Working with AmeriCorps VISTA volunteers, Arab American Family Services (AAFS) is reaching out to veterans to help them as they return from service in the Middle East. They often do not have jobs to return to, and rely on public benefit support and turn to AAFS.
Veterans serve as a valuable resource to Arab American children in middle school and high school as they can relate to the culture and may know some of the language. AAFS is matching them up with students who need tutoring, creating a win-win situation for both the veterans and the students.
AAFS has created a tutoring program that will incorporate soldiers, youth, and community members. As Veterans come home and need to be reintegrated into their communities, they have learned that one way is to help children who are struggling in school due to language and cultural barriers.
There have been a number of accomplishments associated with the first year of the AAFS Veteran Tutoring program. AAFS held a Veterans’ Day dinner. More than 50 organizations attended the dinner at which they learned about the tutoring program. Many government officials in attendance also had a chance to learn more about our program.
The largest accomplishment was the trust that was gained by veterans who saw that AAFS cared about them and the service they did for the sake of the people. This trust led several veterans to come to the agency to get assistance in receiving public benefits.
AAFS is constantly looking for new veterans who are interested in taking part in the tutoring program. If you are a veteran, or know a veteran interested in taking part in the program, please give us a call.