We are happy to announce, that this years Host Family of the Year Award 2023 goes to Dana’s Family.
Dana’s Family is a family of 5 located in Massachusetts and was nominated for the award by their Care Professional Marvin with loving words:
I am working with Dana’s family since August 2021 and couldn’t be happier with my match. I first talked to them during my interview process, which was in February 2021 and a couple of weeks after that we matched and they decided to wait six months till I arrive instead of looking for someone that would’ve been available earlier. Since then, we talked every other week and I was able to really get to know the family before I started working for them.
My Host Family is a family of five people and each one of them is a special person. I like to introduce you to them and tell you a little more about them, so you can understand what makes them so unique and special to me.
Starting with Dana, who is the mother and one of the kindest and most organized person I’ve ever met. Dana tries everything in her power to make sure, that people around her are happy and she always tries to solve problems. She also likes to communicate and talk about everything. Dana helped me to get through harder times and is always there if I need anyone to just listen. I never felt like there is something I can’t talk about it with her. She always has good advice for me and makes me feel like I’m a part of the family and not just someone that works for them. She also tries to help my friends here when they have problems with their host families.
Jeff is the Father and a very smart man. I really like to listen to and learn from him. He is not home during the week but on the weekends he always tries to spend time with his family. He has great humor and likes to talk about cars. Jeff helped me a lot when it comes to travel, because of him I’m able to save more money on hotels and he always has some recommendations about fun activities in different cities.
Delaney and Genevra are the daughters of Dana and Jeff. Both of them are very funny and also very smart women that have a lot of love for their younger brother. When they are home they try to be around Carter as much as possible and he is always laughing around them.
When I was in San Diego to do a weekend class and to visit the city, Delaney offered me to stay with her in her apartment so I didn’t have any extra cost for a hotel or housing.
Carter is the youngest of the family and the one that I’m taking care of. He loves to have a 1 on1 and always tries to make someone laugh. He also likes to read books, play with his toys or spend some time on his iPad. Carter has a lot of love for the people around him and shows that always by hugging them. One thing that I love is that every night, when I put him to bed, he gives me a big hug, no matter how his day was.
I also like to introduce you to Nana, who is Jeff’s mother. She tries to see Carter as much as possible and spends a lot of time with him. She is always interested in his therapy progress and looks up new things that we could try with him. She also makes the best food and even made me traditional German food to give me some feeling of home here in the US.
In the Summer of 2022 my Host Family opened there house and hosted my parents and my younger brother for a couple weeks and made their stay here a very special one and then in October they did the same thing when my older brother visited me here and even gifted us tickets to see a Patriots game. They also never have a problem with me having friends over. They even hosted a Care Professional, that had some problems in her family, until she found a new match.
But also in my professional development the family supports me and gave me opportunities to grow and learn new things. Another big thing that I’ve learned here is to change a G-Tube. The family trusted me enough to do this after I saw it a couple times being done in a hospital and after I once did it together with a nurse watching over.
They also ask for my opinion about treatments for Carter and had me be part of his IEP meeting. They include me in conversations with doctors, therapists and teachers.
I hope that this could give you a better understanding on why I think they deserve this award.
I am very happy to have this family as my Host Family and I’m also very grateful for all the things that they did for me.