Rotary exchange student Sophie Faircloth heading off to Austria.
Rotary exchange student Sophie Faircloth heading off to Austria. Bruce Thomas

Local students head overseas

EXCITING adventures are in store for local students about to embark on Rotary exchange to destinations across the world.

Travel-minded students Sophie Faircloth, Wesley McFarlane and Mahli-Marie Lahene will today set off on their overseas quests in the hope of experiencing new languages, lifestyles and cultures.

The youth exchange program allows students aged between 15 and 18 to travel to countries of their choice to promote peace and friendship, gain a broader view of the world, and develop a deeper understanding of themselves.

Austria-bound Sophie is excited about her first solo overseas trip and is looking forward to developing her language skills.

“An exchange program is something I’ve always wanted to do and it’s going to be a great opportunity to learn a new language,” she said.

“I’m most looking forward to the skiing and the Euro-Trip that the Rotary Club has organised.”

Excited mum, Hazel, is thrilled about this fantastic opportunity and is already planning a family visit in July.

“We’re really impressed with the help Rotary has given us and they are organising some really great activities that are going to make her time there even more enjoyable,” Mrs Faircloth said.

The exchange program has also organised some great activities for Wesley’s stay in Sasebo, Japan, with a tour of the country’s major cities greatly anticipated.

“I’m also really looking forward to skiing and snowboarding on the ski fields over there,” he said.

Improving language and writing skills are also high on the list of things he wants to accomplish this year.

“I can already speak and write a little bit of Japanese, but I think this year will be a great opportunity for me to improve on this.”

Mum, Jennifer McFarlane, is very impressed with Rotary’s organisation of her son’s trip.

“Their volunteers do a fantastic job giving up their time and are incredibly organised,” Mrs McFarlane said.

The Rotary Club of Coffs Harbour will also bid farewell to Mahli-Marie Lahene as she begins her year-long stay in Finland.

While overseas, Miss Lahene will live with up to four host families, learning their culture, language and history of Finland.

An exploration of Scandinavian and European countries is what she is most looking forward to, along with meeting new people and encountering different cultures.

The Rotary program is recognised as the best exchange program by schools, parents and the students themselves and is a great way for local youth to explore different parts of the world.



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