It was volunteering for SAVTE in 2002 that originally inspired me to train as an ESOL teacher, so I was delighted to re-join the SAVTE team in 2014 in a role to train and support volunteers.
My job involves assessing the needs of learners, matching them with a volunteer and then supporting this partnership as it develops. I am also involved in devising and delivering different training programmes. Based in S6, I support learners and volunteers in Hillsborough, Netherthorpe, Upperthorpe and surrounding areas, as well as the city centre.
Teaching English has taken me to many places. After teaching community ESOL classes for the WEA in Sheffield, I spent 4 years at Leeds City College teaching and running ESOL/GCSE programmes. I then moved to Lyon in France and spent 4 years teaching in businesses, universities and colleges. I loved my time in France and now understand a lot more about how difficult and amazing language learning is!
Not being able to communicate can be a very lonely experience. Our volunteers do an incredible job helping to reduce isolation and enabling learners to feel more connection to Sheffield and their local community. I’m very proud to be part of this.