so special? Then here’s your chance.

Leena Nasser and Nora Al Dhuwaihi are arranging for 16 students studying Anthropology in the US to visit Saudi Arabia during May as part of a Study Abroad Programme called Bates Students Come to Saudi Arabia. The students will be visiting Riyadh, Khobar and Jeddah to observe and learn about a variety of topics, such as Saudi culture, modern history, economic change and development, education, health care, women’s issues, expatriates, social services, the environment and much more.

For their duration of their stay in Jeddah the organizers are looking for Host Families to generously open their homes to one or two students (according to their preferred gender) to allow them to experience the simplicity and hospitality of Saudi families. This is a great opportunity for the youth to take part in really helping to construct a positive image of Saudi Arabia.

The Study Abroad Programme

16 Bates College students are going to be flying into Jeddah for a week in May 2012 on an academic trip to learn about Saudi Arabia under the lens of anthropology. They are looking forward to experiencing living in a Saudi home and learning first-hand about the Saudi culture and more importantly people! These students are a group of intellectuals who are art, history, politics, anthropology and environment majors.

The students will be in Jeddah for one week from Saturday May 12, 2012 to Saturday May 19, 2012. In wanting outsiders to engage in an unforgettable, meaningful and deep experience in Jeddah, the organizers thought that there is really no better way, than for them to actually experience living with a hospitable family that understands and lives the culture inside out. If YOU would like to host one of these wonderful students and take part in fostering this academic venture of building respect and understanding between two very different cultures, than please email Leena or Nora at or with the following information:

  • Your name.
  • Why you are interested in hosting a student.
  • The number of members in your family.
  • Occupation.
  • Address in Jeddah.
  • Student preference, ie whether you would like to host a male or female student, and how many students you would like to host.

Their only requirement, is that you provide transportation for the student to be dropped off early in the morning at the meeting destination, and picked up at night at that same destination.

You can follow the programme on Twitter @Bates2Saudi

– Sabaa Ali

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