We care about using our gifts to help our local community. Over and over, we've heard refugees lament about their struggle to learn English here in Amarillo. Moreover, English teachers & ESL ministries are struggling to cope with the diversity of languages & cultures in their classrooms. Refugees are struggling to find people with whom to speak English. There are vast barriers between our refugees and everyone else.
In a nutshell, the RLP opens doors within the refugee community by directly meeting language needs. Language is the tool, but missional community is the goal.
Our initial projects include the following:
Teacher Training: offering group ESL trainings and observing & coaching ESL teachers in a 1-on-1 format
Coordination: developing a network of ministries that serve refugees so we can share and support one another
Leadership development: identifying refugees who want to impact their own communities and offering them 1-on-1 language & culture mentorship
Table Talk: providing opportunities for refugees to practice English in an informal way while providing low-commitment opportunities for interested residents to get to know refugees and their families
I can't teach English! How can I be any help?
You can be a big help! People have a wide range of skills, and none of them is more important than another. First and foremost, you may be interested in just attending Table Talk. Everyone who comes will get a free meal. All you have to do is show up and talk about the topic of the day. You'll meet an important need for a refugee, and get free food. Can you imagine a better use for an hour of your time?
If that's outside your comfort zone, consider volunteering to provide food for an event, take pictures or video for the website, or help with administrative tasks. Maybe you'd even like to join us at a meeting as we pray and develop our long-term strategies?
Will you come speak to our church, small group, or business?
Absolutely! We would love an opportunity to share about our project with your group. Not only do we need community support, but we believe the community needs to know what we're doing. You can connect the dots!
We are happy to share about our programs, but we are also happy to provide culture training to help you meet your own goals.
ESL stands for "English as a Second Language". In this context, it refers to English instruction for those who have a first language other than English. There are many acronyms that are used in overlapping ways, including ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages). English learners are often called ELLs ("English Language Learners").
Do you work with groups other than refugees?
While the greatest needs in Amarillo involve refugees, our scope is broader. Our linguistic strengths enable us to work with all immigrants, regardless of which category they fall under.
Do you work with children?
Initially, our focus is on adults. Ryan's training is focused on adult learning. As others join us in the future, perhaps we will be able to address those needs as well.
How much of my donation will go to the RLP?
100%! The only deductions incurred are small credit card transaction fees. Your money supports our director and pays for training materials, events, and stationery. Nothing else. Ultimately, however, Redeemer Christian Church reserves full discretion for all funds entrusted to its care.
Who do I write the check to?
Address all checks to Redeemer Christian Church, and put "Refugee Language Project" in the memo line.
Can I set up recurring payments?
Yes! That's the primary way this project is supported. Go to Redeemer Christian Church's giving page and direct your donation toward the Refugee Language Project. On this page you can provide your personal information and set up the frequency of your donations. Through this page we encourage you to set up an account with Qgiv—the donation manager—so you can review your gifts and make changes anytime. Click here to get more detailed instructions.
Is the RLP a 501(c)(3) non-profit?
We are currently developing our non-profit structure. In the meantime, we are overseen by Redeemer Christian Church. Redeemer has tax-exempt status, so any gifts given to the project are tax-deductible.
How are you kept accountable?
The funds raised for the RLP are overseen by RCC's staff and board of elders. The RLP aims to be transparent about its financials. To this end, the Financial Accountability page will hold annual reporting documents. If you have any questions about our financial status, please just ask.
Are you involved in bringing refugees into Amarillo?
Absolutely not. The RLP exists to serve the refugees who are already here. We want to make our community healthier and stronger. Our region is struggling due to the overwhelming number of refugees who have arrived, and we want to address some of the biggest barriers that prevent them from integrating into our society.