Asoguabo offers English lessons to everyone interested. Guess who’s teaching? Me and my roommate Sandy Brown – the two foreign volunteers.
Well, Sandy isn’t actually a volunteer. She’s a post-graduate student collecting material for her thesis on Fair Trade, but she wants to help the cooperative while she’s here.
Last tuesday we taught our first classes – the advanced level at 8 in the morning, and the basic level at 16 in the afternoon.
The previous volunteers, Tiina Lehtinen and Waltteri Katajamäki, started the classes in september, and we’re picking up where they left off.
In the beginning tens of people were interested, and many of them attended, but only a handful are left. We asked a few of them why, and the answer was that the schedule didn’t suit everyone, and that many people just don’t have the time.
On tuesday we started by getting to know each other and asking the participants what they want to learn.
– Conversation! And at the office we help the farmers with the paperwork when they’re travelling, so that terminology is important, says Georgia Nieto who works as an accountant for the Asoguabo social fund Promesa, which manages the Fair Trade social premium money.
-I want to practice situations at the airport, like questions you might get at immigration and customs, says the farmer Wilson Navarrete.
We agree on practicing airport situations next time.
The participants on the basic level have similar wishes.
-I want to learn to speak English when I’m travelling, like asking people to recommend sights. In march I’m going to Brazil, but I don’t speak Portuguese, says Jenny Matute who sells natural products.
-Most of all, I want to learn to talk, says her niece Ivette Regalado.
And with that, we can help, even though we’re not English teachers. Best of all: our students are teaching us Spanish at the same time!