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Improving Accessibility and Creating Community with Volunteer ESOL Teachers

About This Session


Do you want to maximize your ESOL program’s access and impact on a limited budget?

Volunteers can serve not only as teachers who increase access for students inside the classroom but also as ambassadors within the community who create connections and a welcoming environment for English language learners from other countries. We’ll share our experiences running a volunteer-based ESOL program and highlight best practices for starting or continuing a program that incorporates volunteer ESOL teachers.

What we'll cover:

The focus of this workshop will be on how program administrators can promote the transformative power of trained volunteers leading English classes, fostering an environment of mutual learning where diverse experiences are celebrated, and everyone feels a sense of belonging. Volunteers can form the core of a sustainable model, not only serving as teachers, but also as ambassadors forging connections and creating a welcoming environment for people from other countries.

Intercambio was founded in 2001 to bring English learners and community volunteers together in language classes and gatherings to build skills, confidence, and life-changing connections. We have since connected over 15,000 students, volunteer teachers, and adult ESOL organizations in Boulder County, Colorado, and across the U.S. through our programs, trainings, and curriculum. This interactive workshop will share best practices from our 20+ years of experience running a volunteer-based program, including flexible training, engaging learning communities, ongoing professional development, and resources. In 2022, our resources were utilized by 500+ organizations nationwide, such as libraries, literacy coalitions, adult education centers, and faith-based organizations.

Our goal is to empower program leaders with valuable information that can be applied directly in their specific contexts. Participants will receive actionable insights and tools they can implement immediately.

Topics & Focus

Primary Topic Area
MAIN FOCUS ESL-ELL, English Language Learning
Session will also cover:
topic - volunteer support & management
topic - community partnerships & collaboration


PD other

Handouts & Materials

No handouts or materials available at this time.


Bates, Karin

Karin Bates
Curriculum and Training Specialist
Intercambio Uniting Communities

Visit Intercambio in the conference Exhibitor Area!

ROLE program administrators
LEVEL beginner
Product promotion?
Other info:



Bring a device


Breakout24 – BATES

Page checked or updated: 6/28/24

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