1.5 Billion and Growing

In two weeks, The Women’s Group’s Spring 2016 session will come to a close. The Women’s Group is a program for women residing in refugee camps and disadvantaged neighborhoods in Nablus with a focus on the mothers of children in TYO’s Core Child Program. This session, TYO has been proud to offer fitness and nutrition classes taught by our Spring 2016 Zahi Khouri Fellow, Beginner’s English classes, and educational seminars that focus on mental health, physical well-being, and child-rearing. Rulla, Nisreen, and Qamar enjoy English class.

The women have been enjoying and benefitting from educational seminars and fitness and nutrition classes for many years. However, in the Fall 2015 session, TYO’s beneficiaries articulated a need, desire, and interest to learn English to better equip themselves to help their children with their English homework, better communicate with monolingual English speakers, and learn a critical new skill that would increase their overall confidence. The classes have been a tremendous success and week after week the women come to class having completed their homework, armed with an arsenal of questions, and ready for new challenges that await them. The women enjoy lively competitive games where they must use their newly found conversation skills to complete group activities. They have demonstrated a marked increase in their confidence and are already inquiring about additional English classes in upcoming sessions.

According to a Washington Post article, TYO’s beneficiaries are in good and plentiful company: while “English lags behind in the number of native speakers, it is by far the world's most commonly studied language.” Given the global ubiquity of the language, there are a colossal 1.5 billion English language learners in the world and TYO is proud that our Women’s Group beneficiaries have been added to that number.

Vanessa, Women's Empowerment Program Coordinator