My name is Gary Tuthill and I’ve been working with Bijan Mohammadi since completing my tutor training in the Winter of 2013. I’m retired from computer programming and this is my first tutoring effort. Bijan is a pleasure to work with, and we’ve become good friends. Much of our time together has been conversation, including job application discussions, house buying evaluation and the history, culture and geography of Iran. While already able to handle the basics of life in Massachusetts, Bijan has become much more comfortable and skilled in communication in English.
Everyone has a story to tell. The Worcester Women’s Oral History Project collects, preserves, and shares the stories of Worcester women including the stories of immigrants who have lived in Worcester for many years and have established themselves as doctors, entrepreneurs, teaches, and directors of nonprofit organizations. This year WWHOP has collaborated with five Worcester organizations that work with immigrants and refugees in order to gather stories of women who have more recently emigrated from a variety of countries, including Colombia, Algeria, Brazil, China and Burma. Literacy Volunteers of Greater Worcester was one of the five collaborating nonprofits and we invite you to join us. Print out attached flyer and rsvp to WWOHP today.
We and our students were honored to collaborate with WWOHP in recording these stories and look forward to sharing the experiences with you! Please join Worcester Women’s Oral History Project and Literacy Volunteers of Greater Worcester in celebrating the completion of these immigrant women stories at the public event on 12/5/17.
Immigrant and Refugee Stories of Worcester Women
Tuesday, 12/5/17, at 5:30 pm
Worcester Public Library, Saxe Room
free and open to the public – refreshments will be served
rsvp firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
Registration is now full. Thank you to the 14 teams who registered for our upcoming event!
We will see you on Saturday, May 5th, 2018 from 5:00pm-8:00pm at Worcester State University.
An early peek at our silent auction items:
Teams of three to six players will each be given a Scrabble game board and bag of 100 tiles, and work together during three rounds of play to make as many words as possible. It’s competitive for first prize but mostly just a fun night for all levels of players!
We hope you can join us for this annual competition for adults of all abilities. Includes three Scrabble team competitions, food, beverages, gift basket drawing, silent auction items and a fun evening by all! Gather a team of 3-6 players together and see if your company or group can claim first, second or third prize over last year’s teams!
All proceeds go to a good cause…Adult English language literacy education!
Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information!
Amanda Addeo, Unum disability benefits specialist in Worcester’s Benefits Center, says volunteering with Literacy Volunteers of Greater Worcester is good for the soul.
Inside: When did you start volunteering?
Amanda: In high school, I was a member of several student organizations where we volunteered around Worcester.
Inside: Why do you volunteer?
Amanda: My motto is “my day-job pays the bills but volunteering feeds my soul.” It’s important for me to be an active member of my community and give back whenever possible, but it’s also
rewarding to see the ripple effect that comes with volunteering. Through my volunteer work, I’ve developed new skills, networked and made great friends, all while helping others. Volunteering can also be a meditative practice that helps you gain a deeper perspective of how communities connect with people.
Inside: What organizations do you volunteer for?
Amanda: I’m volunteering with Literacy Volunteers of Greater Worcester (LVGW) as a literacy tutor and member of the board of directors right now. In the past, I volunteered with Worcester State University and South High School for Massachusetts Education & Career Opportunities, Inc.’s College Success Institute. I would work with high school juniors and seniors to prepare them for college and beyond.
Inside: What does your volunteer work at LVGW look like?
Amanda: We help adults refine their literacy skills. We teach immigrants, refugees and adult basic-literacy students to read, write and speak English. Participants range from those learning English for the first time to citizens and residents of the community who are functionally illiterate or unable to manage daily living and employment tasks that require skills beyond an elementary level. Each tutor is matched with a student for weekly tutoring sessions. My tutee, Libo, is a young woman from China. She studied some English in China where she attended college, but ended up moving to the United States when her husband enrolled at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. Every Friday, Libo and I meet at a coffee shop and focus on conversation, pronunciation, reading and writing. There was a significant cultural exchange that took place as well. We talked about history, politics, cultural norms and traditions – both American and Chinese.
Inside: Do you have a favorite memory or story from volunteering?
Amanda: When Libo and I started working together she was very quiet and isolated herself from the fast-talking American lifestyle. We began with restaurant menus and transitioned to reading Hemingway and Kafka. As her English improved, her confidence did too. Libo, now funny and social, is not just a tutee but my friend. Libo welcomed the birth of her first son and lovingly calls me his auntie.
Inside: What advice would you give to others who are considering volunteering?
Amanda: Volunteering breaks barriers like illiteracy. Whether you volunteer for LVGW or another organization, you are donating your time to build a sustainable community for the future. You learn about yourself and the people you are helping, and it’s an eye-opening experience.
Interview Credits: Unum internal newsletter 9/5/2017
Our winter session will run for twelve weeks, starting on January 23. Registration will be held January 3 – 13, 2017 at our Main Office, located on the 3rd floor of the Worcester Public Library. Students may register for no more than two courses. Courses are free, but we suggest a donation of $25 to attend one course, $35 to attend two courses. Weekly attendance is expected. Please see our Winter 2017 Schedule for more information.
Join us on Saturday, May 6th, 2017 from 5:30pm-8:30pm at Worcester State University, 486 Chandler Street, Worcester MA. Learn more or register here today.
We hope you can join us for this annual competition for adults of all abilities. Includes prizes, food, beverages, raffle, cash bar prizes and a fun time! Pull a team of 3-6 players together and see if your company can claim first prize over last year’s winner, Bay State Savings Bank! Only $25 per person!
All proceeds for a good cause…English literacy education!
Please contact Sheila McManus at email@example.com for more information, sponsorship or volunteer opportunities!