Friday, September 21, 2007

We Are Inundated!!! Help!

Buried in Referrals!!
The latest update from Home Tutoring Central finds your volunteer coordinator buried under a teetering stack of new refugee referrals. Yikes! Thirty-something this month (so far) with more coming every day.

If you are currently between students or have taken a break from tutoring, please consider working with someone new. The bulk of the new arrivals live at 13th and Yosemite, S. Quebec at Yale, and in Glendale (Mississippi and Colorado). There are others randomly scattered throughout the metro area.

The new arrivals are coming mostly from Burma, as well as Somalia, Ethiopia, and Iran (Baha'i Faith). Iraqis are due to arrive soon. All levels of education/literacy and economic background are represented. There are also many referrals for clients who are senior citizens or who have a variety of physical disabilities from deafness and partial blindness to limited mobility. These refugees are perhaps the most isolated of all.

Let me know if you can take on another student (fingers crossed). Thank you!

Iraqi Refugees are Finally Arriving

In case you missed it, the local media heavily covered the arrival of the first Iraqi family of many scheduled to arrive in Denver. Click on the links to read the articles.
Denver Post: Click here
Channel 4: Click here
Rocky Mountain News: Click here
Channel 9: Click here
Photo © Denver Post/Brian Brainerd

I have one Iraqi student in my class at this time. She has told me again and again that the refugees who are coming here are very frightened and they worry that Americans will dislike anyone from Iraq. I asked what we should do to show that's not true, and she said, "Smile. Say hello. Be kind. Welcome." --SM

Friday, September 14, 2007

Brush up on your skills!!

The best inservice training ever!
Back to Basics: Techniques for Every Tutor
Saturday, September 29, 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
EGOS 1250 Welton St., downtown Denver -- Room 146

You asked for it, and your requests have been heard! Join us for an in-service training and brush up on your teaching skills. Three top-notch ESL professionals are coming to share what they know. Don’t miss this excellent opportunity to learn from the pros! Everyone who attends will receive a canvas tote bag!

· Literacy fundamentals: Working with the low-level learner

Katie Collins, MA
Katie has taught ESL at all levels and currently works with literacy-level refugee students. She is also an instructional specialist in the Work Intensive Skills Program
·Speaking and listening activities with authentic applications
Kim Hosp, MA
Kim currently teaches an intermediate refugee ESL class and
is also a specialist in the Work Intensive Skills Camp Program at EGOS

·Integrating grammar into everyday lessons

Dana Harper, MA
Dana’s teaching background includes teaching ESL at the
university level. She currently teaches a number of advanced-level refugee and regular ESL classes at EGOS

The day will be broken up into two parts: The same three sessions will be presented twice so you'll be able to attend two classes in one day. Each class is 75 minutes long. We’ll start with a 15-minute introduction and there will be one 15-minute break between sessions.

ï Please RSVP before Thursday, September 27 ð

Monday, September 10, 2007

Movie night September 13!!

You are invited to a special screening of the award-winning PBS documentary:

Rain in a Dry Land
Thursday, September 13

Emily Griffith Opportunity School, R
oom 123
6:30 p.m. gather and introduction

6:45 p.m. Movie starts

For a refugee, the distance between an African village and an American city is measured in much more than miles. It is a journey of enormous cultural, physical, personal and emotional adjustment. Rain in a Dry Land chronicles two years of that journey for two Somali Bantu families.

Resettlement brings surprises and challenges as the newcomers confront racism, urban poverty, and major 21st-century culture shock. The film captures every step of this process as parents struggle to create a stable, safe haven for their war-torn families, and children struggle to navigate the social and academic challenges of school.

Each person’s unique experience provides an outstanding opportunity for Americans to learn about refugees in the U.S. and to see ourselves and our culture through new eyes. This film is compelling, emotionally moving, and very thought-provoking.

For more information about the film, visit
EGOS is located at 1250 Welton St., Denver, CO 80204

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Check out our sister site!

Exciting things are happening! We recently embarked on a new adventure with the Saturday Ladies' Group at Grace Apartments. This project didn't take off, it blasted off!
Check out our little blog at

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Help Hajia, support peace

Come support PeaceJammers!

  • What: Barnes and Noble Book Fair benefiting the Omega Women's Conference PeaceJam Team
  • Where: Barnes and Noble at 960 S. Colorado Blvd. (Just north of Mississippi Ave.)
  • Time: 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. Sept. 7-8-9.
Please come and show your support! Click this link to pull up a printable version of the PeaceJam Barnes and Noble Voucher: ,or stop by the PeaceJam table to pick one up. You must have a voucher for your purchase to count toward the fundraiser.

Why should you do this?
PeaceJam has an incredible opportunity to send student representatives to the Omega Women's Conference in New York! This conference features over 600 women leaders including all of the women who have won the Nobel Peace Prize!

Hajia Muya, a Somali Bantu refugee living in Denver, is among the 10 amazing young women who were awarded a scholarship to attend the conference. Entrance fees, meals and hotels are paid for through this scholarship, but funds are still needed for airfare.

If you need to buy books for school or fun, or perhaps a CD or a gift, buy it at the Barnes & Noble on S. Colorado Blvd. this weekend so that your purchase will benefit these young women!

Monday, September 3, 2007

We take it for granted

The next time you stand in your kitchen and turn on the faucet, think for a moment what it would be like if nothing came out. Access to clean water is one of the most serious crises facing people around the world. In Somalia, a reporter gives his account of a seemingly simple problem that is incredibly complicated to fix. This article from Slate is worth five minutes of your time--it's valuable food for thought.