Volunteer Tutors Urgently Needed

Published On November 21st 2018

Our Access2English program provides tutoring for newcomers and is seeking volunteers to help tutor adult learners in Abbotsford.

Access2English is an Abbotsford Community Services program that pairs trained community volunteers with adult newcomers who want to improve their reading, writing, speaking or math skills, but are unable to access literacy or ESL classes or programs.

There are currently over 50 students on the waiting list and their lack of opportunity to practice conversational English can hold them back from obtaining employment, attending school or qualifying to be a permanent resident.

“While improving their literacy is the main goal, newcomers also benefit from having someone they can trust and ask about life in Canada,” says Paulette Corkum, the program coordinator of Access2English.

Ideal candidates are those who have teaching or tutoring experience however training, workshops and support are provided for volunteers.

“As long as you have a passion for helping newcomers integrate, you can make a difference,” says Corkum.

One of the long-term volunteers is Don Strangway who was looking for a volunteering opportunity after a 40-year career as a doctor. He was initially concerned about having no teaching background, but took advantage of the training sessions and felt they made him better equipped to help others.

Strangway finds the opportunity to connect with people from different parts of the world the most rewarding part. While he tutors, he in turn gets to learn about other countries and experiences. Seeing how much the students benefit from one-on-one tutoring also “adds an extra spark” of enjoyment for Don.

Volunteers can arrange their tutoring sessions according to their schedule and usually commit to two to four hours a week.

To sign up as a volunteer tutor please visit AbbotsfordCommunityServices.com/volunteer or call 604.768.6277.