French for the Future announces the launch of registration for the United Bilingual Correspondents program. Last year, 123 students from grades 7 to 12 (secondaire 1 to cégep 1 in Québec) across Canada were paired up to exchange in French throughout the school year. In a context where linguistic insecurity can intimidate young people who want to start speaking French outside the classroom, the program is a lifeline launched to gradually begin communicating in French with another person their own age.
Following a short questionnaire, the French for the Future team will assign pen pals according to several criteria, the aim being to connect young people of the same age, from different provinces/territories, with common interests and who have chosen similar preferred means of communication (telephone, letter, text messages, email, etc.).
The program was created in 2019 by the French for the Future youth committee. Building on its success, the organization has incorporated the project as a recurring program in its repertoire. Before the program, 26% of participants said they were very confident in their ability to hold a conversation in French and express themselves in the language. This figure had risen to 52% by the end of the program. Exchanges are not only linguistic, but also cultural. By encouraging discussion between students from different backgrounds, participants are enriched by each other’s culture. French for the Future sends out monthly conversation topics to encourage dialogue on a variety of subjects.
Registrations are open until September 29. For further details and to schedule interviews with participants in the 2022-2023 program, please contact Agathe Pompon at firstname.lastname@example.org.