Refugee Job Mentoring
Catholic Charities is building their database for job mentoring volunteers for refugees. Fields they’re looking for include
- Oil & gas industry
- QA/QC engineering
- Crane operation
- Vet tech
- Daycare provider
New Roots for Refugees continue to grow
There’s still time this fall to support refugees at area farmers’ markets. The markets that continue through October with farmers from the program are: Overland Park Farmer’s Market (Saturdays), Brookside Farmer’s Market (Saturdays), Parkville Farmer’s Market (Saturdays), Historic Downtown Liberty Farmer’s Market (Saturdays), and City Market Farmer’s Market (Saturdays and Sundays).
Refugee tutor training success @ St. Paul’s
from Janean Grogan
On September 28 and October 5, Sara Williams and Kasey Featherston from the Catholic Charities Refugee Learning Center met with 17 St. Paul’s volunteers to share their experience with doing one-on-one English tutoring to home-bound refugees, like women with young children, who are unable to attend classes at the Refugee Learning Center at 2220 Central Ave., Kansas City, KS.
Sara and Kasey shared information and experiences as well as guidelines for tutoring and an introduction to the teaching materials used from Intercambio, a non-profit. Volunteers can specify their best availability and when they can start and will be matched with a refugee within two months. The time commitment is 1.5 – 2 hours per week for 3-4 months.
Refugees are anxious to learn English and start their new lives. The initial meeting is with the refugee, caseworker, interpreter, and volunteer tutor. Language skills have already been assessed, so refugees start with the correct level of workbook for their skills. The group looked at some sample lessons and practiced some teaching activities. A refugee may want to begin with practical things like names of foods and their surroundings, instead of the planned lesson. They might want to know how to fill out a form or study for their driver’s license exam. As long as they are learning the language, these things can be incorporated in their lessons. If they have other questions, like how to solve a problem, we were instructed to help them with the vocabulary they need, like “leaky faucet,” and then direct them to their case worker or landlord for help.
All refugees have fled their countries due to persecution for race, religion, nationality, social group, or political opinion and have been in refugee camps for an average of 17 years. All enter the U.S. legally. They have all gone through a lengthy refugee resettlement process as required by the United Nations and the U.S. State Department. More and more Syrian refugees are starting to be resettled in our area, but, in 2015 and much of 2016, most came from Burma, Bhutan, Iraq and Afghanistan.
Thank you to everyone who participated! You will make a huge difference in someone’s life. If you weren’t able to attend, contact Janean Grogan at firstname.lastname@example.org to learn when other tutor trainings will be available.