World is a Village, the homestay start-up which helps children across the world connect to discover new cultures, make new friends and improve their language skills via its Digital Journey platform, has partnered with Founders4Schools.
Founded by serial French entrepreneur, Camille Huyghues Despointes, World is a Village was originally launched as a homestay platform to connect families around the world to organise cross-border language and culture exchange trips for their teens.
The new Digital Journey, built in response to overseas homestay and school trips being cancelled due to Covid-19, is an online educational programme aimed at fostering conversation between teenagers in different countries and boosting their confidence in foreign languages.
Founders4Schools’ mission is to bridge the gap between education and the world of work.
Through this partnership, they aim to help pupils build an international network and develop their knowledge of the world around them.
Through this, young people gain essential communication skills and self-confidence that help successfully transition from education into employment.
This comes at a time when teen’s exchanges are affected, not only by Covid-19 but also by Brexit, with the UK leaving Erasmus and its school twinning programme eTwinning earlier this month.
Since 2005, 217,438 schools have benefitted from the European school twinning programme.
The World is a Village Digital Journey experience is complementary to what children are taught in school language lessons and focuses on boosting the student’s confidence by increasing the frequency of their practice in a fun and relaxed environment, with students from across the world.
The gamified platform brings teenagers together to practice a foreign language via games, quizzes and missions but also, just as importantly, opens them up to new cultures and ways of life at a time when global travel is on hold.
Despointes said: “As many secondary schools have found their normal physical exchange programmes with overseas schools curtailed due to Covid-19 and Brexit, we have found that secondary schools are particularly receptive to this idea as a replacement or complement for their physical programmes.
“This is also an innovative and affordable solution for those schools that don’t have an international exchange programme; teachers and students alike want to use technology to keep borders open and avoid being a less insular world.”