Are you ready for the adventure of living in another culture?  

Would you like to host a student from another country?

When you step off the airplane as a Rotary  Exchange Student in another country, you have the opportunity to…

*  Become part of another culture                   

*  Learn another language

*  Gain confidence and maturity                      

*  Broaden your view of the world

*  Learn a lot about yourself                            

*  Forge lifelong friendships

We invite you to explore our site, learn more about Rotary Youth Exchange, and if it's right for you, take those first steps toward one of the most amazing, memorable, adventurous years of your life.  Rotary District 5170 Youth Exchange will prepare you for your adventure while at the same time introducing you to other exchange students, both presently in the USA from other countries and students who have returned after completing their exchange.  It's an adventure which can teach foreign language skills, cultural sensitivity, service to humanity and an understanding of the wider world. 

Long-Term and Short-Term Exchanges

Rotary has both long-term and short-term exchange programs. The former is for the full academic year while the latter is usually during summer vacation. Students for either exchange are selected by a sponsoring Rotary Club on the basis of a written application and personal interview.


• Must be between 15 and 18 1/2 years old at the time of departure
• Average or above academic achievement
• Outgoing and adventuresome
• Flexible and open to living in a different culture

Youth Exchange is open to the children of Rotarians as well as those of non-Rotarians.

When students return, they will be asked to share their experiences with family, friends, Rotary Clubs, their school and community so that other young people can learn about Youth Exchange and our global neighbors.

Long-Term Exchange

Students spend a full academic year with two or more host families beginning in late summer. Host parents provide room and meals as well as support and guidance. The host Rotary Club provides a limited monthly spending allowance, a counselor, and supervision.

Although parents should be prepared to cover travel, health insurance and a few other costs for the outbound student, Rotary arranges travel and assists with visa arrangements. In some cases scholarships may be available to help defray exchange costs. Talk to your local Rotary Club or Rotary District Chairperson about your individual situation.

Short-Term Exchange

In a Summer Cultural Exchange, students spend three to six weeks in their host country visiting with another family and seeing another part of the world. The ESSEX Short-term Exchange Program arranges for the student's family to host a matching student from another country in return.  This program provides an excellent opportunity to experience a new culture in a brief period of time. Like the long-term exchange, the short-term exchange requires a sponsoring Rotary Club in each country, and students are selected on the basis of a written application and interview process.

The Interview Process

You should contact your local Rotary Club for details on how to apply. If the club decides that your application matches their opportunities, you will be interviewed by the local club in the fall and your application sent on to the Rotary District Youth Exchange Committee for a second round of interviews. Final selection is made by the Rotary District and usually occurs in the late Fall. Orientation sessions during the months prior to departure help prepare students and parents for both outbound and inbound experiences. Students participating in the academic year exchange usually leave for their overseas adventure in mid- to late August (summer) and return at the end of the academic year (generally mid- to late June).

Our next District Interview is November 5, 2017, Sunday

Short-term exchange students may undergo a somewhat less stringent interview process during the winter or spring prior to departure.

We need to protect all youth involved in Rotary Youth Programs, for example Interact, RYLA, Youth Exchange, Children at Risk, Mentoring Programs, ELC, and local club projects.

Announcing an Exciting Innovation!!

We have developed a new streamlined (and simple) process which allows you to complete your Volunteer Affidavit and Interview in a secured online environment (rather than filling out forms and meeting with your club YPO).

You just select 'Online Youth Services Volunteer Affidavit' from the Links section on the left, select your Club, select your name from the list, then click on 'Send YSVA link'.  (If your name doesn't appear just email 
Mike Cloutier with your Name and Club and he'll add you to the database and send you the link

When you have completed the online Volunteer affidavit, you will also have provided email addresses for your 3 personal references.  Please alert these individuals to be looking for their personal email link from the system as they will be able to simply answer the questions in a secure online environment (about 8 questions - so not a lengthy ordeal for references).

That's it!  All three required forms (YSVA, Interview and Reference Checks) are completed online.  Streamlined, quick and easy.


 For more information about the Youth Exchange Program please contact the

Kevin Greenlee - Outbound Coordinator
Mark Junod - Inbound Coordinator
Our next District Interview is November 5, 2017, Sunday

Rotary clubs place great emphasis on their work with people in the community, including young people, through its many Youth Service programs including Rotary Youth Exchange, RYLA, Rotaract, Interact, Speech Contest, and mentoring. These volunteer efforts are vital to the quality of life in our communities and to the good reputation of Rotary and Rotarians. For these good works to continue it is extremely important that our Rotary clubs protect the interests of everyone involved, and create and maintain a safe and respectful environment for all participants in Rotary activities. Fulfilling this duty safeguards the interests of Rotary Clubs and Rotarians by minimizing their risk of liability, including legal liability, should any participant in a Rotary activity become a victim of abuse.  Click here to be taken to the Youth Protection page where you can download a copy of these guidelines and the reporting policy.

There is a Youth Protection Certification process for individual volunteers. 
Click here to get a checklist and information on this process.

Clubs with involvement in any youth program must complete these minimum requirements for Club Certification:

  1. At least three club members must be completely screened and trained to respond to problems or concerns that might arise, including responding to and reporting allegations of abuse or harassment (this requirement is met by completion of the four steps in the Youth Protection Certification process).
  2. The club's fully certified volunteers must include at least one member of each gender.
  3. The Club Youth Service Certification Application must be viewed online and acknowledged by the Club President, Youth Service Chair and Youth Protection chair. The Club President is sent a link to the Youth Service Certification page and they select the Rotarians who are the Youth Service and Youth Protection chairs.  All three individuals receive an email link to the document and agree to comply with it.

Click here for the current Club Certification status.

If a club receives an allegation of abuse or complaint involving a youth in any Rotary sponsored program, the club should immediately contact the District 5170 Youth Protection Officer, Scot Smithee, for assistance with resolving the situation.

We want each club to have a Youth Protection Officer (YPO). 
Click here for the YPO Job Description.

Links on the left side of this page provide online training links, forms and instructions for Youth Service volunteers.