Lutheran Services Refugee Program
3200 University Avenue Des Moines, Iowa 50311
Contact: Nick Wuertz
LSI is an organization that continues to provide extended support services available to the Des Moines refugee community. Through English as a Second Language classes, intensive work readiness classes, elderly services, community gardening and capacity building initiatives with local service providers and community representatives, they have been able to integrate refugees to adjust to American society. Majority of the refugees LSI works with are from Nepal, Bhutan, Burma, Sudan, Burundi, Libya, Sierra Leone, Iraq, Bosnia and Vietnam.
LSI Refugee Program offers internships and volunteer opportunities in their ESL classes, intensive work readiness classes, and even childcare. They typically look for people willing to work 10-15 hours a week for an internship and prefer a basic knowledge in excel document. The hours are typically during the afternoons from 8am-2pm. There are also other opportunities to help volunteer with citizenship classes on Saturdays, depending on the scheduling.
Contact Nick Wuertz if interested, especially for internship opportunities.
Las Americas de Comunidad de Fe
Trinity United Methodist Church
P. O. Box 41006 (1548 8th St) Des Moines, IA 50311
Contact: Wendy Vazquez
Best time to call: mornings/afternoons
Las Americas is part of a church organization aimed at helping the Spanish-speaking community. There are a lot of volunteering opportunities that Trinity United has implemented in the organization. A lot of these services include ESL classes, citizenship classes, vegetable distribution, and legal classes. Every Tuesday and Thursday from 6-8pm during the school year starting in September, there are English classes for Spanish speakers. There are various different level classes that would love more English teaching assistance in the classroom. Proficiency is necessary but volunteers do not need any specific ESL background to provide service. Curriculum is provided as well. There is also a childcare program provided if volunteers are interested in working with children on Thursdays during the English classes. The citizenship classes are generally on Wednesdays from 6-8pm.
In addition, the church sets up various Latin American festivities and they often do spring break mission trips to Latin America regions. Spring of 2012 the church went to El Salvador for humanitarian work.
Contact Wendy with the information provided above if interested.