The billeting concept is something of a hockey tradition, and is especially important at the Junior A level of hockey. It involves host families opening their homes to out-of-state players, and provides an opportunity for these young men to pursue the next step in their developing hockey careers. The billet programs also allows individuals to complete high school educations, take college classes, and/or pursue part-time employment in the local community.
The Glacier Nationals feels that one of the components of success is to provide a comfortable living environment for each of our billet players. One of the most difficult things for the high level hockey player is moving away from home. Much is expected of these players both on and off the ice and the added demands of such foreign situation often creates added stress for them. As a result, we strive to find homes that provide a positive family environment. To help alleviate such inherent anxieties, our players, in turn, are strongly encouraged to embrace the challenges of moving into a new household and become actively involved with the family that has so generously welcomed them into their home.
We value the importance of the billet families who open their homes to our players and appreciate the efforts made by the entire family in making our players’ transition easier. Being a billet family can be a very rewarding experience. Strong bonds are often made between the player, his parents and the billet family, which frequently carry on well after the player has moved on to the next level.
The Glacier Nationals Jr. A Hockey Club, the players, and their families appreciate the commitment, generosity and dedication of our billet families. The Glacier Nationals are pleased to help coordinate this program for our players, and encourage any families that are interested to read the following frequently asked questions and contact us with your interests.
John & Becky Huntington 406-945-2702 406-945-2343
Frequently Asked Questions about the Billet Program.
Q. Do we have what it takes to be a billet family?
A. It is of great importance to the Glacier Nationals Junior A Hockey Team that we place our out-of-town players in caring family environments that are committed to providing a supportive home away from home. Opening your home takes time, patience, and a willingness to share. There will be differences to overcome, both cultural and personal, but learning about these differences and celebrating them is part of the joy of welcoming someone new into your home.
Q. What makes a great billet family?
A. A supportive and patient family. It can be overwhelming for a player to be so far away from home. A thoughtful billet family appreciates that each player is unique, and that communication and mutual understanding takes effort. Our billet families are interested in sharing their lifestyle in a positive and mutually rewarding way.
Q. Do I have time for a player?
A. Even the most self-assured players appreciate good quality time with their billet family. Will you be in town for the duration of your player’s stay? (Absences longer than two days must be made known to our billet coordinator in advance.) Is everyone in your household ready to accept someone with a different background? If you have children, are they comfortable with bringing another person into the family?
Q. Can a family host more than one player?
A. Yes. Two (or more) players can share living quarters, transportation expenses and provide camaraderie for one another.
Q. What does the billet family provide?
A. A separate room for the player (or a shared room for 2 players) furnished much as a college dorm would provide for a student: bed and clothing storage.
Nutritious meals. A patient, caring and friendly home atmosphere.
The same guidance and attention you would want for your own children.
Q. What are the player’s responsibilities?
A. As a member of the household, players are expected to show respect and consideration for all host family members. They are required to follow all household rules as well as share in the daily chores, maintain their own room and do their own laundry.
Q. How long does the billet last?
A. September to March (depending on playoffs)
Q. Is there compensation to the host family?
A. Yes, families receive a monthly billeting payment of $350.00 for each player. Besides offsetting the expenses a family incurs when hosting a player, the compensation acknowledges the invaluable service families provide to the individual players and the Glacier Nationals. You also receive 2 season tickets.
Q. What are the benefits of being a billet family?
A. A new perspective on hockey, as seen through the eyes of your elite player.
A firsthand understanding of being a hockey fan.
The opportunity to make a difference in a young man’s life.