What is the Holyoke Tutor/Mentor Program?
Do you read the newspaper? Can you fill out forms and applications? Can you write a check? For many adults in Holyoke such daily tasks are out of reach. These adults may have left school at an early age or without learning basic skills. Or they may have come to Holyoke with a dream of economic opportunity, but are unable to speak, read or write in English. Many such people enroll in adult education classes, and are striving to fulfill their dreams and better their employment opportunities.
The Holyoke Tutor/Mentor Program was established in 1991 to supplement existing adult education programs in Holyoke. We recruit, train and support a pool of tutors who work with learners already studying English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) or Adult Basic Education (ABE).
Who Are Tutor/Mentors?
A wide variety of people volunteer with us. They come from Holyoke, but also from Chicopee, South Hadley, Northampton, Longmeadow and other towns in Massachusetts and Connecticut. They range in age from young adults to our most senior citizens. They are self-employed, retirees, college students, teachers, homemakers, and more. Each tutor has some time to share each week, believes change comes through education, and enjoys working with people and learning about other cultures.
Why Do We Need Tutors?
ABE funding is very limited and does not meet the needs of our community. As of the beginning of 2010, roughly 500 people were on a waiting list to get into one of Holyoke's ESOL or ABE classes. Placing tutors in classes allows students to get more support, which enables them to progress more quickly and free up slots for those who are waiting.
For more information please see the Holyoke Tutor/Mentor Program website.