Hello RSU 10!

Some of you know that we have a really wonderful group of exchange students at Mountain Valley High School this year. Currently there are eight (from Italy, France, South Korea, Spain, Japan, Brazil, the Netherlands and Poland), but on Monday we will have two more, bringing the total number to 10! It's very exciting!

These last two boys are still in need of a permanent home, however.  They have a Welcome Home until the 24th of September with Senator Lisa Keim, but after that, they need to be somewhere else for the school year. (Senator Keim would love to keep the boys for the year but logistically, they can't.) Several promising options for permanent homes have fallen through for a variety of reasons.

The boys, Hamidou from Mali and Daniyar from Kazakhstan, are amazing kids.  They have been awarded scholarships by the United States Department of State to study here.  68,000 kids a year apply for these scholarships and only 2,000 kids get scholarships. Hamidou and Daniyar are among the select few! The scholarships cover their flights to and from the US, health insurance, $125/month spending money for incidentals like soccer cleats or pizza and movies with friends, etc.  They also have $300 at the beginning of the school year to purchase warm clothing for the winter or anything else they may need in that regard.


If you or anyone you know would be able to provide a safe and nurturing home for one or both of them for the school year, please let me know ASAP.  They can be placed separately or together.

Information about the boys:

Hamidou is 15 years old and lives in Mali with his father, mother, two sisters, four brothers and grandmother. He loves to play basketball and spends a lot of time developing his basketball skills with his team. (He said he is not good at ‘football’ and therefore plays goal-keeper when they play pick-up games.) He also enjoys reading, hanging out with friends, and is very interested in agriculture and would like to be a specialist in the transformation of agricultural products in Africa. Others say of Hamidou that he is intelligent, curious, respectful and motivated. As the oldest son, Hamidou cares for his younger siblings and takes an active role in household duties. He makes new friends easily, values friendship and looks forward to experiencing a new culture in America.

Daniyar is 16 years old and lives in Kazakhstan, in a city of 1 million people, with his father, mother and 7 yr old sister who is a gymnast. He is highly interested in hanging out with American teenagers and playing basketball, his favorite sport. He also enjoys volleyball, water polo, ice skating, and skateboarding. Daniyar loves English, learning language and has a very close connection with his family with whom he enjoys spending time, including playing card games and board games. Others say of him that he has a good sense of humor, is active and easy-going, quick to join in, and is a peacemaker. He hopes to pursue a career that involves physics and math. Daniyar is very grateful for the opportunity to experience America and wants to become part of a family here.

If you have any questions at all, please contact me.

Thank you!

Abbey Rice