Support for Ukrainian Refugees

Conversation Classes held at St. Thomas More Church

Recent months have seen a large influx of Ukrainian Refugees enrolling for the classes, requiring additional tutors, additional classes and additional people to help with enrollment and administration. Our tutors have been amazing in their efforts to accommodate larger classes containing people having a wider mix of English levels.
Members of St. Gregory's Parish have played a significant role by taking on roles as tutors and interpreters, helping with administration and helping to make sure we have enough Covid test kits to allow testing of attendees before classes, as needed.
One of the Ukrainian refugee families has enjoyed attending our weekly Prayers for Ukraine on Wednesday evenings at St. Thomas More.

Conversation Classes held at St. Thomas More Church

July 2022

English Conversation Classes are held at St. Thomas More for refugees and asylum seekers on Tuesday and Friday mornings.

The make-up of classes is as follows:

Ukrainian Refugees:                              48 (approx)

Syrian, Afghan, Sudanese refugees:   12

Asylum seekers:                                      11

There are 10 Tutors, each qualified to teach English. These are provided by Cheltenham Volunteer Teachers (CVT). 3 of these are parishioners of St. Greg's.

Sue Thompson and Vera Thompson of CVT have been tireless in their efforts to make sure that anyone wishing to attend class has been able to.

There are 9 classes covering 6 levels of English from absolute beginners to those who can hold a conversation.

Two people attend the Friday classes to provide interpreting and translation assistance for the Ukrainian refugees. One of these is a St. Greg's parishioner, the other is the neighbour of a St. Greg's parishioner. 

Attendance at the classes vary for a range of reasons. For example, some of the recent Ukrainian arrivals have found employment and have stopped attending.

The attendance by the asylum seekers will be affected by their well-being, or appointments they have to attend. 

A small number of people attend more than one class; new Ukrainian refugees register most weeks.

We are currently checking which people will want to carry on with classes during the school summer holidays and which tutors will be available to teach during this period.

There is the need for more English Tutors, preferably trained or with experience in teaching English as a foreign language.

The two interpreters attend the Weekly Prayers for Ukraine held at St. Thomas More on Wednesdays to help, again with interpreting and with translation of prayers into Russian/Ukranian.

Donations of Covid Lateral Flow Tests are welcome so that class members can carry out a test before joining the class, when needed.

If anyone is interested in being a tutor or wouild like to help please contact Bill Flynn:

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