There are always people arriving in Columbia whose first language is not English. Imagine how overwhelming it can be to adjust to a new culture and environment when the language you have relied on all your life just doesn't apply! One way to serve our community is to extend a friendly welcome through English as a Second Language (ESL) classes.
In 2016 we began cooperating with Lutheran Services Carolinas, a refugee resettlement agency, to host ESL classes for Syrian families at Arsenal Hill Presbyterian Church. The classes have been by invitation and have been held on Sunday afternoons. During May and June we were able to branch out a little and organize a couple of Saturday events as well.
Our fall term ESL classes are scheduled for the following times:
- Sunday, September 10, 4:00-6:00 p.m.
- Sunday, September 17, 4:00-6:00 p.m.
- Sunday, September 24, 4:00-6:00 p.m.
- Sunday, October 1, 4:00-6:00 p.m.
- Sunday, October 8, 4:00-6:00 p.m.
- Sunday, October 29, 6:00 p.m. (international potluck dinner - please contact for details)
- Sunday, November 5, 4:00-6:00 p.m.
- Sunday, November 12, 4:00-6:00 p.m.
- Sunday, December 3, 4:00-6:00 p.m.
We have been so blessed by getting to know our friends from Syria and Iraq, and we look forward to our continuing interaction with them. Without the loving sacrifice of volunteers it is impossible to have the classes, transportation to and from our church, hospitality, childcare, visits to our Syrian friends' homes, and the friendships that result.
Maybe you can join us! You are most welcome!
Please fill out the brief contact form below if you would like more information on getting involved as an ESL teacher or in another service role within our program.
Also, if you would like to make a comment or suggestion that would improve our program, please visit our ESL program feedback page and fill out the very simple form. Thank you!