One of the earliest activities of ESRA Modiin is English tutoring of students in their senior year of high school. Every year, after the High Holidays and until Pesach, once a week for two hours, our dedicated volunteers meet with the students in several Modiin high schools. The purpose of these meetings is to help the students improve their spoken English in preparation for their Bagrut exams. Most of the students have a good level of English but are shy when it comes to speaking it, and this is where the ESRA volunteers come in.
These meetings benefit the students but also bring great pleasure and satisfaction to the volunteers. After the initial ice is broken, these lovely young people, just a few short months before they leave school to go into the army and the grown-up world, are willing to share their views and dreams with these total strangers who are eager to listen to them.
One of the English teachers who coordinates the volunteers wrote to us:
"We loved having your wonderful volunteers ...take the time to help our students. The students not only benefited from the hours spent with the volunteers on an academic level, but also on a personal level. They really respected the fact that people would take time out of their schedule to come and help others ... I spoke about this with my class when the time came to say farewell to the volunteers, and from that conversation my class came up with the idea, on their own, to write thank you notes in English, which we attached to a small gift to each of them. We would, of course, love to have you meet with a new group of students next year. Thank you for all the time, energy and love that you have shown our students throughout the year."
One of our volunteers had this to say: "The kids were wonderful and I had a fantastic experience working with them. ...Thanks for the thanks, not necessary, it was my real pleasure."
Such positive feedback from the school coordinators and our volunteers alike is a strong incentive for ESRA Modiin to continue with the tutoring program and try to reach more high schools in our city. We believe that involving volunteers with the schools is an excellent way for immigrants and newcomers to Modiin to become part of the community. It really is a win/win proposition.
To tutor in Modiin in the next academic year, call Katarina 052 424 9528; Vicky 054 494 9698.