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Chile

Parque Nacional Torres del Paine, Patagonia, Chile Chile

Country Information


Chile, the southernmost country of the world, was once described by Chilean Nobel Prize Winner Pablo Neruda as the "country made for poets." From flamingos in the world’s driest desert, to penguin colonies in the southern Patagonia region and the towering presence of the Andes, Chile's variety of natural wonders is enchanting. You will learn about Chilean culture by sharing your host student’s special traditions as they practice and teach the customs of their various ethnic groups.

Stories


She fit right in from day one... Read more

"[She] fit right in from the start. We picked her up from Loysburg, Pa., on Saturday. By noon on Sunday it was like she had always been here… I would recommend this program to any family.” –Stacey Boggs, host mother to 3 students from Chile


Lifestyle and Family


Like Latin Americans in general, Chileans are friendly. Chile is a vast mixture of races and nationalities such as Mapuches (the native Chileans), Aymara, Palestinians, Jews, Italians, Asians, Yugoslavians, Greeks and Germans. Because of this great ethnic diversity, Chileans are open to many different types of people. Life in Chile is very family oriented and children are taught to have a strong respect for their parents. Most families are patriarchal but mothers do have an equal hand in decision making. Sons and daughters are treated differently with the rules for girls being more stringent.

Teen Life and Sports


In their spare time, young Chileans like to get together at friends’ houses or go to movies. They also like to gather in the town square, go to parties, or just hang out in the local café. Most schools have the option for after school sports and activities.

Dress


Chilean dress is very similar to Western style of dress. Students are required to wear uniforms to school. Chile goes through most of the same weather conditions as we do in the U.S.

Diet


Lunch is the main meal of the day. A typical dish includes meat (beef, lamb, pork or chicken) or fish with rice or pasta and vegetables. Dinner is served after 8 and is normally smaller portions of lunch. Food is often steamed, fried in vegetable oil, or barbecued. Fruits are varied and abundant in Chile throughout the year.

Language and Religion


Spanish is the primary language in Chile, but English, German and Mapudungun are also commonly spoken. About 70% of the population is Roman Catholic.



Alejandra's Mother's Day Message to her Host Mother, Jan


I want to thank my host mom, Jan Thoen, for everything she has done for me. We have been together for almost 4 months, and I have to tell you that this time together has been the best time ever. I really love you like my mom, because you are my mom, and even though I'm going back to my country in a few months, i want you to know that you'll always be on my mind and heart. Thanks for let me be part of your family, thanks for help me every time i needed it, and thanks for give me the best experience that i could ever have had. Thanks for everything. HAPPY MOTHERS DAY!!

love,

Ale


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