My inner-city neighborhood is home to around 6,600 residents, nearly 25% of whom do not speak English as their primary language.
Since English-language proficiency is a gateway to jobs and better education, some of my education major classmates and I decided to serve our neighbors through English tutoring.
Each week, I coordinate nearly 70 university students, myself included, to teach English to area residents. We go to their apartment complexes for home tutoring or teach in a local community center.
Volunteering to teach English is just part of it. The real reward comes from the formation of friendships that transcend cultural barriers.
For months, my ten-year-old student, Nora, had been asking to go to the mall for her birthday. When that day came, several of us spent the day with her and her mom exploring the wonders of the mall. The best part? It came when I was able to speak words of truth about Jesus to Nora and her mom. We were able to explain and tangibly show how dearly loved and valuable they are to us and to God.