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Vocational ESL Volunteer or Intern

Start date: Ongoing
Last updated 

Volunteers work closely with the VESL instructor and early employment team to provide basic ESL classes to newly arrived refugees, asylees, SIVs, and victims of trafficking. The English taught is primarily focused on creating a vocational vocabulary for IRC clients to secure their first job although differing levels of English proficiency within our clients may require more advanced training. Volunteers will help create, develop, implement, and teach curriculum to IRC clients. This position reports to the VESL Instructor.



Volunteer: Minimum 4 hours a week for at least 4 full months

Intern: Minimum 15 hours a week for at least 4 full months or 240 hours total



  • Develop lesson plans for one-to-two ESL classes per week. Classes are held from 9:00 AM to 12:00 PM Monday through Friday and students are at the beginner to intermediate levels
  • Practice English Language Skills with students, including grammar, conversation, reading, and writing
  • Lead ESL classes and record attendance as required by the IRC
  • Provide one-on-one tutoring to students as needed
  • Provide in-home English tutoring on an individual basis
  • Complete administrative tasks, including file creation and maintenance
  • Other duties as requested by the VESL Instructor or Early Employment staff



  • All volunteers and interns must be 18+ years of age and clear a background check
  • Reliable with a strong attention to timeliness, detail, and organization
  • Excellent communication skills (both interpersonal and with supervisors)
  • Have a strong sense of personal initiative and can work independently in a fast-paced environment
  • Experience or qualification in teaching highly desirable
  • Prior experience in a multicultural setting highly desirable
  • Proficiency in Arabic, Farsi, Spanish or Tigrinya preferred



  • Gain familiarity in cross-cultural training techniques, skills development, and many other useful skills for career development
  • Learn about various challenges faced by new arrivals in the U.S.
  • Responsibility for the development and acclimation of our refugee clients



o Apply: https://rescueglobal.secure.force.com/volunteer/

o Complete a phone screening with the Volunteer Coordination Team

o Complete a Department Interview with department(s) of interest

o Pass a background check ($40 fee)

o Complete orientation and submit requested paperwork

o  Begin your service!

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