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Friday, May 24, 2024

El Centro’s Marianna Geraskina Speaks to Radio Boston About Crucial Need for ESL Classes

In a recent Radio Boston segment, host Tiziana Dearing spoke with WBUR Reporter Simón Rios, and longtime Director of Catholic Charities Boston’s El Centro Adult Education Center, Marianna Geraskina, about the importance of making high-quality ESL classes more accessible to immigrants living in the state’s emergency shelter system, as they prepare to enter the workforce.

With a recent funding bill now limiting shelter residents’ stay to a total of nine months, those lacking English fluency now face the heightened challenge of quickly overcoming the language barrier and securing a job that will allow them to afford permanent housing. Marianna said she and her fellow staff are committed to addressing this challenge by helping as many immigrants as possible become fluent in English and harness their unique skills and strengths as they seek employment.

“From day one, when students come to apply to our program, we are trying to create a pathway for them, and this pathway is to real, good jobs that require skills and education,” said Marianna. “We tell them, ‘This is not the end. This is the beginning.’ It’s a system focused on the future of these people.”

Click here to listen to the full Radio Boston interview.

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