STATES’ 4-H INTERNATIONAL EXCHANGE PROGRAMS: 
2020 Outbound Chaperone Position Description

PURPOSE & EXPECTATIONS

The primary purpose of the States’ 4-H International Exchange Programs’ (States’ 4-H) chaperone is to support the exchange delegates while traveling abroad. Delegates’ needs range from questions on travel preparation, to host family issues, to medical emergencies while abroad. Although the chaperone should build rapport with the delegates, his/her/their main responsibility is to be the group leader. The chaperone should take charge when problems arise, take disciplinary action with delegates if needed, and serve as a role model while traveling abroad and interacting with people of different cultures. Additional responsibilities include, but are not limited to, providing meet-and-greet services at the airport, helping delegates with international travel procedures, monitoring delegates during the program, and providing guidance for delegates’ concerns, issues, and cross-cultural adjustment.

CHAPERONE CRITERIA/REQUIREMENTS

  • Must be at least 25 years of age at the start of the exchange
  • Must be involved with 4-H either currently or previously
  • Must have experience escorting/chaperoning and working with youth
  • Should have international travel experience and/or living abroad
  • Should exhibit involvement and interest in the country for which they are applying
  • Must be available for the full exchange period, including any pre-departure orientation activities (e.g. conference calls, email correspondence, state/national orientations, etc.), and the day after the exchange period in case of any travel deviations or flight cancellations
  • Must be available by phone and email to the States’ 4-H office and delegates starting at least 2 months prior to departure
  • Must have good communication skills, especially with teenagers and international partners, demonstrating exceptional tact and sensitivity to others
  • Must be flexible, able to adapt to pressure, uncertain or changing schedules, and show sound judgement in challenging situations
  • Some knowledge of local language is helpful, but not required (for Costa Rica, Spanish is preferred)
  • Cannot have a child participating in the same exchange program to which the chaperone is applying

CHAPERONE ROLE & RESPONSIBILITIES

  • Demonstrate responsible behavior, a culturally sensitive attitude, and serve as a role model for delegates.
  • Fulfill all requirements set forth in the chaperone agreement and chaperone handbook (will be provided by States’ 4-H once selected).
  • Comply with all 4-H procedures and policies as well as procedures and policies specific to States’ 4-H.
  • Participate in program preparations as requested by your state coordinator and States’ 4-H Headquarters.
  • Become acquainted with each delegate before the exchange (by phone, email, etc.). Chaperones are responsible for delegates from several different states.
  • Contact the delegates every other week in the host country and submit call reports to States’ 4-H.
  • Be available to resolve problems relating to any delegate while in the host country or in transit (including flexibility to accept a change in your flight schedule to stay with a delegate if their flight is delayed/cancelled).
  • Participate in all exchange activities as required (e.g. pre-departure orientations, group camp, in-country field trips, ).
  • Chaperones will be available 24/7 during the exchange period. This is not a vacation for the chaperone—it is a working trip where he/she/they will always be “on-call” for the delegates, but he/she/they will still get to enjoy the culture of another country and experience life with a local family.
  • Chaperones are allowed one personal trip (maximum 2 nights, 3 days), which must be approved by States’ 4- H Headquarters and international partner prior to departure, at the chaperone’s expense. If an issue with a delegate arises, chaperones may be asked to return early or cancel/reschedule their personal trip.
  • Conduct States’ 4-H Evaluations at departure debreifing.
  • Submit a final program report to States’ 4-H upon returning home.

 

Please complete the following form. Following the submittion of this form an email [From MSU SURVEYS] will be sent to the address you submitted with application documents. Please complete the application documents and by email to sdavison@montana.edu or mail to: 211 Taylor Hall Bozeman MT 59717 by November 15 deadline. 

If you have any questions or need assitance completing the application please contact Stephanie Davison at the 4-H Center for Youth Development at 406-994-3502.