Come to the Heartland of America and enjoy a cultural exchange in Columbus, Ohio.
In 2019, I spent 3 months in Europe as a Workaway volunteer and loved every minute! Now I’m home and want to offer a cultural exchange to international visitors. In addition, Americans exploring different regions of our country are welcome, too.
I have received my COVID vaccine and have a certificate to establish that I’m fully vaccinated. I also received a booster vaccine in October 2021. All Workaway volunteers who visit must establish full vaccination, and a negative Covid test from a sample taken 72 hours before arrival.
If I request a Covid test during your stay, I will pay for it.
As of October 2021, almost all public places are requiring masks. If you do not have masks, I can supply them. You are not required to wear a mask in my home, as I am fully vaccinated and so are you.
I live in a quiet, pleasant neighborhood that is centrally located in the Columbus metropolitan area, with tree-lined streets, grass yards, and pretty gardens.
Within a few steps of my home, there are cafés, restaurants, pizza shops, and various stores.
The Ohio State University is within two miles, but many students are attending classes online, so the student areas are not as buzzy with activity as usual.
I have a bicycle available for visitors. It isn’t a fancy, sleek bike, but there are some super greenways to explore. There are also some large parks for hiking, and I can provide transportation to those locations or you can bike there.
A city bus comes within three blocks of my house. Columbus is served by the John Glenn Columbus International Airport and by the Greyhound inter-city bus line.
The nearest train service is in Cincinnati, Cleveland, and Lima/Toledo, Ohio. (All of these cities are about 2 hours away from Columbus by car.)
At present, some museums are open. The Franklin Park Conservatory is open, as well as a few historical sites. I can’t really predict how many things will be open or closed! When I know more about your interests, I can design some cultural experiences for you.
My background? I was a high school teacher for a number of years, and then I went to law school. As an attorney, I worked for state and federal courts and a large law firm. Now I’m retired. Before the pandemic, I loved working as a writing coach for local college students, helping them write papers and dissertations. I also did free-lance work as a private cook before the pandemic.
I have a garden and grow vegetables and flowers, and have apple trees — there’s lots of outdoor work from March through October. The winter weather, I’m sorry to say, often involves grey skies and cold rain, although we do have snowy days.
I look forward to discussing the possibilities with you!
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help around the house
Close to my house is The Ohio State University, one of the 3 largest universities in the U.S., with more than 60,000 students. The University offers music events and cultural events, but it has been somewhat limited since Covid-19.
There are many cafe’s, bistros, art galleries, sports fields, theaters, and museums, as well as venues for contemporary and classical music. I will be happy to arrange transportation to museums and other sites of interest. [Again, it is difficult to know what will be available during the pandemic.]
I am a tour guide at the Ohio Supreme Court and would enjoy showing it to you and explaining about state and federal government and law, if that would interest you. [Update: The building may be open or not, depending on current circumstances.]
I can help you with learning English. Before Covid, I worked part-time as an ESL teacher and writing coach for university students.
In addition, Columbus is close to Native American landmarks, such as The Great Serpent Mound, which has been designated a National Historic Landmark. It is outdoors and will probably be open. There are other Native American sites if you are interested.
Also, there are Amish and Mennonite communities in Ohio, and many people like to visit these unique villages. I will be happy to take you there if you are interested.
I would love to have help with things such as
(1) Gardening and yard work
(2) Household help such as sweeping, doing dishes, laundry
(3) Clerical, such as sorting and scanning documents.
This host offers a language exchange
I’m an expert in English, having taught English literature, published papers, and edited journals. I’m working to learn more French, and I have learned a few phrases in Italian and Korean!
A private room and private bath on
the second floor (the “first” floor in Europe).
I will provide food for 3 meals a day but will let you prepare your own breakfast and lunch.
For breakfast, I’ll provide foods such as bread, butter, jam, eggs, fruit, yogurt, coffee, tea, milk, juice, and cereals, for you to prepare your own meal. As for lunch, there will be bread, cheese, sandwich fillings, soup ingredients, pasta, rice, etc.
With regard to dinner, we’ll both participate in preparing it. If you cook, you can take charge of some dinners!
I can accommodate some but not all food preferences. For example, if you need gluten-free bread or non-dairy milk, there is a store within one block where you can purchase these items.
(This is a no-smoking location. Smoking is not permitted anywhere on the property.)
While here, it may be required to wear a mask in some settings. Restrictions are changing. And it’s always required to wash hands properly when entering the house, cooking, and so forth.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
I recently replaced the modem and router, so the wi-fi should be good.
Maximum 25 per week, average 5 hours per day. Two consecutive full days off, free. If you prepare your own meals separately from supplies I provide, that time is not part of your volunteer hours. But if we prepare a meal together, we will count that time.