Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Dear Abby has some advice for you!

This is from the 10-29-2007 Dear Abby column. Some of you have asked me about this very thing, so here's advice from a pro:

DEAR ABBY: How do you stop someone from serving food you don't like? A woman I tutor was nice enough to make me a dish native to her country, and when she asked me if I liked it, I gave her a rave review (to spare her feelings). I really hated it, but now she thinks I love it, and she keeps making it for me.
How can I refuse without hurting her feelings? I don't want to continue to just accept it and have to throw it away. -- WASTING FOOD IN VIRGINIA

DEAR WASTING FOOD: Try this: "You were so kind to make it, and I thank you. But as much as I like it, it doesn't like ME -- so I cannot accept it."
It's as close to the truth as you can get without being offensive, and should successfully discourage her from making it in the future.

Click here to read this on the Dear Abby Website.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Newspaper coverage galore!

The Burmese Karen have been in the news a lot this week. There's a lot to learn and a lot to know about this population. Click on these links to read articles from the Associated Press, Rocky Mountain News, and more.

Photo by Javier Manzano, RMN
This article is from Rochester, NY, but could easily be about any community that is currently accepting refugees for resettlement. Very nice read. Click here.

Friday, October 12, 2007

It's time for the COTESOL conference!

The Colorado chapter of Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages hosts a conference every fall. You don't need to be a professional ESL teacher to attend. In fact, you can get a reduced rate on the cost of registration if you're a volunteer or student!

This year's conference will be on Friday and Saturday, November 2 & 3, at the Rennaissance Denver Hotel and Conference Center, 3801 Quebec St., in the Stapleton area of Denver.

Click here for conference information, schedules, and registration forms.

Earlybird registration ends on October 14, but if you call Larry Fisher and ask nicely, you can probably get an extension.

See you there!

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Sad news from the ESL Department

Some of you knew and had a chance to work with my colleague, Marlene Dallas. It is with great sadness that we say goodbye to Marlene, who passed away on September 29. Marlene died peacefully, in her sleep.

In 2000, Marlene took over my job as the volunteer coordinator for the classroom side of our program. She worked hard to provide support to both the teachers and the volunteers. She kept us staffed with the extra help we always needed in our classrooms. Marlene also coordinated the translated workshops for our refugee students, and she hired the guest speakers and translators for these sessions. She always took time out from her limited work hours to say hello to anyone who stopped by her desk.

She will be missed.

Refugee Admissions Numbers Announced

For the 2008 fiscal year (October 1, 2007-September 30, 2008), the President has allotted 80,000 potential refugee admissions. The allocations have been divided this way:

  • Africa . . . . . . . . . . .16,000
  • East Asia . . . . . . . . . 20,000
  • Europe and Central Asia . . 3,000
  • Latin America/Caribbean . . 3,000
  • Near East/South Asia . . . .28,000
  • Unallocated Reserve . . . . 10,000

To read the entire Presidential Determination and see information about some specific countries affected by the determination, click on the link: http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2007/10/20071002-2.html

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Refugees on screen

UNHCR, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, has a new feature on the UNHCR Website.

There is an ever-growing collection of short videos about current refugee issues. You can also watch the videos on YouTube. To see a list and descriptions of the videos, go to http://www.unhcr.org/static/home/webvideos_pre.htm and http://www.unhcr.org/static/home/webvideos.htm