“My Daughter Cried Because I Could Not Help Her”

May 22, 2019 at 10:55 PM | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on “My Daughter Cried Because I Could Not Help Her”

Every parent wants to see their child succeed in school. In fact, research shows that students tend to earn higher grades, have better attendance, are more motivated and less likely to drop out when their families are involved in their education. For LCNV learner Erica, not knowing English hindered her ability to fully engage in her daughter’s academic success. Erica writes, “I do not go to meetings at my daughter’s school because of shame and fear of not knowing how to speak English. One day, my daughter cried because I could not help her or be present at the awards of her school.”

Erica is working on learning the English language through classes with LCNV. “Now that I am studying,” she says. “I am convinced that I will be able to speak English well without fear of being wrong so I can help my daughter with everything and be able to work on what I like…The love of my daughter is what drives me to continue studying and I know that I will achieve it and fulfill my goals.”

School children may be approaching summer break, but LCNV has many learning opportunities for adults this summer. Classes are starting soon! There is still time to sign-up until May 29 – don’t miss your chance to spend summer learning English!

Visit lcnv.org/learn or call (703) 237-0866 for more information.


“I Need to Learn English”

April 3, 2019 at 8:20 AM | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on “I Need to Learn English”

Though the United States has no official national language, many new immigrants closely associate learning the English language with their new homes. For LCNV learner Natalie, knowing English is a key part of her identity. “I love America…That’s why I need to learn English,” she writes. Read her story, below.

If you would like to help LCNV learners like Natalie, consider volunteering with the Literacy Council of Northern Virginia. You can find out how to get involved at lcnv.org/volunteer.

“My name is Natalie. I’m from Vietnam. I have lived in Annandale, VA for almost three years with my husband. I love America because I live here. That’s why I need to learn English. When I’m learning English, it helps me with everything. I can go shopping. It’s good for my job and to apply for citizenship to become an American. I hope that when I have children I can take care [of them] and help my children with homework every day. I like to travel around the world with my family. I can go to a movie on the weekend with my friends in my free time. I like to watch TV, listen to music and read the news.

Now I love my life but I need to study more English. I feel happy living in the United States.”

“I Want to be Independent”

March 27, 2019 at 8:01 AM | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on “I Want to be Independent”

A new job, the ability to speak with doctors, the freedom to understand a bus schedule – for new residents of the United States, all of these things stem from the independence that learning English provides. LCNV learner Sabur writes in her essay that English will help her to “go outside alone” and navigate the world without the help of others. For LCNV’s learners, English classes open doors of independence and possibility. Read Sabur’s essay, below.

Would you like to ensure that learners like Sabur have access to affordable English classes throughout Northern Virginia? Visit lcnv.org/donate to support beginning-level English programs.

“I want to learn English because I want to help my children with their homework. I would like to communicate with other people. I want to be independent in the USA so I can go outside alone. I would like to complete my education to get a better job in my country. English is the most important language in the world. If I learn English then I can travel anywhere in the world.”

“I Have Improved”

March 20, 2019 at 8:09 AM | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on “I Have Improved”

For newly arrived residents of the United States, learning English is a gateway to the outside world. LCNV learner Semainesh writes about this in her essay, stating that “communicating was always a struggle for me since I arrived in the United States.” Luckily for Semainesh and 1500 other learners every year, LCNV’s programs are easily accessible throughout Northern Virginia, giving speakers of other languages the opportunity to learn English. Semainesh’s story underscores the importance of learning English in ensuring that all residents can be engaged in their communities.

You can help LCNV’s learners advance in their studies and reach out to their neighbors by becoming a part of LCNV’s volunteer team! Visit lcnv.org/volunteer to find out how you can get involved.

“Learning English improved my life in many ways, now that I can communicate with the outside world easier, without struggling. Communicating was always a struggle for me since I arrived in the United States. As soon as I heard about this English program, I wanted to register as soon as possible. Thanks to Ms. Martin and Ms. Hill’s help I have improved a lot, especially in communicating.

One of the reasons I believe that learning English improved my life is because I noticed myself reading a lot which helped me in many ways, mostly while grocery shopping. Grocery shopping needs a lot of reading. English isn’t a big part where I came from, mostly everything is written in my native language. Attending English class helped me improve reading and even pronouncing words correctly.

Learning English improved my life because I struggled a lot understanding what people were saying to me in English and usually I would use my daughter to come and interpret for me. Learning English was one of the difficulties I faced because of the years that I haven’t been at school.

Thanks to the teachers, I improved a lot.”

“I Want to Achieve Something”

March 13, 2019 at 8:01 AM | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on “I Want to Achieve Something”

Today at the James Lee Community Center, immigrants who have passed their citizenship exam will become United States citizens during a USCIS Naturalization Ceremony. One of these new United States citizens is Phuong, an LCNV learner originally from Vietnam. In her essay below, Phuong writes about her time in the United States, her discovery of LCNV’s English classes, and her dreams for the future. All of us at LCNV are so proud of Phuong for her dedication to learning English, and we congratulate her on achieving citizenship!

Learning English is a vital part of becoming a US Citizen. If you would like to help your neighbors learn English, consider volunteering with LCNV. You can find more information at lcnv.org/volunteer.

