Photo by Danny Fulgencio

Photo by Danny Fulgencio

Looking to give something of yourself to others his new year? Commit just a couple hours a week to teaching at the Vickery Meadow Learning Center, where you can share the gift of language with hardworking immigrants.  

Though the Vickery Meadow neighborhood flanks Lake Highlands, it can feel like a separate world — some 20 different languages are spoken among the approximately 36,000 residents of the 2.86-square mile community. 

Read our January Advocate story, by contributor Pam Harris,  about the Trans.lation project, which is using art and culture to turn the tide of crime and other poverty-related problems that historically have plagued the neighborhood.

For many years, the Vickery Meadow Learning Center at 6329 Ridgecrest also has been a source of hope and enlightenment in the area.

The English teachers at VMLC all are volunteers who have taken a brief introductory course and committed to teaching one 2-hour class per week. No teaching experience or foreign language is required. Minimum age to volunteer is 18. More volunteer opportunities — mentors, computer lab aides, office help, special events coordinators, to name a few — also are available.

Attend an orientation session this Thursday (Jan. 9) to learn more. 

For more information or to check times and RSVP for orientation, email lharling@vmlc.org or 214.265.5057 x102.

Monthly in 2014, the Advocate will share a story about people in our neighborhood struggling with poverty, unemployment or other disadvantages, and we will examine efforts made to improve those difficult situations. We also will write about individuals and groups dedicated to making a difference. If you have a story to share, email chughes@advocatemag.com and write “solutions” in the subject line.