When we committed to a partnership with the Episcopal Diocese of Olympia Refugee Resettlement Office, our commitment was formalized through a Commitment Form both parties signed. This form includes a list of activities our team wants to assist with. Among these is a focus on language acquisition. The family we are working with includes grammar school, middle school, and high school aged children, plus the Mom and Dad. We have an active, clever, and enthusiastic team currently meeting with the family at least two days a week. Team members provide individualized sessions based on the age of the children, and the degree to which individuals are learning.
The team leader, a member of Prospect UCC, (one of our partners) reports that the parents are at the beginning stage, while the older kids are easier, in fact the oldest is the interpreter for the rest of the family. The focus for the younger children is school readiness. None of the children are currently attending school as their housing has been transitory (four moves since arriving in Seattle on January 21, 2022). We expect to hear any day that their permanent housing, a four-bedroom apartment in Renton, is ready for them. When this occurs, all the children will enroll in school. All family members are eager to learn. The enthusiasm of the younger kids is energetic and infectious. The ambitions and dedication of the older boys is inspiring. They are approaching their own version of “The American Dream” with optimism and hope.