ESL Volunteering

by Lillian V
(Toronto, Canada)

Many communities have ESL programs within their high schools, and libraries often have 'conversation circles' for new immigrants.These are free of charge, and for those who would like to volunteer, but are restricted due to low income, there is sometimes room in the budget for travel assistance, usually in the form of transit tickets.

I have assisted and mentored lower level students in high school, as well as one-on-one reading/writing on a business level at government/business LINC classes
that offers business training skills to those who wish to enter or re-enter the workforce, or to start a business.There are 'business level' night classes, for a fairly low fee.The programs are under annual review, so the volunteers are required to be flexible.There are regular training sessions to keep up to date.

In my 30+ years of ESL volunteering, I've proudly watched people with seemingly impossible language barriers, reach their highest goals. Many of them keep in touch and let me know of their ongoing progress
through the years.

If ESL volunteering appeals to you, check your government white pages, the local library, high school and community centre.

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