Within 10 work days after arrival in the US all adult refugees must be enrolled in English as a Second Language classes (ESL). Participation in ESL classes is a requirement for refugees to receive cash assistance from the government.
- Contact the local community college and inquire about enrolling in ESL classes.
GUILFORD COUNTY: Guilford Technical Community College - (336) 454-1126 x55026 - 901 South Main St., High Point, NC
FORSYTH COUNTY: Forsyth Technical Community College - (336) 734-7984 - West Campus, 1300 Bolton Street, Winston-Salem 27103
- An interpreter is not necessary for ESL enrollment/orientation.
- Refugees will go through a testing process during the orientation to assess their English level.
Guilford County: Testing and orientation is a three-day process and is Monday through Wednesday, 9am-12pm.
- Transport the refugee(s) to and from the orientation or help them learn how to get there using public transportation.
- Volunteers do not need to stay for the orientation, but may want to walk their refugee partners in at first.
- Notify the World Relief case manager that enrollment is complete.
- Assure refugee partner(s) know when they need to be in class.
- Assist refugee(s) in learning how to take public transportation to the ESL class.
- Note: You may research or contact the World Relief case manager to find out if any other ESL classes are offered in the community where the refugee lives.
In order to receive cash assistance from the government for their first three months in the US, refugees are required to attend English as a Second Language (ESL) classes. There are also various other options for additional ESL practice. Refugees arrive in the US with various levels of English skills, ranging from fluency to illiteracy.
WRHP’s Role: WRHP enrolls students in school and in ESL classes at GTCC. Volunteer’s Role: Volunteers can assist refugee clients in learning English in the following ways:
1. Learning public transportation: Helping the refugees learn how to use and navigate the public transportation system to get to and from ESL class on their own.
2. Friendship: By building a friendship with a newcomer, English practice will naturally occur. Whenever you spend time together, be supportive and intentional in your communication and you’ll be surprised at how quickly they will grasp your meaning.
3. Conversation Partner: Volunteers can be assigned to a refugee who is in particular need of learning English and visit him/her once a week (flexible) and practice English. Volunteers do not need ESL experience to be a conversation partner.
4. ESL Practice: Once newcomers are enrolled in classes, volunteers can assist them in several ways. Volunteers can help familiarize refugees with transportation to and from ESL classes and assist refugees with ESL homework from class. Volunteers can assist WRHP staff in the following ways, in addition to those listed above:
- Resource Developer: Volunteers can create new ESL materials that other WRHP volunteers and newcomers can utilize.
- Tutoring: Volunteers can tutor refugees one-on-one.