“My name is Phuong. I arrived in the United States from Vietnam five years ago. I knew that I had a lot of work to do to improve my English so that I could find a job. I have been taking English classes since June 2015 at LCNV. Before I came here I did not understand English when people were talking with me. I was scared to go out on the street. Now I feel happier than [before]. I think that I will have to learn English for a long time. I want to achieve something, and I want to see myself be better at English in the future for my life. I’d like to thank all the teachers at LCNV.”

Narmen’s Story

March 6, 2019 at 7:52 AM | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Narmen’s Story

Nearly 14% of Northern Virginia households can be considered linguistically isolated. LCNV’s focus on teaching English language literacy together with practical life skills helps learners break through that isolation and anxiety. LCNV learner Narmen writes about this in her essay, where she explains how learning English with LCNV has given her the confidence to navigate life, from communicating with her doctor to accessing the area’s transit options.

If you would like to help your neighbors break out of linguistic isolation, consider volunteering with LCNV. Visit lcnv.org/volunteer for more information.

“Learning English improves my life. It helps me if I go to the doctor to feel [better]. Before I was nervous all the time because I couldn’t speak English. Now I am so happy. I talk to my friends and my neighbors. I can watch TV. I can understand and I can read stories in the books. If I need to travel now, it is easy for me. I can read my travel times. I can ask someone about everything I need.”

Tan’s Story

February 27, 2019 at 6:16 AM | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Tan’s Story

Learning a second language as an adult can be one of the most difficult pursuits that a person completes in their lifetime. LCNV’s learners often struggle with the sometimes confusing rules of English, from strange pronunciation, to odd rules about plurals. Imagine if you weren’t just learning English as a second language, but in addition to the multiple languages that you already spoke! LCNV learner Tan writes about this in his essay, where he shares that English is his third language.

If you would like to help learners like Tan access English classes throughout Northern Virginia, please consider donating to LCNV. Your support provides scholarships, supplemental services, and more for the 1500 learners LCNV serves each year. Read Tan’s essay below.

“In my country I didn’t study English. I came over [to the US] and I’ve started studying since 2017. I know one more language. This is the third language. I can practice with my friends or study new words and practice.”

Cesar’s Story

February 20, 2019 at 5:42 AM | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Cesar’s Story

“Learning English helps me talk to my friends,” says LCNV learner Cesar. As a member of the LCNV community, Cesar has learned how to speak more confidently and effectively. If you or someone you know needs to improve their spoken English, stop by one of LCNV’s FREE conversation classes at the Meadows of Chantilly on Tuesday and Thursday nights and the James Lee Community Center in Falls Church on Monday nights. Call 703-237-0866 for more details, and read Cesar’s story below.

“Learning English helps me talk to my friends. It helps me at work and talking to my boss and customers. It helps me talk to the doctor. Learning English helps me drive.”

“The Language of Science”

February 13, 2019 at 8:27 AM | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on “The Language of Science”

LCNV’s learners come from many different academic and professional backgrounds; they are architects and poets; salespeople and scientists. LCNV learner Akbal had a 30-year career in his home country, where he spoke Arabic. When he came to the United States, he knew he had to learn English to continue his professional and personal pursuits. Now, Akbal is learning English to stay on the cutting edge of science and technology, to develop new relationships in his community, and even to watch his favorite English-language films without subtitles! Read Akbal’s story here:

“When I was in school in my country and when they taught us English, I found it [was] a very beautiful language. I like it very much. For ten years at school there were very good teachers. After my graduation from college I got a job but in Arabic so I stopped learning English for 30 years.

When I arrived in the US in 2013, I found difficulties because I couldn’t speak English well like when I went to the doctor, or the supermarket, or going to my son’s school if there was a problem with him. So I decided to learn English again to help myself live and have contact with people, and because it is the language of film which I like so much and I [don’t] want to rely on subtitles. It is the language of science so it helps me to teach my son and it helps me with technology.

The most important thing is I began to understand what doctors say about my health. The English language is commonly used so when I travel to any country I can speak with people in English.”

Antonio’s Story

February 6, 2019 at 8:00 AM | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Antonio’s Story

English can help people achieve their dreams in the United States. LCNV learner Antonio is able to communicate better with his colleagues, speak with his neighbors, and help his daughter in school, all thanks to his decision and love of learning English. Read his story below, and don’t forget that February 9 is your last chance to sign up for upcoming LCNV English classes! Call 703-237-0866 for more information.

“I am Antonio. I am from El Salvador. My language is Spanish. I speak English with my daughter. I got this American visa to fly to the USA. I arrived 18 years ago. I decided to speak English when all the people in my job speak English. All the time I love to speak English. I know I am practicing more on my words with my friends. We don’t have anything similar except for a few words. The difficulty for me is learning because I speak a little more. Now I can speak and can ask anything I want. I am looking for work. It is easier for me to fill out applications and I can speak with my neighbors in the community and in the school. For example, I can ask something about my daughter. I can get my driver’s license. For my future, I want to keep on with English class. I would like to speak excellent English because I want to get my American citizenship. I would like to live here in the USA all my life and maybe get a government job. We are living in the USA. English is important because English is the language all persons speak in the USA. I recommend learning English because you get a better job if you speak English. We can help friends, family and sons and wife with English. Life would be better and all would be happy.”

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