Moving to a new country for a job is both a physical and emotional change. When children are involved, this change can seem overwhelming at times. It is important to recognize that children process stresses in different ways, so addressing these changes during the move can help both parents and children adjust more easily.
A good place to start is by asking children what emotions they have towards the move. Are they excited, nervous, scared, or homesick? For the accompanying family, being prepared for cultural and lifestyle differences can greatly impact the success of the assignment and experiences abroad. Family members who can adapt to their new home are often happier with the relocation and can provide important emotional support. Families who have experienced a successful international assignment also become tremendous advocates for new experiences and travel.
Youth Intercultural Training: To help achieve a successful relocation for the whole family, Dwellworks offers Youth Intercultural Training for children ages 7-15. These training sessions provide children with the information and skills they need to foster a positive intercultural experience. Topics of discussion include friendship expectations, local foods, public behavior, school and language concerns, and sports and leisure activities. Hearing this information in-person from a certified Intercultural Trainer helps children understand life in their new destination.
Youth Add-On Program: Additionally, Dwellworks offers an abbreviated program, the Youth Add-On Program. This program is available when delivered in conjunction with adult Intercultural Trainings for relocating employees. It can be delivered either pre-departure or post-arrival. The Youth Add-On Program incorporates an age-appropriate learning style and content to help address the most common topics and challenges children experience when living in a new country.
Cultural awareness is essential to the success of an international assignment. Studies show that organizations that embrace cultural awareness can avoid serious misunderstandings – saving time, money, and key business relationships.
What can’t be forgotten is that familial success and happiness are vital to a relocating employee’s success, making children’s training a valuable option for relocating families. Intercultural training is an invaluable tool that provides international assignees with the critical cultural information necessary to succeed both professionally and personally in your new country.