What are United Bilingual Correspondents?
In January 2019, the Bilingual Young Leaders came up with the idea to create a program for youth, by youth. The goal of the United Bilingual Correspondents program is to connect French-speaking youth from across the country who share common interests. It is open to students in Grade 7-12 (Secondary I-Cégep 1) who want to meet bilingual Canadians from other provinces, enhance their language skills, or learn more about Canadian diversity!
How does this program work?
- Once you apply, you will be matched with another student. In applying, you agree to remain in contact with your correspondent until the end of the school year through any method of communication (social media, email, Skype, etc), which you will determine together.
- You will receive an email each month from French for the future with a list of themes to discuss. Through this process, you will be able to learn more about your correspondent, the Francophonie and culture in other Canadian provinces and territories.
Who can become a United Bilingual Correspondent?
- The United Bilingual Correspondent program is available for young French speakers from Grade 7 to 12 or from Secondaire 1 to Cegep 1.
- The communication will be solely in French, but can be written and/or oral. You don’t have to be an expert in French to become a Bilingual Correspondent! This program is here to help you improve.
How do I become a Bilingual Correspondent?
- To join the United Bilingual Correspondents, you will need to fill an online form, which contains questions that will help us better match you with your correspondent.
- With your parents, carefully read the Parental Consent Form. In order to upload it when signing up online, you can either print, sign and scan the document, or you can fill it and sign it directly in your computer (if you need any help, here is a video tutorial).
- Provide proof of your identity by doing one of the following three options:
– Proof of enrollment in a Canadian high school
– A photo of your student ID card
– An email from any one of your teachers confirming your identity at firstname.lastname@example.org
Be sure to upload your documents in either PDF, docx, or JPG formats.
Once you finish your application, the French for the future team will match you with another participant. You can expect to learn the identity of your correspondent the weeks following your subscription. We will contact you by email to give you their contact information.
- Create an environment that fosters improvement and practice of the French language
- Encourage the creation of connections between participants from 7th to 12th grades
- Develop an appreciation for the French language and Francophone cultures of Canada
- Raise awareness about the Canadian Francophonie’s diversity amongst French-speaking youth
- Promote open-minded thinking about the French language as a tool for personal expression
What should I do if there’s an issue with my correspondent?
If you don’t get along with your correspondent, if they disrespect you, if they don’t contact you, or if there’s another problem, please communicate with us! Contact French for the future at email@example.com so that your issue can be solved quickly and you can be matched with someone else .
When will I know if I am selected for the program?
Everyone who meets the requirements and for whom we can find a partner will be able to participate. However, we will send you an email to put you in contact with your correspondent in the weeks following your subscription.
When will I know who my correspondent is? How will we be put in touch?
After the application period, we will match correspondents based on the responses submitted on the form. You can expect to know the identity and contact of your correspondent in the weeks following your registration. You will know before November 14. We will be contacting you by email.
What if I want to quit the program?
If you want to quit the program, contact us ASAP at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you want to, you can let us know the reasons for leaving the program. However, it is important to remember that by signing up for the program, you sign up for a correspondence until the end of the school year. If you think that you will be unable to communicate for the full time, reflect before applying.
What should I use to communicate with my correspondent?
Up to you! You can communicate with your correspondent using whatever medium you prefer the most. We will send you the email of your correspondent, and you can discuss through email what mode of communication (social media, email, Skype, etc.) you prefer.
How often will I communicate with my correspondent?
It depends! You and your correspondent can discuss to see what works best for both of you. We suggest that you communicate at least twice a month.
When does the program end?
French for the future will send you emails each month until the end of the school year. If you and your correspondent have become good friends, keep going! You will no longer be part of the program during the summer, but are still encouraged to remain in contact.
I don’t know what to say to my partner. Do you have any suggestions?
Don’t worry! Each month, you will receive an email with some more ideas on themes to talk about. However, if you still need ideas, don’t hesitate to contact us.
How much does it cost to participate?
Still have questions about the United Bilingual Correspondents program? Contact us at email@example.com.