Rotary Foreign Exchange Student Program, Sept. 18, 2019

Foreign exchange students from around the world enjoy a weekend in Big Bear Lake Sept. 14 at the Christian Conference Center. The students participate in the Rotary Club International program.

Many are aware of at least some of what Big Bear Lake Rotary Club does — the Fourth of July Fireworks Barbecue, the Santa program where multiple Santas visit homes throughout the Valley to deliver stockings before Christmas and the Senior Holiday Luncheon. But many may not know that Rotary International has one of the largest foreign exchange student programs in the world.

Every year Rotary supports approximately 8,000 high school students, who leave their native country to travel to a foreign country for an entire academic year. And locally, the Big Bear Lake Rotary Club has been involved in Youth Exchange since 1973.

“Rotary’s involvement in Youth Exchange is one of the best kept secrets,” said Dick Shaw, Big Bear Rotary Club member and Youth Exchange Chair for the district.

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