The Irish Children’s Program of Rochester is holding informational meetings throughout January for families interested in hosting a child from Belfast, Northern Ireland, in July.

Meetings will be held in various locations around the Rochester area to discuss welcoming the children into homes as part of the program’s mission to strengthen peace in Northern Ireland.

ICP brings an equal number of Catholic and Protestant children ages 10-14 to the Rochester area to experience shared activities and build understanding and trust among them. The city of Belfast is still heavily segregated along these religious lines; the children attend separate schools and live in neighborhoods dominated by one religion or the other.

The children will participate in fun activities while staying in Rochester, which will offer opportunities to interact with each other and start peace and understanding between the two religions. Host families will be exposed to another culture and build a lifelong friendship with someone in a foreign country.

Interested families must attend a meeting to be considered in hosting a child.

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