Brazilian student bids fond farewell to the South West

Callum HunterSouth Western Times
Brazilian exchange student Duda Bellini says her final goodbyes to her host-siblings David and Robbie Kaitani at Koombana Bay.
Camera IconBrazilian exchange student Duda Bellini says her final goodbyes to her host-siblings David and Robbie Kaitani at Koombana Bay. Credit: South Western Times, Callum Hunter

An exchange student who has called Bunbury home for the past 12 months reluctantly flew back to Brazil last week.

Duda Bellini was here as part of the Rotary Club of Bunbury’s international exchange program and said she had loved her time in Australia, with school proving to be her favourite part of the trip.

“It was pretty much what I expected, I knew I was going to go to stuff and do stuff like make friends and learn better English,” she said.

“I love Australia. I’m really sad, I love it here, it’s so good,” she said.

During her time in the South West, Ms Bellini was hosted by the Kaitani family of Leschenault and studied at Australind Senior High School, coming to view her host siblings Robbie and David as actual family members.

“It’s really cool to meet new people and find families in other places,” Robbie said.

“I’ve just come back from a holiday where I went and stayed with the families I stayed with during my own exchange.”

In one form or another, Rotary has been running its exchange program for more than 90 years, with the Bunbury club having done so for more than 40.

Rotary Club of Bunbury secretary Marg Garrett said the pro-gram was about giving young people the opportunity to gain life experience through different cultures.

“Twelve months is considered a reasonable time for them ... they can actually relate to a whole group of young people and go through an academic year with them and gain an in-depth experience,” she said.

Get the latest news from thewest.com.au in your inbox.

Sign up for our emails