It all started with a burden to bless and reach out to the Vietnamese and other migrant communities in Inala, a suburb close to Unidus Community Centre in Willawong. After months of planning and discussion with Hands of Hope Coordinator, it came to fruition in January 2017 in Peter and Ruth Truong’s dining room. There she was, looking nervous and excited at the same time – our very first Vietnamese student attending our very first English class!
Fast forward to January 2019, Hands of Hope now has 6 English classes running at the same time on the second and fourth Monday nights of every month. Our students comprise mainly Vietnamese, Chinese and Korean nationals.
We started a beginners’ class for Mandarin speakers in 2018. The students comprised people over 40 years of age from China and included teacher aides from the same age group. It progressed very well, with some students attending Sunday services and other social activities organised by Hope Church Brisbane.
Our children’s class (5 – 12 year olds) grew further in 2018, with parents delighted that their children were being taught while they studied English. We now even have parents with babies coming to class. Our English classes have a distinct family feel to it!
We also started helping some of our academic English students with their resumes and interview skills. In 2019, God willing we hope to continue helping people who are looking for jobs and need help writing their resumes as well as improving their interview skills.
We are grateful to witness the students, teachers, interpreters and teacher aides who have now become fast friends with each other. We have parties several times a year to get to know each other better and just enjoy each others’ company. As a result of this ministry, a Vietnamese life group has begun this year, with all our students being invited to come and learn about the gospel. In response to requests from our students, we may begin an English club soon for them to practise listening and speaking skills as well as make more friends.
Project Team Leader
Hands of Hope English Class Program